comings & goings | Jun 5, 2023 |
Robert Rufino is leaving Hearst, Fisher & Paykel’s new COO and more

Summer is almost here, and design professionals are on the move. Read on for BOH’s monthly roundup of arrivals and departures in design, manufacturing, media and throughout the industry.

To the Trade
Luxury outdoor furniture brand Brown Jordan announced that Gene Moriarty will step down as president and CEO later this year. During Moriarty’s 18-year tenure, the 78-year-old company has reemerged as a powerhouse designer and manufacturer of indoor and outdoor furniture, introducing award-winning collections, establishing partnerships with several leading designers, expanding and modernizing the manufacturing footprint, and opening four new retail showrooms for the company’s six-brand portfolio. Moriarty remains an equity shareholder of Brown Jordan and will remain CEO until a successor is chosen.

Form Kitchens appointed Beth Brenner as the head of business development. Brenner brings more than 30 years of advertising, sales and marketing experience to the brand, most recently serving as the president of custom cabinet company Semihandmade, where she led a team of 80 people and helped them navigate supply chain issues. In her new role, Brenner will focus on growing the Form Kitchens trade program.

North Carolina–based fabric company Glen Raven announced the retirement of Greg Rosendale, director of indoor and contract markets. Rosendale had an 18-year career at Glen Raven and nearly 40 years industry experience, where he served different roles in the sales, contract and design departments. Market manager Jason Burgess has stepped in to handle Rosendale’s responsibilities, including overseeing sales and customer relationships for the indoor market and working closely with the design, marketing and sales teams.

Montana-based digital textile printing studio and manufacturer Western Sensibility appointed Chelsea von Hasseln as director of surface design and Rio Chantel as director of brand strategy and storytelling. With over a decade of industry experience, von Hasseln specializes in original print development, repeats and colorways, and spent the past 11 years as the community manager for design service companies Pattern Observer and the Textile Design Lab. Chantel brings more than 10 years of experience in photography, multimedia art and brand strategy, and has been doing freelance photography for her own company, Rio Chantel Productions, for the past seven years.

Media & PR
After holding several roles in the shelter magazine world since the late 1980s—most recently as senior style director at House BeautifulRobert Rufino is leaving his full-time role at Hearst Magazines to launch his own business. Rufino’s career as a stylist and tastemaker has included roles at Elle Decor, Architectural Digest, The New York Times Magazine and Harper’s Bazaar; he has also worked in retail design and merchandising, serving as vice president of creative services and visual merchandising for Tiffany & Co. for more than a decade. At House Beautiful, his role included discovering new talent, bringing in interior design projects and producing most of the brand’s photo shoots. He also created a column called The Rufino Report, which featured a curated monthly selection of products and trends. In the next chapter of his career, Rufino will work directly with designers and brands to develop their projects and style them for photography. He will continue to contribute stories to Hearst and hopes to write a book about his career.

New York–based communications and digital marketing agency UpSpring promoted Jana Montero to senior vice president of culture, content and business development. Montero joined the firm 11 years ago after holding editorial roles at Hospitality Design and BizBash magazines. In her new role, she will continue to serve as the company’s editor in chief, lead new business prospecting and engage with the architecture, construction and interior design industries.

Design & Architecture
Oklahoma-based interdisciplinary design studio Blue Star Integrative appointed Michal Biery as the firm’s new president and J. Kyle Casper as design director, a new position for the company. Biery brings more than 30 years of experience to the firm, most recently serving as a senior architect at Benham in Oklahoma City after holding other leadership positions at local firms. In his new role, Biery will oversee local operations and collaborate with leadership to set strategic plans, budgets and company goals. Casper, who brings over 25 years of architectural experience from institutions like Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the United Nations, will remain principal of his own 22-year-old firm Casper Design and Development in addition to his new role, which will tap into his background in environmental responsibility and personal connection to Native American culture and communities as a member of the Nansemond Tribal Bass family.

Minneapolis-based architecture and design firm Nelson Worldwide welcomed Brandon Page as the vice president of brand communications and environmental graphic design, and Faith Huddleston as studio leader of lifestyle, wellness and retail at the company’s Cincinnati office. With more than 25 years in the design, brand and retail community, Page has worked across the country with well-known names such as Target, Tiffany & Co., Nike and Home Depot. In his new role, Page will bolster the firm’s creative leadership and strategic development. Huddleston brings over 20 years of experience to the firm, previously working on projects for Neiman Marcus, Bath & Body Works, Starwood Retail Partners and the University of Dayton, and most recently serving as director of creative activation at design services company Tenfold. In her new role, she will be responsible for shaping business growth for Nelson Worldwide throughout Minneapolis and the surrounding region.

