Landmarks Heritage Preservation Commission

Donald Polsky

Polsky Collection

Donald P. Polsky is an American architect noted for his mid-century modern style. Polsky brought California modern style to the Midwest. He is also credited with being a pioneer of the design-build concept.

Polsky was born in Milwaukee, WI on September 30, 1928, and grew up in Lincoln, NE. He graduated from the University Of Nebraska College of Engineering and Architecture (now College of Architecture) with a BA in 1951.

Polsky served in the United States Air Force from 1951-53. Upon discharge, he wished to work for the best practicing architect in the world. From 1953-56, Polsky served as job captain for the renowned Richard Neutra.

In 1956, Polsky started his own firm. In 1962 his design for the Oceano Apartments in Santa Barbara, CA won honorable mention award from the AIA, Life and House & Home magazines.

In 2002 he was awarded the Harry F. Cunningham Gold Medal for Architectural Excellence in the State of Nebraska from the Nebraska Chapter of the American Institute of Architects. The following year, Polsky was elevated to fellowship in the AIA, one of the highest honors bestowed upon architects, as fewer than 2% of those registered with the AIA attain the rank.