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Meet The Dallas 500: Cindy Simpson

The managing director of Gensler on her most frightening experience.
By D CEO |
courtesy of Gensler

Mississippi State University (BS-Interior Design)

Why Architecture
“My father was a general contractor, so I grew up in the business. One of my fondest memories as a child was climbing into his truck on a Saturday morning to visit job sites where he described to me the scope of the project and the vision of the owner. It was this early exposure to the profession that developed my keen eye for details and created my passion for design.”

Toughest Challenge
“In the male-dominated profession of architecture, it is imperative, as a female in the industry, that I am professionally confident, intellectually valiant, and mentally agile.”

Lesson Learned
“Reputation defines you, your leadership follows you, and your mentorship preserves you.”

What Keeps Me Up At Night
“Knowing that the business and management decisions that I make have a direct impact on the health and well-being of our employees and their families.”

Fun Fact
“People may be surprised to know that I was a competitive tennis player when I was younger. Not only was the competitive nature of the game a great physical activity, but also an immense mental challenge with definitive strategy needed in order to be successful.”

What I’d Tell an 18-Year-Old Me
“Consider the consequences of your actions, what you say, how you portray yourself not only personally but professionally, as you are writing your own story for the world to perceive.”

Most Frightening Experience
“The most frightening and most rewarding thing I have done is adopt my daughter, Aston. Without the nine-month process to prepare for an infant and then to have an instant family overnight was terrifying. Adopting Aston has taught me that facing my fears brings great reward.”

This Q&A is extended content from the Dallas 500, a special edition produced by D CEO that profiles the region’s most influential business leaders. Visit for details.

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