J. Brett Blanton
On December 9, 2019, J. Brett Blanton was nominated to serve as the 12th Architect of the Capitol. On December 20, 2019, the United States Senate confirmed Mr. Blanton, and on January 16, 2020, he was sworn in as Architect of the Capitol by Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts Jr.
In his role as Architect of the Capitol, Mr. Blanton is responsible for facilities maintenance and operation of the historic U.S. Capitol Building, the care and improvement of more than 570 acres of grounds and the operation and maintenance of 18.4 million square feet of buildings including: the House and Senate Congressional Office Buildings, the Capitol Visitor Center, the Library of Congress Buildings, the U.S. Supreme Court Building, the Thurgood Marshall Federal Judiciary Building and other facilities. He is responsible for the care of all works of art in the Capitol under the direction of the Joint Committee on the Library and is responsible for the maintenance and restoration of murals, outdoor sculpture and other architectural elements throughout the Capitol complex. He also serves as Acting Director of the U.S. Botanic Garden and the National Garden.
The Architect of the Capitol is a member of the Capitol Police Board and the Congressional Accessibility Services Board, as well as an ex officio member of the United States Capitol Preservation Commission. Additionally, the Architect of the Capitol is a member of the District of Columbia Zoning Commission, the President's Advisory Council on Historic Preservation, the National Capital Memorial Commission, the Art Advisory Committee to the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority and the National Institute for Conservation of Cultural Property.
Mr. Blanton completed his Bachelor of Science degree in Aeronautical Engineering at the United States Naval Academy and received his Master of Science degree in Ocean Engineering from Virginia Tech. He is a Licensed Professional Engineer in Civil Engineering and a Certified Energy Manager.
Mr. Blanton served as a U.S. Naval Officer for more than 20 years, lending his progressive leadership and engineering experience to some of the Navy’s largest and most complex planning, design and construction projects. Mr. Blanton served at both U.S. and overseas installations, Navy headquarters, the Joint Staff and in combat zones. He was awarded the Bronze Star with Combat "V" for heroism in Baghdad, Iraq.
After retiring from the Navy, Mr. Blanton joined ATCS, PLC as Vice President. He led all federal infrastructure services at the Architect/Engineer Firm. He also supported the development of the Community Resiliency Planning Guide; led the development of a groundbreaking plan in response to Superstorm Sandy, providing a critical decision tool for the ports that remain operational during disasters; and implemented a company-wide Human Capital Strategy, ensuring the company could recruit, train and retain the best architects and engineers.
Prior to joining the Architect of the Capitol, Mr. Blanton served as the Deputy Vice President at the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority. There he led a $1.5 billion Capital Planning, Design and Construction program at two of the most architecturally significant facilities in the Washington, D.C. area.