Owner + Founder
In 1987, Jonas Carnemark founded a company to realize his creative goal: to bring home remodeling dreams to life—with both beauty and purpose. Since then, he has grown a 20-person design + build firm where devotion to the clean lines of modern design flows easily alongside attention to comfort. It’s here that form and function, and service and integrity, co-exist naturally.
“I carry around Walter Gropius’ dictum that good design involves the deliberate lack of arbitrary ornamentation.”Jonas Carnemark
Homeowners throughout the Washington metropolitan area and nationally have celebrated the company’s results. Renowned as a top designer and builder, Jonas has been a judge at national remodeling competitions, such as the National Kitchen & Bath Association’s Annual Design Awards, and has been regularly honored as one of Home & Design magazine’s Portfolio of 100 Top Designers.
Jonas was born in Sweden and grew up in Alexandria, Va., in a family where art mattered—his grandfather owned a modernist gallery in his native country. He later attended the University of California at Santa Cruz, majoring in physics and engineering. As a student and after graduation, he sharpened his practical training through hands-on work, ranging from environmental design and plumbing to electrical installation for alternative-energy homes in California to carpentry on historic preservation projects in Washington.
A Certified Remodeler (CR), Certified Kitchen Designer (CKD), and Certified Living in Place Professional (CLIPP), Jonas often serves as a voice for the profession, leading discussions and seminars and writing articles. Recent speaking engagements include a keynote address on green remodeling at The Kitchen & Bath Industry Show (KBIS), a presentation at the 2016 Dwell on Design event, and design seminars at various state and local chapters of the National Association of the Remodeling Industry (NARI) and the National Kitchen and Bath Association (NKBA).
At CARNEMARK, Jonas chooses projects that challenge: whole-house renovations and additions, as well as kitchens, baths, home offices, media rooms, music studios, and more. The unifying element is making space useful—the ultimate effect is making a space joyful. “I believe all good design must be inherently purposeful. It isn’t enough to be merely beautiful, it also must genuinely work. There’s great joy and satisfaction in the marriage of form and function.”
Jonas lives in a midcentury contemporary home in a suburban Maryland neighborhood with his wife, two cats, a rescue puppy, and three grown daughters who come and go as they like. In his downtime, Jonas skis (extreme whenever possible) and plays guitar for HusBand, a funk/rock band that performs locally and regularly records in his at-home studio.
Business Development and Marketing
As his title suggests, Project Developer Patrick Herald is involved in nearly every job—from introductions to design to estimating and beyond. Consistently at the client’s side, he makes sure each project successfully moves through the CARNEMARK process to completion.
Patrick studied at the University of Pennsylvania, graduating with a bachelor’s degree in Anthropology and a minor in Art History. Post-college jobs included positions in general commercial contracting and property management. His strong desire to learn more about the industry soon took Patrick back to school, where he earned his master’s degree in Architecture from the California College of the Arts.
“My career has worked backward through the cycle of a building,” he explains. He began by managing aging buildings, moved on to overseeing construction, and now manages the design process. “I think this gave me a thorough appreciation of enduring design and quality construction,” he says. “Anthropology taught me how people use their spaces. Architecture lets me influence how they use it.”
Patrick was attracted to CARNEMARK because of the firm’s approach to remodeling, treating it as a process, not a product. His strength lies in his ability to listen attentively to his clients, striving to guide them toward the decisions that are right for them and their individual project. “Good design starts with finding out what people want and how they are going to use it,” he explains. “Our process begins with understanding clients’ wishes, wants, and needs and extends through design to construction for ultimate satisfaction.”
You’ll find Patrick in just about every CARNEMARK meeting, drinking copious amounts of coffee in between, with a mischievous smile permanently on his face and a witty comment on the tip of his tongue. He lives in Washington, DC with his wife, three young children, and a menagerie of animals, small and large.
One of Patrick’s favorite quotes:
“If a cluttered desk is a sign of a cluttered mind, of what, then, is an empty desk a sign?” Albert Einstein
Most clients don’t realize how many decisions go into a remodel. Material options, paint colors, drawer pulls: The choices can get overwhelming. But don’t fret. When it comes to deciding between nickel or chrome, Caitlin Harris has it covered. With a knack for recognizing one shade of gray from another—and an impressive mental catalog of which vendors carry what—Caitlin readily shares her product expertise, research savvy, and methodical approach with co-workers and clients alike.
As Selection Coordinator, she works closely with homeowners from schematic design through final production to ensure every remodel remains true to their wishes. A true people person, Caitlin says the favorite part of her role centers on getting to know clients—and helping them translate their vision into reality.
Caitlin attended the Art Institute of Washington in Arlington, Va., focusing her studies in interior design. As a student, she interned at several design firms, where she welcomed the chance to attend well-known industry events, including High Point Market, the largest furnishings trade show in the world. After completing her degree, Caitlin landed a position as a visual merchandiser at a high-end furniture store. She later moved into the building industry as a designer at a natural stone importer and distributor, and later, at a general contracting firm in Fairfax, Va.
