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Male, China/US, born 1917-04-26, died 2019-05-16

Associated with the firms network

Pei Cobb Freed and Partners; Pei Partnership Architects; Pei, I.M., and Partners, Architects

Professional History


Director of Architecture, Webb and Knapp, Developers, New York, NY, 1948-1955. William Zeckendorf, Sr., (1905-1976), who bought the Webb and Knapp real estate development company in 1938, appointed Pei Director of Architecture in 1948.

Founding Partner, I.M. Pei and Partners, New York, NY, 1955-1989; he founded this firm with colleagues from Webb and Knapp, Henry N. Cobb (b. 1926) and Eason Leonard.

Partner, Pei Cobb Freed and Partners, New York, NY, 1989-2009. Pei's firm has not done a large amount of work on the West Coast, with most commissions concentrated in Southern California. Although relatively small in number, the firm's commissions have generally been large in scale and importance. Pei worked until about 2009, one of his last works being the Macao Science Center in Macao, China.

Pei's sons, Li Chung Pei and Chien Chung Pei, along with some former employees of Peir Cobb Freed and Partners, formed Pei Partnership Architects in 1992.


Assistant Professor, Harvard University, Graduate School of Design (GSD), Cambridge, MA, 1945-1948.

Professional Activities

Member, American Institute of Architects (AIA), New York Chapter.

Professional Awards

Fellow, American Institute of Architects (FAIA).

Recipient, American Academy of Arts and Letters, Arnold W. Brunner Memorial Prize, New York, NY, 1961.

Academician, National Academy of Design, New York, NY, 1965. (See "Academicians: Architects," National Academy of Design 162nd Annual Exhibition, March 24-April 29, 1987, [New York: National Academy of Design, 1987], n.p.)

Recipient, American Institute of Architects (AIA), Gold Medal, 1979.

Recipient, Hyatt Foundation, Pritzker Architecture Prize, Chicago, IL, 1983.

Recipient, National Medal of Arts, Washington, DC, 1988.

Recipient, Presidential Medal of Freedom, 1992.


High School/College

Saint John's Middle School, Shanghai, China.

B.Arch., Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA, 1940;

M.Arch., Harvard University, Graduate School of Design (GSD), Cambridge, MA, 1946.



Born in Canton, China, came to the U.S. in 1935, at the time of Japanese expansion into China.

He was naturalized as an American citizen in 1948.


He married Eileen Loo, in 1942.


Four children: Ting, Chien, Li and Liane;

PCAD id: 137

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