Community Leaders

 

 

 

 

IIDA Northland Leadership Profiles

Learn why our industry leaders are involved with IIDA Northland.

 

Debra Barnes, IIDA, CID, LEED AP

IIDA Northland President 2013-2014

Q & A with Debra ▼

What do you enjoy most about serving as President of IIDA Northland?

I really enjoy meeting people and engaging with the design community along with the opportunity to play a supportive roll in furthering the interior design profession.  The efforts with NEXT & PIQUE to expose students to the industry and get them excited and engaged in the profession is wonderful. 

I also enjoy advocating for the profession of interior design.  Specifically the work being done to pursue licensure for Interior Design in the State of Minnesota. 

What do you think is the greatest benefit to being a member of IIDA Northland?

The feeling of community when getting together with other members.  It not only affords you the opportunity to network and meet others like yourself but also that ability to gain knowledge when sharing with each other.

What is your most memorable experience while serving on the board of IIDA year to date?

This past year while at NECON I was at a National IIDA event where I was inspired watching the induction of our peers into the College of Fellows.  I also had the opportunity to sit next to someone from the Japan Chapter which was also inspiring to know that IIDA impacts people and supports our profession   all over the world.

Which of our events is your favorite and why?

I really enjoy all of our events.  That being said I particularly enjoyed Fusion this year because we were able to tie it back to our industry with Architecture & Design being the inspiration for the fashion.  That is something that I would like to see carried on into the future. Our field is about Art, Creativity and Science, this event can bring awareness to the public and our community about the great work of interior designers in our region!

 What has changed the most since you became President of IIDA?

I think we have made a lot of progress and gained momentum regarding Licensure for interior design.  It has been great to see the students and professionals getting involved and sharing their voice about the future of our profession.  I am optimistic that we will see the recognition of our profession through licensure in our future!

If you could have dinner with any one person, alive or deceased, who would it be?

If it could be anyone I would say Walt Disney.  He played in a world that was dreamlike yet he was a great innovator.  His legacy of being fantastic at branding and design contributed to his timelessness that is evident today.  (Fun fact, Walt Disney attended the Kansas City Art Institute and School of Design). 

What is your favorite interior space in the world?

A space that appeals to me is one that can be tied back to experiences and memories.  I first think of a restaurant called Felix that is located at the top of the Peninsula Hotel in Hong Kong.  It is a bizarre, wonderful restaurant with great views.  Incredibly the avant-garde designer Philippe Starck actually put his face on the seat of many of the chairs.  Now that is bold design statement!

 

 

Manda Morales, IIDA, CID, LEED AP

IIDA Northland President 2012-2013

Q & A with Manda ▼

What did you enjoy most about serving as President of IIDA Northland?

I loved getting more familiar with the people in our chapter. After being a member of IIDA and practicing for 13+ years you get familiar with the names of people but you don't always know who they are. By serving on our chapter you get to know not only people who serve on the board but volunteers at events, committee members, and the overall membership.

What do you think is the greatest benefit to being a member of IIDA Northland?

Our network. I think that no matter where you are, where your career takes you, or who you work for you can always expect change. IIDA Northland provides for me the foundation to build on. The Northland chapter provides the touch down place for relationships, business development, and career excellence.

What was your most memorable experience while serving on the board of IIDA?

CLC (Chapter Leadership Council) the first year I went. It was a great feeling connecting to other chapters around the country and globe. It was really so cool to see how we are connected to a mission and a global community. There are so many similarities and differences that will push us to the future of design and having the platform of CLC to have those discussions was very inspiring.

Which of our events is your favorite and why?

I'm a sucker for FAB. I love seeing what my friends at other firms are working on. You hear about their work but it's not often you get to see the work completed. I believe in FAB and recognizing good work and the team it took to complete it. You can't beat all the hugs and catching up too.

What is most different about the industry now from when you were President of the Northland Chapter?

I was just president last year so I don't see a huge difference in the industry. However, I do see people busier and having fun at their jobs again which is very encouraging and great to be a part of.

If you could have dinner with any one person, alive or deceased, who would it be?

If I answer this question honestly it would be my brother. I miss him. But if I think of the design world and who I love- it would probably be one of the Futurist painters or sculptors- Marcel Duchamp or Umberto Bocchioni. Wouldn't be incredible to just hear what they all said at a cocktail party back then?

What is you favorite interior space in the world?

I die every time I see Yabu Pushelberg's work. I still email photos of projects that send me spinning to my friends. My heart is in hospitality, I can't deny it.

 

 

Deanne Erpelding

IIDA Northland President 2009-2010

Q & A with Deanne ▼

What did you enjoy most about serving as President of IIDA Northland?

Having the opportunity to work with such a great board and represent our local Chapter at the Chapter Leadership Conference (CLC) in Chicago. I recall being at CLC and several other chapters coming up to me saying they want to model their chapter after IIDA Northland. Each board succession paves the way strategically for the incoming board. I found it exciting to continue with that set vision, yet integrate new perspectives and ideas with the current board and membership feedback. Being President of IIDA Northland was very rewarding and the relationships I've developed locally and nationally are invaluable.

