Born 1976 in Jersualem Omer Arbel graduated from the University of Waterloo School of Architecture in 2000, and, after apprenticeships with various architects, founded OAO in 2005. He is the recipient of various high profile awards including the Ron Thom award for Early Design Achievement and a D&AD Yellow Pencil Yearbook entry.  He has served on numerous judging and advisory panels and has given lectures and tutorials at the University of British Columbia School of Architecture and at the School of Constructed Environments at Parsons.