Arcadis IBI Group Remembers President, David Thom
Arcadis IBI Group is deeply saddened by the passing of its President, David Thom, on Friday, October 13, 2023. David’s contributions to city-shaping and architectural design are extensive, and yet, above all, his legacy will be one of dedicated mentorship, endearing him to colleagues who recall his unwavering support.
David began his career with IBI Group in 1974 after receiving his Bachelor of Architecture degree from the University of Toronto. David advanced from Associate to Director quickly due to his talent, willingness to take on new challenges, and focus on the client experience – attributes that persisted throughout his career. He took on increasing responsibilities in the management and leadership of the firm, such as establishing Vancouver as a new office and helping IBI transition from a partnership to a publicly traded company. In 2013, he joined the firm’s executive leadership team as President, managing and leading our multidisciplinary teams of professionals and championing cross-geography collaboration on projects, spearheading growth into new markets. He specialized in the planning and design of complex solutions that integrated placemaking, architecture, and transportation, leading many major urban development projects across Canada, the US and internationally, including public/private partnerships and private finance initiatives. Some of his most notable and iconic work includes the BC Cancer & Research Centre in Vancouver (in joint venture with Henriques & Partners), McGill University Healthcare Centre in Montreal and Candlestick Point and Hunters Point Shipyard in San Francisco. In 2023, David became a Fellow of the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada (RAIC), a prestigious recognition of individuals who have rendered distinctive service to the profession. This achievement reflected David’s commitment to his craft, as well as his passion to make the world a better place to live.
Dedicated to his profession, David generously volunteered his time, knowledge, and expertise across a range of sectors. He served as a Board Member of the Canadian Council for Public Private Partnerships (CCPP) and participated in Design Review Panels and Architectural Juries in both academic and professional settings. David was a strong supporter and advocate for the National Organization of Minority Architects (NOMA) and IBI’s Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (JEDI) Task Force and Global Women’s Network (GWN).
As we became Arcadis IBI Group in the fall of 2022, David passionately believed that this important next chapter for the firm would open new and significant opportunities for our people and provide a platform for growth and advancement of our mission as a technology-driven design firm. David recognized the closely aligned values and complementary visions of IBI Group and Arcadis, and was steadfast in his belief that together, they would make a profound and lasting impact on the world around us.
The firm is grateful to have been witness to David’s remarkable 50-year career and will remember him for his dedication to his profession and his keen eye for emerging trends and opportunities. But most of all, we will remember him for his compassion, dignity and care as a thoughtful mentor and friend to many.
Arcadis IBI Group’s video tribute to the life and legacy of David Thom can be viewed below.