What do you think is the greatest benefit to being a member of IIDA Northland?

The network and community you are a part of. I landed my internship and first job because of IIDA. Whether you are coming into the profession or have been practicing for 20+ years, I believe everyone has something to gain and learn from being involved and a member of IIDA.

What was your most memorable experience while serving on the board of IIDA?

Winning Small Chapter of the Year when I was President-Elect in 2009.

Which of our events is your favorite and why?

That's a tough one. I love both Fusion and FAB, but FAB is my favorite. It's an evening focused on celebrating design and an opportunity for all of us to gather over dinner and recognize great work. I always leave FAB feeling inspired and honored to be part of IIDA and our local design community. I also love the fact that other chapters around the country have modeled their chapter awards around FAB. What a compliment to the committee members who developed FAB and made it what it is today.

What is most different about the industry now from when you were President of the Northland Chapter?

I don't see any major differences in our industry and how we practice from when I was last President in 2010. I do see more optimism and excitement on what the future holds. There is momentum and more activity. Firms are busy. I also see technology continuing to reshape the overall design process.

If you could have dinner with any one person, alive or deceased, who would it be?

Steve Jobs. I think he was a genius.

What is your favorite interior space in the world?

I have many favorite interior spaces for all different reasons, but focusing on interior spaces in the world that I have physically experienced, I would say the Hall of Mirrors at the Palace of Versailles. One cannot enter that space without saying without saying "wow". The exquisite detail and craft of that space amazes me.

 

 

Mike Sullivan

IIDA Northland President 2008-2009

Q & A with Mike ▼

What did you enjoy most about serving as President of IIDA Northland?

I enjoyed the camaraderie that we, as Board and Committee members, developed as a group and was constantly amazed at seeing what we could accomplish when we shared the same objectives.

What do you think is the greatest benefit to being a member of IIDA Northland?

As a practitioner in the field, it is very difficult to always find the time to see one's colleagues and share individual experiences. The events through IIDA offer a great venue for this.

What was your most memorable experience while serving on the board of IIDA?

I was proud to be part of the Board as we initially developed our mission for the Northland Chapter. It is rewarding to see that it continues to this day.

Which of our events is your favorite and why?

I especially like the FAB Awards. I'm always interested in seeing the great work this design community is producing.

What is most different about the industry now from when you were President of the Northland Chapter?

I can't say that I see any measurable difference. We continue to be confronted with the same opportunities and challenges, perhaps just at a faster pace.

If you could have dinner with any one person, alive or deceased, who would it be?

My father. I am now older than he ever lived to be, and I would love to share stories with him.

What is you favorite interior space in the world?

Although long gone, I can still picture the first fort I ever built with my friend Roger who lived down the block in our neighborhood. I decided I was going to be in charge of the interior. I lugged a carpet remnant from a nearby construction site, and found some spare fabric from my mom. I can remember sitting in that fort afterward quite content with the results. I'm sure it was the only fort in the neighborhood with upholstered walls – and it was awesome!

 

 

Scott Hierlinger, IIDA, LEED AP, ID+C

President Elect - International Board of Directors at IIDA 2014-2015
IIDA Northland President 2007-2008

Q & A with Scott ▼

What did you enjoy most about serving as President of IIDA Northland?

I enjoyed how my involvement allowed me make connections at a deeper level.  I was able to see  the greater potential and pure strength of both our local industry and local chapter.

My involvement allowed greater opportunities to grow even more positive connections locally and nationally resulting in a deeper level of engagement with your peers.

What do you think is the greatest benefit to being a member of IIDA Northland?

The opportunities that are present on a local level were a huge asset and prepared me for what I am doing at a national level today.  Each and every experience provided me a greater base for my current position (Vice President of IIDA National).

What was your most memorable experience while serving on the board of IIDA?

When the IIDA Northland Chapter won the Small Chapter of the Year Award in 2008/2009.  It was great to see all of the hard work and dedication of the board and its members really come to fruition and be recognized nationally.

Which of our events is your favorite and why?

Fusion because of how well it showcases the diverse personality and awesome creativity of our local industry.  It is an opportunity for our local industry to better fully express our own creativity through the process .

 What has changed the most since you became President of IIDA?

I have really enjoyed watching the continued growth and prosperity of the Northland board and its membership.  The level of attendance and quality of the programs continue to raise the bar locally and nationally. The future of IIDA Northland will be exciting to watch.

If you could have dinner with any one person, alive or deceased, who would it be?

I would say Jesus Christ only because I am both a spiritual and linear thinker.  It would afford me the opportunity to ask him any question for which I wanted greater clarification and enact positive change quickly. 

What is your favorite interior space in the world?

I tend to gravitate to historical spaces because I enjoy antiquities and the great history that surrounds these spaces.  Currently, I would say Cipriani 42nd street in New York.  I have had the opportunity to attend several events there in the past and it is truly remarkable.