Ilia M. Ríos is a seasoned architectural professional with an impressive 27-year journey in the field. Her architectural career started at the University of Notre Dame, where she earned her Bachelor’s degree in Architecture. This program included an enlightening junior year abroad in the Rome Studies Program, which provided the perfect landscape to explore many parts of Italy and other European countries, significantly contributing to shaping her profound understanding of architecture and enriching life experiences.


Upon returning to her hometown of San Juan, Puerto Rico, Ilia’s career flourished at Figueroa & Figueroa Arquitectos. There, she honed her skills in design, construction documentation, and a firm’s administration with a holistic approach. A pivotal point in her journey came when she joined Jiménez & Rodriguez Barceló, AIA (JRB). After a short time at the firm, JRB was selected as the designer of the Puerto Rico Convention Center (PRCC) project, one that Ilia would play a significant role in and impact the course of her professional career. 


With the success of PRCC in 2003, JRB transitioned to V Architecture with the vision of providing continuity to the firm and transcending generations. Then, Ilia became a partner and was named President of V Architecture. With a continued zeal for the industry, Ilia thrived and took V Architecture to new heights, resulting in dozens of projects in various fields. Among the signature projects developed in the last decades are the Sabanera Health Center, Distrito T-Mobile, and the Puerto Rico Convention Center. In 2022, she launched V Interiors, a studio of V Architecture with a focus on interior design. 


Ilia’s accolades include being recognized as a Distinguished Woman in the Construction Industry in 2007 by the San Juan Star, as a Woman to Watch in 2014 by Caribbean Business and participating as co-author of the Reframing Perspectives Book sponsored by Women Who Lead launched in October 2023. She is deeply embedded in the community and is currently the Chair of the Board of Trustees of Academia María Reina, a Catholic college preparatory school for girls in San Juan.


An enthusiastic advocate of education, Ilia supervises the NCARB Architectural Experience Program, where she has worked with over 20 architects in training, and founded the V Architecture Mentorship & Internship Program. She is certified as a licensed architect in the state of Puerto Rico, is an Accredited Professional in Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) by the United States Green Building Council (USGBC) with a specialty in Building Design and Construction (BD+C), and holds a Construction Documents Technologist Certificate (CDT) awarded by the Construction Specifications Institute (CSI).


As the President and Managing Principal of V Architecture, Ilia leads a team of dedicated professionals, with 51% of them being women. Her holistic approach and transformative design philosophy continue to have a remarkable impact on architecture and the community.


  • Bachelor of Architecture, University of Notre Dame, 1996