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IIDA Names University of Minnesota's Tasoulla Hadjiyanni as Annual Educator Diversity Award Recipient
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CHICAGO — The IIDA Foundation in partnership with Interior Design Educators Council Foundation (IDECF), is pleased to announce Tasoulla Hadjiyanni, Ph.D. has received this year’s IIDA Educator Diversity Award. Sponsored by KI, the annual award recognizes and celebrates an educator who is contributing to the advancement of racial and ethnic diversity in the interior design industry.

“Dr. Hadjiyanni’s dedication and depth of passion for the work she does shone through during the review process,” said IIDA Foundation Chair Tara Headley, Associate IIDA. “Her courses, as evidenced by recommendations from her students and peers, genuinely prepare the next generation of designers to think critically about culture, globalization, and marginalized communities, which is vital in today’s world.”

Hadjiyanni is Northrop Professor of interior design at the University of Minnesota. She holds a Bachelor of Architecture degree and a Master of Science in Urban Development and Management from Carnegie Mellon University and a doctoral degree from the University of Minnesota. For over twenty years, Hadjiyanni has championed interior design as a fundamental partner in efforts to eliminate racial disparities in health, income, and education, through her award-winning pedagogies, such as digital storytelling; research, such as her book The Right to Home, which helps define the impact of interior design on the lives of immigrants and minorities; and websites, such as Culturally Enriched Communities that empower interior designers to build a more equitable world.

“In today’s social climate, Dr. Hadjiyannis’ work has been influential in the discussions surrounding the role of design in physical and mental well-being, particularly as the pandemic continues to disproportionately impact communities of color,” said Bryan Ballegeer, VP Education Markets, KI.

IIDA Educator Diversity Award submissions were reviewed by Gilbert Broco, IIDA, VP culture & design, CI Group; IIDA Foundation Chair Tara Headley, Associate IIDA, interior designer, Hendrick; James Kerrigan, FIIDA, global interiors design principal, Jacobs; and Carl Matthews, interior design department head, Fay Jones School of Architecture, University of Arkansas.

Hadjiyanni will be honored with the award, which includes $5,000 from the IIDA Foundation, during the Interior Design Educators Council (IDEC) Virtual Annual Conference on Wednesday, February 24. Hadjiyanni plans to use the award to strengthen dialogues around increasing Native representation in interior design education.

For more information about the IIDA Foundation Diversity Award, please contact foundation@iida.org.

Press Contact:
Ciara Merouan
Jo Chicago Communications