In my first few months as ASID president, I couldn’t have imagined how often numbers would be the focus of my work. I mostly envisioned policy and education discussions stemming from theory or values. But from analysis of the industry’s impact in dollars specified and development of the Society’s budget, to a focus on our membership numbers and the allocation of funds for research initiatives, numbers have been an important element of my leadership journey. We’ve even begun speaking of ASID 2.0 and what the future holds for us.
But as we prepare for the chapter Presidents Forum in Washington, D.C., later this week, the number I want to focus on is ONE.
ASID is the ONE organization that represents all aspects of the interior design profession — bridging local connections with national reach, serving small companies and large firms and leading the profession for all who have a role in shaping the places we live, work, shop, learn, play and heal. As the core of the design network, we are uniquely positioned to advance meaningful conversations with designers, industry and the public around evidence-based design, well-being and sustainability, social responsibility and the ways interdisciplinary approaches to business are impacting all specialties of interior design. And we have been that ONE voice for quite some time.
For decades, ASID has been the industry leader in bringing forward evidence of the impact of interior design. First through the ASID Body of Knowledge, later through InformeDesign — a searchable database of design and human behavior — and most recently through the ASID Foundation’s Transform grant program, which provides funding for a range of evidence-based design projects, including healthcare, workplace and more.
In advancing the sustainability movement, ASID leaders were on the front lines driving conversations at the US Green Building Council and were instrumental in the development of LEED for Commercial Interiors. We worked in concert with USGBC to develop REGREEN, a certificate program for the residential sector focused on bringing sustainability to the remodeling industry. And by helping to fund the Healthy Building Network’s Health Product Declaration program, the Society is working to ensure that health and well-being become pillars of sustainable design.
And, as we look at the interior design profession and the business of design, it is important to recognize our leadership in creating a pathway to practice. The Society plays a powerful role in conversations around interior design education, including advocating for the establishment of the National Council for Interior Design Qualification exam for interior design professionals as well as leading collaboration with other organizations about title issues and numerous other state and federal policy issues.
Our board members, staff and volunteer leaders have analyzed the challenges and opportunities present in the marketplace, and we understand the needs of our membership and the interior design industry more broadly. As a result, our research, policy and education initiatives will be designed to deliver meaningful programs for members at their various career stages; to capture, promote and further the impact of design on the human experience; and to create a dynamic, open culture that provides value to our members, the profession and the industry. The strategy you will see play out in the months ahead builds upon our strong past and will drive the changes needed to proactively shape our future. Our new position statement signals the solidarity ASID brings to the whole profession of interior design.
The American Society of Interior Designers believes that design transforms lives. ASID serves the full range of the interior design profession and practice through the Society’s programs, networks and advocacy. We thrive on the strength of cross-functional and interdisciplinary relationships among designers of all specialties, including workplace, healthcare, retail and hospitality, education, institutional and residential. We lead interior designers in shared conversations around topics that matter: from evidenced-based and human-centric design to social responsibility, well-being and sustainability. We showcase the impact of design on the human experience and the value interior designers provide.
ASID was founded nearly 40 years ago when two organizations became one — an anniversary we will recognize in 2015 — but its legacy dates back to the early 1930s. As we celebrate nearly 85 years of industry leadership, we are poised to lead the future of interior design, continuing to integrate the advantages of local connections with national reach, of small firms with big and of the places we live with the places we work, play and heal.
I recognize the unique story of each of the more than 28,000 of you who count yourselves among our membership. But it is the story we write together that will define our future success. We are one profession, one organization, one voice. We are one ASID.
Rachelle Schoessler Lynn, FASID, CID, LEED FELLOW
ASID National President