R. Brooks Jeffery

Professor Emeritus of Architecture

School of Architecture
R. Brooks Jeffery

Areas of Expertise

  • Heritage conservation
  • Traditional earthen materials and construction systems
  • Vernacular architecture and cultural landscapes
  • History of built environments in Tucson and Southwest

R. Brooks Jeffery is Professor Emeritus of Architecture in the College of Architecture, Planning, and Landscape Architecture (CAPLA) with an emphasis on Heritage Conservation. Since 1988, his teaching, research, and outreach projects have advanced heritage conservation as part of a comprehensive ethic of environmental, cultural, and economic sustainability throughout the world, including the Middle East, Latin America, and the American Southwest.   At CAPLA, he has also held the positions of Associate Dean, Chair of the Heritage Conservation Graduate Program, and Director of the Drachman Institute.  

Jeffery has authored/co-authored over 50 peer-reviewed articles, books and technical reports, including Cross-Cultural Vernacular Landscapes of Southern Arizona (Vernacular Architecture Forum, 2005, co-edited with Laura Hollengreen),  “From Azulejos to Zaguanes:  The Islamic Legacy in the Built Environment of Hispano-America” (Journal of the Southwest, Spring/Summer 2003), A Guide to Tucson Architecture (University of Arizona Press, 2002, with Anne M. Nequette), Joesler & Murphey:  An Architectural Legacy for Tucson (City of Tucson, 1994) and Yemen:  A Culture of Builders (American Architectural Foundation, 1989).  Jeffery has been a principal investigator on numerous grants and contracts from local, regional and national agencies, totaling over $2 million.   

Jeffery also served as Associate Vice President for Research Infrastructure at the University of Arizona’s Office of Research, Innovation & Impact (RII) from 2016 until his retirement in 2022.  He was responsible for RII’s portfolio of research space, new construction, – including the $85M Applied Research Building (ARB), and $99M Grand Challenges Research Building (GCRB) –  core facilities as well as the development of a campus-wide research and innovation infrastructure strategic plan.  Prior to this, he was responsible for advancing innovative research in the arts, humanities, and social sciences, as well as select museums, centers and institutes that report to RII.  Jeffery also served as co-lead of UA Strategic Plan Pillar 3 – Arizona Advantage:  Advancing our Land Grant Mission to Drive Social, Cultural and Economic Impact

In addition to his administration, teaching and research responsibilities, Jeffery collaborates with governmental and civic agencies on preservation issues locally, regionally, and nationally while serving as a board member on the University of Arizona Historic Preservation Advisory Committee, Arizona Historic Sites Review Committee, and the National Council for Preservation Education.  He has received numerous awards including the “Director’s Partnership Award” (2015) and the “Excellence in Resource Stewardship Award” (2006), both from the U.S. National Park Service.  At the state level, he’s been honored with three “Governor’s Heritage Preservation Honor Awards” (2012, 2014, 2022) and Tucson’s highest preservation honor, the “Alene Dunlap Smith and Paul C. Smith Award” (2007) from the Tucson-Pima County Historical Commission for the “high level of dedication and long-term commitment toward historic preservation in our community”. He was also awarded the 2008 Common Ground Award from the Metropolitan Pima Alliance for his involvement in the Wilmot Library Planning Charette advocating for the preservation, rather than the proposed demolition, of a landmark Modern design as part of an overall sustainable development proposal.

Currently, Jeffery is working as a consultant spearheading strategic planning efforts for the non-profit Naco Heritage Alliance and launching the rehabilitation of the 17-acre Camp Naco site.  In 2022, Camp Naco – Arizona’s cornerstone of Buffalo Soldier history –  was listed on the National Trust’s 11 Most Endangered Historic Places and subsequently received $8.1M in grants from the Arizona Governor’s Office and the Mellon Foundation for the rehabilitation of its 20 historic adobe buildings and the development of community programming to sustain them.

Curriculum Vitae:


Select Publications (see Curriculum Vitae for complete list of publications):