Our Key Personnel
Sandy Harris, Controller and Operations Manager
Sandy joined the Sun Design team in April 2008. As the Controller and Operations Manager, she plans, directs and coordinates administrative services, including human resources, company benefits, departmental processes and general office support. In addition, she serves as a member of the management group and the board of advisors where she participates in the development of organizational strategic plans, contributing expertise and information within the area of administration, as well as coordination of intra-departmental objectives and initiatives.
Prior to working at Sun Design, Sandy accumulated 20 years of administrative experience while serving as director of operations for the Federal Research Service and as general manager for Quicksilver Restaurants. “I love working at Sun Design because of our team-spirited and customer-focused environment,” says Sandy.
Beth Walters, Director of Communications
Beth joined Sun Design in January 2011. As the Director of Communications she analyzes our market and proposes and implements strategies through market research, advertising and sales promotion programs. This involves designing, implementing, and facilitating annual marketing plans for the firm, translating business objectives and strategies to develop brand portfolio objectives, developing strategies to facilitate business growth, and developing all promotional and marketing materials.
She brings to Sun Design and its clients nearly a decade of experience in land development, community associations management, new home construction, remodeling, interior design and marketing. Before joining Sun Design, Beth was Marketing and Designs Manager for a leading new home builder in Virginia Beach, VA. Prior to that, she was the Community Associations Manager for KETTLER in McLean, VA. She has earned certifications from a number of urban planning, real estate and development organizations.
“I’ve always had a passion for architecture and then developed a craze for generating buzz. When my husband and I decided to move back to our home town I interviewed at a couple places, but when I met with Sun Design, it was love at first sight. The atmosphere in the office is electric… very addicting to one that likes high energy.” Beth is married with three kids at home to keep her on her toes 24-7.
Cathy Ryals, Director of Administration
Cathy joined the Sun Design team in October 2014. As Director of Administration, she keeps the office running seamlessly, supporting various staff and making sure everyone has what they need to provide an exceptional client experience.
Cathy brings several years experience in office management to the Sun Design team. She studied Information Technology Management at George Mason University and uses that experience to provide on-site IT support to our staff.
“I love working at Sun Design – our employees are an eclectic blend of folks with really cool ideas.” Cathy says. In her spare time, Cathy likes to travel, and spend time read and entertain.
Erin Garvey, Sales and Marketing Specialist
Erin joined the Sun Design team in 2014 as our Director of First Impressions, and now holds the position of Sales and Marketing Specialist. As such, Erin coordinates all of Sun Design’s events, both for our employees and for our clients, making everyone feel like a part of the family! She oversees the scheduling and communication with our current and prospective clients and ensures that each client is treated with the respect and charity that Sun Design was founded on. She is on the front lines of the business, and always prepared to go above and beyond to meet our clients needs.
Erin says, “The difference at Sun Design is its culture. Sun Design recognizes that its greatest resource is its people; their employees, trade partners and, most importantly, our clients! Sun Design offers a healthy balance of professionalism and light-hearted atmosphere.”
Before joining Sun Design, Erin worked extensively in customer service and client experience as a project coordinator in the remodeling industry. Erin was raised in Burke and graduated from George Mason University in Fairfax with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration and a minor in Psychology. Outside of work, Erin loves spending time with her family, friends, and dog! She enjoys trying new foods and wines, traveling and adventuring the outdoors.
Maryam Sodeifi, Client Support Manager
Maryam joined Sun Design in 2015 and has the role of Client Support Manager. In this position she supports both our internal staff and our clients alike. She helps the office function smoothly day-to-day, manages Sun Design’s master schedule, as well as special projects like EPA compliance. She is also the first point of contacts for any Warranty concerns, and is spearheading Sun Design’s new Forever Home Care program with Warranty & Service Manager, Jeff Nichols.
Before joining Sun Design, Maryam dedicated her career to the nonprofit sector, supporting a variety of teams and clients with limited resources. She received her Bachelors of Arts in Sociology from George Mason University, and brings leadership and facilitation experience to the Sun Design team.
Maryam said, “I heard about Sun Design from a friend and employee. I really love the community of people here at Sun Design, and admire the level of care they bring to our clients at every step through the remodeling process!”
Outside of work, Maryam enjoys gardening, swing dancing, spending time with her family and friends.
Deanna Paige, Administrative Assistant
Deanna began as a temp at Sun Design in 2018 and soon became our official Administrative Assistant. She is the first face you see when you visit us at our Burke office, and treats everyone with the utmost respect and kindness. Deanna assists in the day to day duties of our Administration, by communicating skillfully with all our departments and organizing all circulating information and details; which ensures that nothing will ever slip through the cracks! As well, Deanna helps clients when they come in to visit our home office, and her positive and enthusiastic attitude keeps the office atmosphere light and pleasant.
Deanna said of her position as Administrative Assistant: “I think it’s important to have that warm and friendly presence so that every client is treated equally throughout the entire process of them being with Sun Design.”
Deanna attended Northern Virginia Community College and studied Arts in Communications, and she brings her years of experience in customer service with her to Sun Design. Deanna said that what drives her every day is “being able to find the good in the bad and embrace failure in order to overcome and succeed. Growth and being the person I want to be, is what drives me the most.” In her spare time, Deanna loves spending time with animals, or searching out new restaurants and cafes to experience. “I’m a very social creature so I’m almost always out doing something or exploring.” Says Deanna.
