Our Team

Ellen Cassilly

Ellen’s architectural design experience began in 1983, she began working in the Triangle in 1992 and in 1999 she became the principal of her own firm in Durham. She focuses on creating projects that contribute to vibrant urban neighborhoods that minimize sprawl, while prioritizing modern and sustainable spaces.

She received her Bachelor’s of Environmental Design degree from Texas A & M University and a Master of Architecture degree from the University of Pennsylvania. Prior to moving to the Triangle, she worked for four years in Paris with Christian de Portzamparc, past winner of the Pritzker Prize (a worldwide award given annually for a career of exceptional architectural design). In 1994, she joined Frank Harmon Architect, a nationally recognized firm located in Raleigh, where she worked on a variety of projects including the North Carolina Museum of Art Amphitheater and Gift shop, St. Matthews Parrish House, Durham Friends School, as well as many residences.

Throughout her career, Ellen has collaborated with architects, artists and clients to design and build single- and multi-family homes, commercial, religious and educational buildings. She is adept at listening to different perspectives and assimilating them into appropriate design solutions. Ellen co-teaches the architectural design/build studio at North Carolina State University in the College of Architecture. She also volunteers time with Durham Area Designers, Downtown Durham Inc. and the Durham Rotary. She is actively involved with various mentorship programs in the Durham Public Schools and NCSU College of Design. Ellen and her husband, Frank Konhaus, created a home-based artist’s residence and exhibitions program in 2009 at Cassilhaus, their home in Orange County.

Megan Patnaik

Megan comes to ECA with ten years of diverse experience ranging from residential design, construction management, commercial interior design, and community based design. Prior to coming on board she worked for Durham based design/build firm BuildSense where she lead residential architectural projects from design inception through construction. Her journey in design began during her undergrad studies at University of North Carolina in Greensboro in their Interior Architecture program.

She currently serves on the department board of advisors, recently rounding out her term as the head of the board of advisors. After working in the commercial world of interior design for several years, she attended and graduated in 2010 with a Masters of Architecture from NC State University’s School of Design, where she was the recipient of the David Allen Company Fellowship Scholarship. During her time at NCSU she focused her studies in community-based design, working with NC State University’s Home Environments Design Initiative. Outside of school she served as the first designer for the Raleigh non-profit Builders of Hope, developing the State Street Village community’s master plan and following through with the designing the first twelve homes within the neighborhood.

Amanda Isnard

Pamela Osborne

After 25 years vacillating between the restaurant and fashion industry, Pamela came to ECA in 2018 in need of a fresh start.  She was drawn to the idea of working with creative, driven women in an inclusive atmosphere.  Pamela spent the majority of her childhood and young adulthood in Durham, then moved to NYC after graduating from East Carolina University.  She returned in 2009 to be near family, and has loved watching Durham evolve- especially downtown.  Pamela is the one in the office that as Ellen says, “keeps the trains running on time”.  As Office Manager, Pamela handles the financials for the company in addition to tracking progress of all projects. 

Lauren Waterman