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IIDA Announces 2021 Leaders Virtual Event
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CHICAGO — IIDA is pleased to announce a new ideation of the annual Leaders Breakfast: the 2021 Leaders Virtual. More inclusive due to its virtual nature, the IIDA Leaders Virtual event, supported by International Benefactor Herman Miller, will celebrate the importance of design in the global marketplace and honor seasoned and emerging industry professionals who are influencing the legacy of design at large.

Launched in New York in 1989 by Jeannie Bochette of Steelcase, the IIDA Leaders Breakfast series began as a single event. The goal was to introduce IIDA to the business world as a leading association of commercial interior design and to inform IIDA members about the major issues affecting them and the industry. The event established a forum where members and their clients could participate and network with their peers.

Due to the past year’s changing landscape, the Leaders Virtual event will take place in eight cities simultaneously, further expanding its reach and impact, with the in-person Leaders Breakfast formally returning in 2022. Elaine Welteroth, co-host of CBS’s “The Talk,” will serve as this year’s marquee keynote speaker, joined in conversation with IIDA Executive Vice President and CEO, Cheryl S. Durst, Hon. FIIDA, to discuss leadership, the wherewithal of women, and equity, diversity and inclusion.

"Hosting our Leaders Virtual in a public, digital capacity represents everything we are working toward—a global connectedness and increased accessibility to interested participants across varying geographies and capacities,” said Durst. "We’re honored to have Elaine join us as this year’s keynote. Her leadership in the diversity and equity space is an example for all and will showcase how the power of design transcends beyond our industry.”

Aside from co-hosting “The Talk,” Welteroth is also a New York Times bestselling author, award-winning journalist, and former Editor-in-Chief of Teen Vogue. She is known for her groundbreaking work at the helm of Teen Vogue where she used her position to prioritize diversity and social justice coverage. In 2020, Welteroth was appointed Cultural Ambassador for Michelle Obama’s “When We All Vote” initiative and helped launch the “15 Percent Pledge,” a non-profit advocacy organization that recruits major retailers including Sephora and Macy’s to commit at least 15% of their purchasing power to Black-owned businesses.

The event will take place on Friday, September 17 at 10 a.m. Central via the Socio platform and feature regional programming from eight cities, including: Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Houston, Los Angeles, New York, and San Francisco, as well as the Interior Designers of Canada (IDC). Open to IIDA members and non-members, including those outside of the design industry, participants will have the opportunity to virtually network with other guests in breakout rooms, attend the keynote, as well as participate in the Leadership of Excellence award presentation.

Tickets for the event will go on sale in late July and will be $50 for non-members, $30 for members, and $10 for student members. Sign up here for updates on the event and to receive notification when tickets go on sale.

About Herman Miller
Herman Miller is a globally recognized leader in design. Since its inception in 1905, the company’s innovative, problem-solving designs and furnishings have inspired the best in people wherever they live, work, learn, heal, and play. In 2018, Herman Miller created Herman Miller Group, a purposefully selected, complementary family of brands that includes Colebrook Bosson Saunders, Design Within Reach, Geiger, HAY, Maars Living Walls, Maharam, naughtone, and Nemschoff. Guided by a shared purpose—design for the good of humankind—Herman Miller Group shapes places that matter for customers while contributing to a more equitable and sustainable future for all. For more information visit www.hermanmiller.com/about-us.

Press Contact:
Katherine Boncher
Jo Communications