Stephen Zawmoe Shwe was born and raised in Ahlone township of Yangon. After attending one year at Rangoon Institute of Technology he went on to the United States and received his B.A. in Architecture degree from University of California, Berkeley and M.Arch. degree from Columbia University where he won prominent design awards including the SOM Foundation Architecture Fellowship and the AIA Allwork Scholarship Award. He worked for seven years as an Associate at Tecny Group in New York, where he oversaw the design and construction of numerous residential and commercial projects. He started out SPiNE Architects office of Myanmar in 2003. He now has 23 years of experience in architecture, interior design and project management and has completed well over 200 projects through construction. He has been contributing for the architecture profession by giving out seminars to young architects and teaching architecture students. A few cyclone shelters he designed were built throughout the delta area after Cyclone Nargis and he has been donating his time and knowledge for designing new contemporary Buddhist monasteries and meditation centers.