When asked what attracted her to CARNEMARK, she points to the company’s client-centered design + build process. She goes on to explain an even deeper motivation, “What drew me in most was the respect CARNEMARK has in the community,” she adds, “that was important to me.”
Caitlin lives in Washington, DC, and likes to get outside as much as she can in her free time.
Senior Project Designer
Every remodeling decision requires careful consideration of multiple factors—vision, mechanics, budget are just a few. As Senior Project Designer, Michael Gillen knows just how to strike that delicate balance. For him, a project always begins with a crystal-clear understanding of the client’s vision. Each design builds from there, all the while staying true to the practical concerns that make a project succeed on every level.
“I like the challenge of keeping the integrity of the design concept through hurdles such as budget, structure, and mechanics. But most satisfying is hearing clients say that the design concept is what they envisioned, and that they love the feel and function of the space.”
With 17 years in the industry overall and 10 years at CARNEMARK, Michael finds the team culture and trusting client relationships make it an excellent place to create and achieve. He especially respects the company’s modern aesthetics and attention to detail. While fulfilling his duties at CARNEMARK, Michael worked his way through the Catholic University School of Architecture, graduating cum laude in 2007.
Michael is influenced by early modern design styles and tries to integrate sustainable design whenever practical. His areas of expertise include building science, building information modeling (BIM), and building permit procurement from multiple agencies across the metropolitan area.
As a native New Yorker who grew up in Long Island, Michael misses the beach, but he finds the culture and diversity of DC inspiring. He takes it all in—with his wife and young daughter—every chance he gets. A family favorite: sharing Dippin’ Dots at the National Zoo.
Katarzyna (Kasia) Kabat-Cieslak
Katarzyna (Kasia) Kabat-Cieslak finds herself right at home with the European design aesthetic at CARNEMARK. She previously worked in Poland as a registered architect, after earning a master’s degree in architecture and urban planning from Poznan University of Technology. Until coming to the United States in 2001 Kasia had lived in Europe most of her life.
While Kasia leans toward the classic “less is more” design principle of architect Mies van der Rohe, she feels at ease creating solutions in any architectural style. For her, every project begins as a new collaboration. It’s about working together to understand how clients envision their surroundings—and finding ways to make that space more appealing and functional.
“My work experience in design and construction gives me a practical appreciation of both the art and the craft of architecture,” she says.
As a Project Designer at CARNEMARK, she stays laser-focused on helping clients create an enduring remodel, one that can change as their lives change. Different people, different seasons, different occasions—to Kasia, a house with good design can welcome them all.
With two teenage daughters, Kasia knows a bit about staying flexible at home. When her busy schedule allows, she and her husband enjoy cooking, long walks, and family game nights.
Twenty-five years in construction has taught Paula Williams to stick to a time-honored principle: Keep it simple.
Of course, that’s not to say her job as CARNEMARK’s Projects Coordinator is easy. Estimating, ordering, and tracking countless details for multiple projects at once is no cakewalk. But her straightforward approach, along with an easygoing manner, helps Paula stay focused on the sweetest prize of all—client satisfaction.
Trained as a French chef and is a fully apprenticed cabinetmaker & joiner, Paula also enjoys being a detective. Looking for an unusual drawer pull you spotted at some far-flung hotel? Hoping to match original marble hex tile in your bathroom? Dreaming of an infrared sauna? Whatever the hard-to-find product, Paula is on the case.
The opportunity to work with an in-house creative team that specializes in both design and construction attracted her to CARNEMARK. “The collaborative effort to go beyond client expectations sets the company apart,” Paula says. “From start to finish, we’re all striving toward the same goal.”
Paula lives in suburban Maryland with her husband, two gorgeous daughters, and a blue-nosed pitbull named Alfie. When she’s not on the job, you will likely find her working on her own home remodel.
Frank Sis, CRPM
Senior Project Manager
“At the end of the day, I love seeing the smiles on our client’s faces when they see the completed project.”
Frank Sis worked as a craftsman for 15 years before joining CARNEMARK. He made the choice because he likes the team atmosphere and the fact that he’s treated “like a person, not a number.”
The same can be said for CARNEMARK’s relationship with its clients. As a project manager, Frank is responsible for executing the construction elements of CARNEMARK projects. He enjoys having the opportunity to work closely with clients, making sure his work is truly reflective of their tastes.
When he’s not working or traveling, Frank spends his time playing outdoor sports or boating.
You might say Jorge Burbano is living the dream. “I have been a mechanical person since I was a little kid,”he says. “Pursuing a career in the construction industry was always my dream.”
A fan of modern architecture, straight lines, sleek styles, Jorge finds himself right at home as a CARNEMARK Project Manager. “The encouraging team work environment really sets the company apart,” he says. He especially appreciates the CARNEMARK process and is always looking for ways to raise the bar in customer experience.
