Watson Tate Savory (WTS) is pleased to announce that Gene Bell, AIA, LEED AP BD+C, and John McLean, AIA, LEED AP BD+C, have been promoted to Associate Principals and shareholders in the firm.


Gene Bell has served as project architect on many complex projects, including libraries, lab and classroom buildings, and a performing arts center, on campuses across South Carolina, such as the University of South Carolina, Midlands Technical College and the Technical College of the Lowcountry. Since 2002, Gene’s projects have received nine awards from the American Institute of Architects for design excellence. Active with the U.S. Green Building Council, he has been a leader in sustainable design, lecturing and instructing at various conferences and workshops. Gene is also past president of the Columbia Design League and has taught a graduate design studio at Clemson’s School of Architecture. Gene was previously promoted to Senior Associate in October 2012.


John McLean’s portfolio includes a variety of projects, most notably the Rehabilitation of South Carolina State University’s Lowman Hall, a National Register structure and recipient of four awards from the American Institute of Architects, as well as the SC Honor Award for Historic Preservation. John recently served as project architect for the Florence County Museum and the award- winning renovations to the South Carolina State Museum in the historic Columbia Mills Building. John has completed numerous renovations and rehabilitations of historic structures across the Carolinas, and has been an invited speaker at the SC Historic Preservation Conference. John was also previously promoted to Senior Associate in October 2012.