Pereira and Charles Luckman
William Leonard Pereira (4/25/09 - 11/13/89) graduated from the University of Illinois’ School of Architecture, and began his career in his home town of Chicago. His earliest architectural experience was helping to draft the master plan for the 1933 "A Century of Progress" Chicago Worlds Fair. With his brother, Hal he designed the Esquire Theater, considered one of Chicago's best examples of Art Deco. He moved to Los Angeles in the 1930s with his brother. After working as a solo architect, he designed the first buildings for the Motion Picture Country House in Woodland Hills, CA (1942). After a short stint working in Hollywood as an art director and occasional producer, He continued his architecture career first as a professor of architecture at USC and then formed a partnership with Charles Luckman in 1950. One of their most well-known buildings in their nine year partnership was the Theme Building at Los Angeles International Airport (in collaboration with Paul Williams and Welton Becket). They parted in 1959 and Pereira formed his third and final company, William I. Pereira and Associates. In the 1960s and 70s he and his team completed over 250 projects.
Charles Luckman (5/16/09 - 1/26/99) was a businessman and architect, famous as "the Boy Wonder of American Business" when he was named president of the Pepsodent Toothpaste Comany in 1939 at the age of 30. He later became President of Lever Brothers. Luckman graduated with a degree in Architecture in 1931 from the University of Illinois but went into sales during the depths of the Great Depression. After almost 20 years in business, he helped plan Lever Brothers’ New York skyscraper, Lever House, that was designed by Gordon Bunshaft of Skidmore, Owings, and Merrill. Reminded of his architectural roots, Luckman resigned the presidency of Lever Brothers, moved to Los Angeles around 1950, and began practicing architecture with fellow University of Illinois graduate, William Pereira. Their partnership led to works such as CBS Television City, but the two went their separate ways in 1958-59. Luckman opened his own firm in Los Angeles and had satellite offices in New York and Phoenix. Some of his later projects were Madison Square Garden, the Los Angeles Zoo, and Macy's Plaza in Los Angeles. Luckman retired in 1977 though he still kept a hand in the office run by his son, who retired in 1991. Luckman passed away in Los Angeles in 1989.
Partial List of San Diego Projects
Hospital (1960). Photograph
by Julius Shulman.