An architect by profession, I've spent over 30 years in project and practice management. I held various responsibilities as a member of the leadership team that evolved Smith Carter Architects and Engineers Inc. into one of Canada’s most highly respected and profitable multidisciplinary firms. Now known as Architecture49.

As Chief Operating Officer I was responsible for the integrated operations of architectural, structural, mechanical, electrical, interior design and landscape professional services. As a member of the executive team, I helped pilot the firm through both organic growth and acquisitions. As a Principal I led multiple high profile projects.

Retirement from practice in 2013 was outstanding. However after a year of travel and catching up with family, I got a bit restless and returned to my passion … practice building.

I'm excited to be coaching and guiding emerging and evolving design firms...helping them to grow stronger, better able to make meaningful contributions to the built environment. Ensuring the owners of those firms are compensated for their scope of responsibility, and the high value they provide to their clients.

Education:Rick Linley

    • Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design - Accredited Professional, 2003
    • Project Management Professional, 1997 - 2013
    • Master of Architecture, University of Manitoba, 1984
    • Bachelor of Environmental Studies, University of Manitoba, 1980

Professional Achievements

  • Principal, Strong Practice Strategies, 2014-present
  • Early Retirement, 2013
  • Various community/professional boards and committees.
  • Fellow – Royal Architectural Institute of Canada, 2002
  • Manitoba Association of Architects, President, 2000
  • 'Professional Practice' sessional instructor, Masters level, University of Manitoba, Faculty of Architecture, 2001-2011
  • Project Director/Principal-in-Charge of multiple projects. Notable examples: Smith Carter Headquarters (now Architecture49), Winnipeg (2004); Manitoba Hydro’s Corporate Headquarters, Winnipeg (2009); both are LEED Platinum and multiple design award winners.
  • Chief Operating Officer, Smith Carter, 1999-2013
  • Principal/Shareholder, Smith Carter, 1995-2013
  • Smith Carter Architects and Engineers Inc. 1985-2013

Scoreboard Your Practice Book Cover


Scoreboard Your Practice: 7 Numbers to Understand Your Design Firm’s Financials
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Recent Speaking Engagements:

- Model Your Firm's Fiscal Health, MAA Con-ed, January 2024
- Buildex Vancouver, March 2022
- Entrearchitect Mastermind session presentations, February, March 2022
- Interior Designers of Alberta Con-ed; January, February, March 2022
- AIBC Con-ed; October 2021
- MAA Webinars; February 2021, August 2020
- MAA Con-ed, Winnipeg; January 2016, February 2017, January 2018
- AIBC AGM speaker and panelist, Blueprint for Business seminar, May/September 2016
- IDC/PIDIM Con-ed, Winnipeg, April 2016

Attendees gave consistently high satisfaction ratings for each of these sessions. The following type of feedback is quite common: “It was clear that Rick really understands how designer's minds work. His relatability was refreshing and the delivery of information was clear and easy to digest.” – Interior Design Firm Principal, Alberta.