Shad D. Johnsen, CKD has spent much of his early schooling as an artist and draftsman. Later, while attending college for a degree in architecture, he worked for a cabinet manufacturer assembling cabinets, then on to a finish carpenter.
He moved to Anchorage, Alaska in August 1995 and took a job as an appliance salesman. In June of 1996 he was moved into the kitchen department, because, he was told, that he was very "detail oriented". He began designing kitchen and bathroom cabinet projects by hand with the drafting skills learned in school. After one year of selling cabinetry, countertops, hardware, tile, and plumbing, Shad began a correspondence course with the National Kitchen & Bath Association (NKBA) on kitchen design. He successfully completed the course and in September 2000 he passed the exam to become a CKD, Certified Kitchen Designer.
In October 1998, Shad moved to a smaller, more specialized design firm, where he expanded his horizons into flooring, lighting, window coverings, wall coverings, and more. He began getting involved in complete kitchen and bathroom projects, especially remodels. He also gained experience presenting seminars on kitchens and kitchen design at the three different home shows held annually in Anchorage. He went back to work for his former employer to train designers and manage the kitchen and flooring department.
In 2001 Shad helped to organize a new subchapter in Alaska for the NKBA. He acted as the VP of Programs helping to facilitate association chapter meetings. He moved down to St. George, Utah in September 2002 and began organizing the Southwest Desert subchapter. Currently, he is President of that chapter.
In February 2003 Shad started his own company, Distinctive Design Kitchen & Bath to provide professional kitchen and bathroom design services for the rapidly growing area, from Cedar City, Utah through Las Vegas, Nevada. Shad is now providing professional kitchen & bath design services, and materials such as: Cabinetry, lighting, countertops, appliances, hardware, and more.
In January 2005, Shad established a corporation called SS Johnsen & Associates, Incorporated. He changed the name of his kitchen and bathroom business to Portrait Kitchens for ease of spelling and remembrance. His company now has appliances, cabinetry, countertops, lighting, hardware, specialty flooring, and plumbing.