James Hartford’s work is rooted in technical expertise and design sensibility. In addition to his excellent design skills, he contributes his building envelope expertise and leads the sustainable design process for each of the firm’s projects. He is currently working on several passive house projects that range from single-family retrofits, multi-unit urban row house retrofits, and an organic hard cider mill in the Catskills.

James is the founder and the past president of the Phius Alliance Hudson Valley chapter. In that capacity James has brought Phius Certified Builder (CPHB) instruction to Newburgh, New York, and Phius Certified Consultant (CPHC®) training to Schenectady, New York with significant funding from NYSERDA. These programs were the first of their kind in Upstate New York.

Prior to joining River Architects, James was a Project Architect with Rogers Marvel Architects and James Gainfort AIA Architect, where he contributed to award-winning renovation and rehabilitation projects such as the Pratt Institute School of Architecture, Carnegie Hall, the Governor’s and Admiral’s Houses on Governors Island, and the Brooklyn Museum Entrance Reconstruction & Water Fountain Project. James earned his Master of Architecture from the University of Buffalo and a Bachelor of Arts in English and Fine Arts from the University of Albany. He has studied abroad in Germany and in England and has taught upper level design studios at Kyonggi University’s Graduate School of Architecture in Seoul, South Korea.