Previously, he Jorge studied construction management at Montgomery College and worked at Signature Elevators and Accessible Design. He also holds a bachelor’s degree from Corporación Universitaria Adventista in his home country of Colombia, where he was a high school history teacher.
Jorge lives in Frederick, Maryland, with his wife, Patricia, 12-year-old daughter, and the family dog and cat. In his spare time, he enjoys playing chess and classical guitar.
A kitchen requires a careful balance of function and beauty. Sure, the space has to work hard. But given the amount of time spent in the kitchen, it better be a place you love, too.
Designer Kate Wilson discovered her affection for kitchen design while helping her parents plan out their own. An Interior Design graduate of Auburn University, she also has closet design training and regularly updates her product knowledge in everything from fixtures to countertops and lighting to pro-grade appliances from Sub-Zero, Wolf, and Miele.
But cabinetry is her passion. A devoted SieMatic fan, Kate gravitates toward clean, contemporary design. Like the German cabinet manufacturer, she also enjoys finding creative ways to blend traditional touches with modern styles, catering to individual client tastes.
Working with the design team, Kate gladly lends her expertise to help create CARNEMARK kitchens that work as good as they look. She also oversees cabinet order processing, tracking and delivery, and installation. Her favorite part of the process is seeing a client’s first reaction to the finished space—that’s the real reward.
A new homeowner, Kate enjoys working with her husband on her own home and garden design and cheering on Auburn football or Nats baseball—a sport for each season.
A kitchen remodel is only as good as its details—the countless design and technical specifications that make the space function and flow. Design Assistant Liz Parks is your detail person.
Working primarily on CARNEMARK kitchen remodels Liz supports the design staff with project management from beginning to end. Trained in the finer points of SieMatic cabinetry, she splits her time between processing orders, scheduling/tracking deliveries, compiling installation manuals, and more. She’s a pro at interacting with all the different players in a project, from interior designers and architects to suppliers, vendors, and subcontractors. Her detail work ensures every kitchen remodeling experience is a great one.
Liz earned her bachelor’s degree in interior design from West Virginia University, where she discovered her niche in kitchen design. She found more inspiration when she took an opportunity to study in England and travel throughout Europe. An interest in sustainable building practices led her to achieve the LEED Green Associate certification.
Nevertheless traveling and drawing are still her favorite hobbies, that is, when she’s not cheering on her Ravens and Mountaineers.
Satoko Tanabe came to CARNEMARK right out of the University of Maryland College Park. With dual undergraduate degrees in architecture and marketing, she brings to the company expert computer skills, customer understanding, and a love of clean design.
As Design Assistant, she supports the design team in everything from creating photo-realistic renderings and generating digital floor plans to updating product schedules and putting together project manuals. Her favorite part of the job so far: Watching something she helped create digitally become tangible.
A lifelong Bethesda resident, Satoko lives in her family home, where she likes to read, draw, and cook in her spare time. She also enjoys outdoor activities such as camping, kayaking, and hiking.
You might say Christina Porcelli has twin talents. With 20 years of experience, the seasoned accounting pro can size up just about any P&L in a snap. But when her nose isn’t in the numbers, she’s a real people person—ready with support and a smile for customers and co-workers alike.
Right brain, left brain, Christina excels in both hemispheres. Her customer service skills fit right in to the CARNEMARK culture. “Every person across every department helps make sure clients have our full attention at any given moment,” she says. “Our ultimate goal is to build lasting client relationships based on a deep level of respect and trust.”
A native to the Washington area, Christina didn’t waste any time launching her career. She accepted her first accounting position—in the healthcare sector—not long after completing her studies at Northern Virginia Community College. Since then, she steadily moved up in the ranks, gaining nearly a decade of specialization in construction accounting.
Christina enjoys down time with her friends and family. She loves camping, travelling, live music, and quiet time to read. Her laughter can be heard bellowing through the office several times a day.
Assistant Project Developer
Science or art? The debate continues about which term best describes project development. But when it comes to taking a remodel from start to finish, the pros agree: The best project developers bring both skill sets to the table.
Mauricio Anillo comes to CARNEMARK with just such a winning combination—plus a recent graduate degree in project management from Missouri State University. His head for details means he excels as Assistant Project Developer, especially in tasks like estimating, scheduling, and production administration. And his open-minded, friendly manner translates to easy communication and collaboration.
“My philosophy is based on dedication and learning,” Mauricio says. “The positive work environment at CARNEMARK allows me to continue to develop my skills in a changing industry.”
Mauricio keeps a photo of his parents, two older brothers, and 4-year old niece on his desk. “I’m a family person, so it’s not easy with them all in Colombia,”he says. “I try to talk to them almost every day to share how much I enjoy living abroad.”
A relative newcomer to the metro DC area, Mauricio still enjoys exploring like a tourist. But when he really needs to clear his mind, he heads to the soccer field.