Dave Cleary, Chief Estimator
Dave joined the Sun Design team in July 2007. As Chief Estimator, he is responsible for working with Accounting to develop standards of estimating, and to maintain estimating processes and methods. He works closely with the Sales and Design teams in order to gathering complete and accurate estimates of overall project costs to help ensure the clients goals are met, as well as the Sun Design standards.
Before coming to Sun Design, Dave spent over a decade working at his Father’s construction company. Building custom homes and remodeling projects all over Northern Virginia, Dave helped review plans, estimates, and contracts, and oversaw several building projects.
He says, “Coming from a large family, it’s comforting to be able to work at a place that has that same atmosphere of camaraderie and humor as you get at home.”
When not at work, Dave enjoys the outdoors. He likes to spend his time hiking, fishing, or floating down a river. When not outdoors, he likes to create in the kitchen, cooking delectable meals, some of which he shares with his coworkers…….if they’re lucky.
Tim Beer, Trade Management Specialist
Tim began working for Sun Design in June of 2018. He works closely with our Trades, ensuring that they understand the scope of work and Sun Design’s unique process for every project. Additionally, he maintains relationships between our Trades and projects, while working as a team with our designers and consultants to guarantee smooth sailing for our clients. Tim works closely with management as well, to interview and hire trade partners in order to maintain an adequate pool of qualified trades and certify quality work for every project.
Tim brings to Sun Design 5 years of professional experience as a Specialist in Strategic Sourcing for one of the world’s largest aerospace suppliers. He received his MBA from Northeastern University’s D’Amore-McKim School of Business in Boston, Massachusetts, where he fostered his fundamental understanding of Supply Chain Management.
“Sun Design is a place like no other. The company fosters a “People First” mentality that you can’t find anywhere else. You really feel like you are part of a team that has one common goal!” Tim said. Outside of Sun Design Tim loves to golf, play basketball, and spend time with his two sons, daughter, and wife. Teamwork and integrity are two fundamental values that drive Tim towards success. Sun Design’s unique culture and team atmosphere is what drew him to join the family!
Dana Bailey, Accounting Assistant
Dana started with Sun Design in 2017 bringing with her four years of experience as a bookkeeper in custom homebuilding. She is responsible for payroll processing, payment of bills and reconciliation of statements, generation of relevant reports and general filing for the department.
Dana says, “I really resonate with the company values: Truth, Fun and Charity. Sun Design is really well run and I like that they value me as much for who I am as what I bring to the table.”
Dana has an Associates of Science from Stratford University in Baking and Pastry Arts. In her spare time, she does cake decorating and gardening.
Grace Garvey, Director of First Impressions
Grace holds a position that few companies even have – but one that all Sun Design clients appreciate – Director of First Impressions. Grace joined Sun Design in September of 2018 and is the first person that every prospective client speaks to. She is an intricate part of the process to understand what potential clients will need or desire and, in turn, educates them on what it is that Sun Design does. Further, as Director of First Impressions, Grace maintains a constant flow of contact with both our prospective and current clients to ensure the success of our Design Consultants. Grace makes taking that first step toward your dream home an easy and enjoyable experience!
Before joining Sun Design, Grace worked for three years in sales and customer service. She achieved the highest sales rate for a year in her previous position and has been working for client satisfaction throughout her whole career. Grace demonstrates positivity and kindness in every interaction and said: “Charity is a huge part of Sun Design and being in an environment where that is at the forefront is very important. Sun Design’s culture is unparalleled to anything I have ever experienced. Everyone truly values each other. Whether it’s between clients, co-workers, trades, or anyone else we work with, Sun Design truly cares. We sincerely are one giant family.”
In her spare time, Grace enjoys relaxing with her husband and three children, and on weekends they often find themselves exploring outdoors or visiting family and relatives.
Helen Francis, Sales and Marketing Assistant
Helen began working at Sun Design in January of 2019, as our Sales and Marketing Assistant. She assists both the Sales and Marketing departments in everyday tasks and strives to support both teams to be successful. She coordinates our events and executes them to meet Sun’s standards and vision, creates marketing materials, and generates content through blogs and articles in collaboration with the Marketing team. Helen also assists our Director of First Impressions in her work, by keeping in touch with interested clients and helping our Design Consultants prepare for their meetings, as well as speaking with clients in order to understand how we can best help them achieve their remodeling goals.
Helen previously worked as a teaching assistant at a Montessori school, assisting with school events and administration. As well, she was a tutor at Virginia International Academy, and taught English to boarding school students. Helen’s experience teaching has prepared her to work well with other’s and helped to develop communication skills that she utilizes everyday with our clients.
Helen said, “I truly value honesty, thoughtfulness, and charity – without these I don’t know how any group or company can thrive, and fortunately these are the values that Sun Design shares!” In her spare time, Helen enjoys going to breweries with her friends and family, meeting new people, and writing.
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”I want to thank you and Sun Design for doing such a great job on my kitchen redesign. It is rare these days to work with a firm who does high quality work on time and on budget. Sun Design did just that.”Meridith