London-based design firm Studio Indigo promoted associates Lyne Arbid and Olga Fox to associate directors to co-lead the interior design team. Arbid has been with the company for more than six years, managing the interiors department and overseeing the yachting department. Fox brings over 15 years of industry experience to her new role and has been with the studio since 2022, managing high-profile commercial developments.

San Francisco–based design firm HSH Interiors announced Ainsley Thomson Bowen as senior designer. Bowen most recently worked at Colorado-based Kelly & Stone Architects, where she specialized in large-scale residential projects across North America.

Maryland-based architecture and planning firm Hord Coplan Macht promoted Ilijana Soldan to sustainability manager and lead of the sustainability action team. Soldan brings over five years of architecture experience, most recently working as an architect at North Carolina–based firm Liquid Design before joining HCM three years ago. In her new role, Soldan hopes to bridge the gap between implementing green practices and the practical application in building design.

Seattle-based design collective and hospitality firm The Society announced Casey Scalf as director. Scalf has more than 20 years of experience in the design industry, previously serving as the design principal for Portland-based Ankrom Moisan Architects and most recently as the principal designer at The Society. In his new role, Scalf will focus on strategic leadership, key partnerships, and project selection and execution.

Retail & Manufacturing
Appliance manufacturer Fisher & Paykel welcomed Eli Winkler as COO for the U.S. market. Winkler joins the brand from home decor retailer Smith & Noble, where he served as president and previously held leadership roles at globally renowned brands including Sur La Table and La-Z-Boy. In his new role, Winkler will be based out of the headquarters in Costa Mesa, California, and will oversee product operations and teams for both Fisher & Paykel and DCS Appliances.

Amish furniture company DutchCrafters named Tina Marie Carder the showroom manager of the Alpharetta, Georgia, location. Carder has over 11 years of experience in e-commerce and retail store management, most recently serving as the store manager of Dance Fashions Warehouse in Atlanta.

French furniture and interior design firm Liaigre appointed Andy Sich to its New York sales team. Sich has a background in corporate wellness consulting, commercial sales and luxury furniture, most recently serving as an executive sales rep at Avenue Road and Shaw Industries.

California-based reupholstery business Kay Chesterfield hired Rachel Fletcher as the director of operations. Fletcher has more 15 years of experience in upholstery; she is the owner of Knox Upholstery in Knoxville, Tennessee, and has served as president of the National Upholstery Association since 2019. In her new role, Fletcher will oversee production innovations within Kay Chesterfield’s contract reupholstery business and workplace pillows capability.

Furnishings-focused website development company Jola Interactive appointed Shelia Butler as director of operations and Vaughn English as an account manager. Butler brings more than 25 years of experience in the wholesale manufacturing, retail and consulting industries and co-founded two wholesale manufacturing companies, most recently serving as the chief operating officer at Texas-based furniture manufacturer The Arrangement. In her new role, Butler will oversee day-to-day business and work on building customer retention and talent management. English, who brings more than a decade of experience in account management roles, joins the company from advertising services company MediaLab 3D Solutions.

New Jersey–based floor manufacturer Lucida Surfaces promoted Jacob Herzog to regional sales manager. Herzog has been with the company for the past four years, growing his sales skills and in-depth knowledge of its products and services. As a regional sales manager, Herzog will lead and mentor the sales team and oversee the North Jersey and New York regions.

Industry Organizations
The International Society of Furniture Designers elected 12 new industry colleagues to serve on its board of directors. Liz Moore, furniture designer at Otto & Moore, will continue as the chairperson of the board; Steve Wilcox, president at Furnishings Design Inc., will remain as the ISFD president; and Jack Hendrix, partner at accounting firm Hendrix Barney & Co., will stay on as the treasurer, assisting executive director David Blair as part of the executive team. New board members include Melanie Boggs, founder of Brian Boggs Chairmakers; Matthew Carr, owner of furniture design and production business Carr House LLC; Scott Coley, lead designer and owner of D. Scott Coley Designs; Joe Dunaske, a designer at Stickley Furniture; Annina Fremgen, a designer at Caracole; Tammy C. Nagem, president and CEO of High Point Market Authority; Jake Hanson, a designer and engineer at L. & J.G. Stickley Inc.; Shannon Lookabill, vice president of product development at Universal Furniture; Cory Martin, a designer at Bernhardt Furniture Company; John Muldoon, owner of North Carolina–based retailer CohabSpace; Fred Schubert, director of product development at Global Home USA and owner of Fred Schubert Design Inc.; and Frederic Spector, owner of Frederic Spector Design Studio.

Real estate network and nonprofit education and research organization Urban Land Institute appointed Diane Hoskins as global chair for the next two years. Hoskins is currently the co-chief executive officer of architecture and planning firm Gensler. In her new role, Hoskins will help support real estate professionals in solving land-use challenges and educate others on the best practices for equitable and sustainable land use.

Homepage image: ©Josefmicic/Adobe Stock

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