Our mission is to further the sustainability of life by providing a cutting edge technology that is easy to build, aesthetically pleasing and affordable.
Architect, Contractor, Innovator and Form Free™ Team Member
Born and raised in the San Francisco Bay area, Michael was witness to that area’s uncontrolled growth; to buildings that seemed to appear almost overnight without any apparent thought for good design, best land use practices or for the future. That experience fueled Frerking’s desire to follow a career path toward a more thoughtful, sustainable solution to our built environment.
Michael obtained his architectural degree from Arizona State University in 1973. Unlike most architects of that time, however, Michael focused exclusively on sustainable practices; particularly on the development of high mass earthen buildings that promoted passive solar heating and cooling. One of his earliest designs – featured in Arizona Highways – was the Greib Home, the first passive solar home in Arizona.
In 1976, Michael opened Living Systems Sustainable Architecture, an architectural practice dedicated to designing energy efficient, high mass, passive solar homes. Although his first designs made use of adobe and rammed earth as his main wall building materials, Michael intuitively knew that there had to be a more cost effective method for building high mass walls.
In 1995, Michael introduced Poured Earth; an innovative method for reducing the delivery time and cost of high mass walls. In 2014, Frerking began to research a more dynamic approach to the reduction of costs. This time, however, his goal was to not only further reduce the cost of the walls but, also, that of the whole design/build process, itself.
Michael is well regarded, nationally and internationally, as one of the leading architects and innovators in the field of high mass, sustainable design and construction. Acting today as both architect and builder, Michael provides quality design/build services that meet the client’s budget and aesthetic desires.
Form Free™ Team Member
Tony Vezina grew up in NH to a contractor father. In order to help the family, Tony was required at the age of 14 to get a summer job. Liking the outside, Tony chose to work for his father; not an easy job. During those summers, Tony learned everything about construction – in detail! – from installing the driveway to handing clients their keys to a finished home.
As a young adult, Tony joined the military where he specialized in electronics. In 1970, Tony left the military with the necessary training in electronics to land a job working for “Ma Bell.” Tony worked for 27 years in the New England area and 12 more in Prescott, Arizona, where he continued to move up through the ranks of various communications companies until 2012 when he chose to retire. Not being the kind of person to retire, Tony used his experience in construction to design and build an addition to their home: a 400 s/f studio for his wife.
In 2011, Tony met Michael Frerking. Always interested in construction and sustainability, Tony was immediately interested in what Michael was doing. He was also taken by Frerking’s thoughts about making the design/build industry more sustainable and affordable. Like Frerking, Tony enjoyed “thinking outside the box.” Michael soon realized that Tony had an incredible mind not only for details… but for thinking and rethinking details.
In late 2015, as it became clear to Frerking that he must have help if he was to achieve his goal of changing the design/build industry, he began to think about partners. With his years of hands on construction experience, his management training skill and his ability to think outside the box, Tony was a perfect fit! Tony joined the Form Free™ Building Team in early 2016.
Tony is lead, on-the-job, trainer for fabrication and installation of the Form Free™ walls.
Form Free™ Team Member
Richard Staples hails from the most northeastern city of the United States: Caribou, Maine, where, at an early age, he developed his strong work ethic on the potato farms of northern Maine. After a stint with the U.S. Army, Rich completed his Bachelor of Science degree in Industrial Arts Education with a concentration in residential construction and energy efficiency.
Following graduation, Rich began teaching at a local high school where he built a curriculum of energy education courses to encourage students to investigate and examine their built environment. This endeavor ultimately led to working with the Department of Energy where Rich began to teach other teachers, within the state, on how to design and implement curriculums with more content regarding energy and energy use. This effort resulted in the development of the first accredited degree course, “Energy and Everyday Life.”
During summer breaks from teaching, Rich worked with local building contractors in the construction field. Choosing to leave the education field for a while, Rich took a position with an electric utility company that was developing a conservation program for its customers. This job gave him another valuable perspective on commercial and residential energy use.
Returning to education, but now at the college level, Rich taught drafting for the Building Construction, HVAC and Electronic programs. There he developed the computer aided Drafting/Design and Civil Engineering programs and served as department chair until his retirement. Soon after, Rich developed his own business – “Gofixit” – in order to continue his endeavors to create a more energy efficient world.
In 2016, Rich joined Michael Frerking and Tony Vezina in organizing the Form Free™ Building System team and their shared view of a sustainable built environment. Rich is lead educational trainer and is responsible for developing the Form Free™ Training and Certification Program curriculum.
Form Free™ Team Member
Joanne lived almost 35 of her younger years in Washington, D.C. After finishing a doctoral program in Political Science from the University of Maryland, Joanne chose to begin her professional career as a teacher for a private high school. In 1992, however, Joanne decided to leave teaching to help a friend put together a business plan to open a new business – a yoga studio in Tacoma Park, Maryland, – which remains, today, one of the largest and most successful yoga studios in the U.S.
In 1995, Joanne moved to Prescott, Arizona, where she chose to follow a different career path. Throughout her life, art had always been an important avocation. Now, she decided to make it her main focus. Soon after arriving in Prescott, Joanne was accepted as a member of a local cooperative art gallery where she remained for almost 8 years. In 2001, Joanne chose to take a bold step when she and several other artists decided to open their own art gallery. Having once before created a successful business plan for a new business, Joanne willingly accepted the job to do it again. In late spring, Joanne and her fellow owners opened a 3500 square foot contemporary art and craft gallery displaying the work of over 70 artists, both local and from around the United States. After almost 15 years, the gallery remains a great success.
As the wife of Michael Frerking, Joanne always took an interest in her husband’s design/build business, Living Systems Sustainable Architecture. Over the past few years, however, Joanne has begun to take on more of the business management and public relations needs for both Living Systems and the innovative and growing Form Free™ Building corporation.