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Elliot Paul Rothman, was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania on April 10, 1935. He was graduated in 1953 from Taylor Allderdice High School. In 1958, Elliot earned his Bachelor of Architecture degree from Carnegie Mellon University where he first studied watercolor under Raymond Simboli. Later, he was influenced by M. Murray Leibowitz, an architect and watercolorist who told him that there are many colors in everything. Elliot received his master's degree in City Planning in 1960 and his master's degree in City Planning in Urban Design in 1961, both from the Harvard Graduate School of Design. He served an appointment as Associate Professor of Architecture at Harvard from 1967 to 1969. From 1966 to 1969, he was a founding associate of Benjamin Thompson and Associates.

In 1969, he and Martha L. Rothman, FAIA formed Rothman Partners Architects in Boston, Massachusetts, a firm focused on the design of healthcare, academic, and research facilities. In 2005 their firm merged with Anshen+Allen, an international architectural firm with the same specialized practices. Elliot is a member of the American Institute of Architects and the American College of Healthcare Architects. He has lectured and presented his firm's architectural projects at three International Congresses of Design and Health in Trondheim, Norway; Stockholm, Sweden; and Montreal, Canada. He and his wife, Martha, have lived in Boston's South End for 49 years and now reside in Brooklyn New York. They have three children: Sabine, Adam, and Erik.

Elliot currently consults in architecture, urban design, planning, and specializes in healthcare facilities. He continues to consult and paint.