Brady, Clifton J.

(1894 - 1963)

Architect Clifton James Brady was born in Walker, Iowa on October 16, 1894. A gifted student, he reportedly concentrated on the Greek classics and the sciences while attending Central High School in Sioux City. He received his formal architectural education from Iowa State College (now Iowa State University), graduating with a B.S. in structure design in 1917. Upon graduation he was drafted into the Army during WWI (1917-19).

After the war, Brady became an inspector for the Beuttler & Arnold architectural firm in Sioux City, Iowa (1919-24). For reasons unknown, around 1927 he moved to Seattle and became chief inspector and specification writer for Seattle architect Floyd Naramore (1927-31). He was licensed to practice architecture in Washington the following year and left Naramore to take a job as the Chief Architectural Examiner for the Public Works Administration (PWA) Washington State Office (1933-37). When the PWA program folded, Brady returned to private practice once again and rejoined Naramore in 1938, this time as an equal partner.

In an effort to win more government contacts, Naramore and Brady partnered with other architects to bid on large construction contracts. A partnership with architects William J. Bain and Perry Johanson was so successful that the two firms decided to join forces creating a new firm was thereafter known as Naramore, Bain, Brady & Johanson (NBBJ), or just “the Combine.”

NBBJ pursued large military and institutional projects during and after the war. Such projects included a number of elementary and high school projects; barracks, headquarters, hangars and administration buildings for the U.S. Navy, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers; and various buildings for the Boeing Company. As with many large firms, design work was spread out among the partners. Using his expertise, Brady took often took on structural issues and specification writing. His principal works on the design side include King County Central Blood Bank (1945); Holy Rosary Parish Convent (1948) in Seattle; American Legion Building (1949); Seattle’s Veterans Hospital (1950 with McClelland & Jones); the Health Sciences building on the University of Washington campus (1950); the Federal Reserve Bank in Seattle (1951); the Wenatchee Jr. College campus (1951-53, with Alvin S. Erickson, Wenatchee); the Seattle Public Safety Building (1951); several structures at the Naval Air Base Whidbey Island (1951-55); the State Cerebral Palsy Building (1954) in Buckley; the Susan J. Henry Memorial Library (1954) in Seattle; the I. Magnin Store (1954) in downtown Seattle; Pacific National Bank – Wallingford Branch (1956); and Medina Elementary School (1957) in Bellevue.

Brady served as Vice President of the Seattle Chapter of the AIA in 1949 and served as AIA President in 1950. He died in Seattle in June 9, 1963.

- Michael C. Houser

Photo courtesy of WA State Department of Licensing
NBBJ Office, Seattle (c.1954) <br>Photo courtesy of UW Special Collections
Public Safety Building, Seattle (1951) <br>Photo courtesy of DAHP
Federal Reserve Bank, Seattle (1951) <br>Photo courtesy of DAHP
UW Health Science Building, Seattle (1950) <br>Photo courtesy of UW Special Collections
Veterans Hospital, Seattle (1950) <br>Photo courtesy of UW Special Collections
Photo courtesy of WA State Department of Licensing