neil carter


Neil Carter, Architect

A native of Huntington, Indiana, Neil moved to Albuquerque, New Mexico, in 1971. He earned a bachelor's degree in architecture at the University of New Mexico, while working summer construction jobs and the night shift at a manufacturing company owned by Sandia Pueblo. He moved to Virginia in 1975 to pursue a graduate degree at Virginia Tech and career opportunities in architecture and project management.

Longing for sunshine and green chile, Neil moved back to New Mexico in 1980. He settled in Santa Fe where he established a drafting service for architects and developers before receiving his architectural license in 1983. The practice grew to a dozen employees and became the first architectural firm in New Mexico to convert 100% of its work to computer-assisted design (CAD.) In 1986, Neil partnered with a local builder to establish what became a very successful residential design/build firm. However, by 1992 Neil was disenchanted with catering primarily to residential clients and he began offering personalized services to local tribes.

Neil's first dedicated tribal work was with Santa Ana Pueblo where his firm had previously provided conventional architectural services. Gaming was becoming a significant revenue source for the pueblo, and economic development and community improvement projects multiplied. Neil earned the trust of tribal leadership and became an integral part of Santa Ana's accomplishments through the 1990s, serving as an advisor, owners' representative and project manager for a vast range of projects.

In 2001, Neil began offering his services to other Native American communities. His clients now include the Jicarilla Apache Nation, the pueblos of Santo Domingo, Isleta, Zia and San Ildefonso, Dineh Cooperatives, Inc. and Five Sandoval Indian Pueblos, Inc. He continues to help his many tribal clients achieve their development goals by working closely with tribal leadership to help them become sophisticated consumers of contemporary development services and by providing a unique range of services tailored specifically to producing successful projects in Indian Country.

Neil and his family live in Santa Fe in a house he designed and built in 1988.