IIDA is pleased to announce the induction of nine IIDA members into the prestigious IIDA College of Fellows. This year’s group of all-women honorees are Ronnie Belizaire, FIIDA, corporate real estate manager, Daimler AG; Jennifer Graham, FIIDA, principal, corporate interiors, Perkins+Will; Catherine Heath, FIIDA, AIA, founder and managing principal, HYL Architecture; Angie Lee, FIIDA, AIA, partner and design director of interiors, FX Collaborative; EJ Lee, FIIDA, design director, Gensler; Karen Muraoka, FIIDA, principal, Karen Muraoka Interior Design; Ana Pinto-Alexander, FIIDA, principal, director of health interiors, HKS; Kay Sargent, FIIDA, ASID, senior principal and director of workplace, HOK; and Mavis Wiggins, FIIDA, managing executive and studio creative director, TPG Architecture.
“The IIDA College of Fellows honors members who have made a significant impact, not only within their firms but in their local and global communities,” said IIDA Executive Vice President and CEO Cheryl S. Durst, Hon. FIIDA. “We’re proud to bestow this year’s honor on nine extraordinary designers, a group that represents women in leadership in a powerful, resonant way. Each of them goes above and beyond to break barriers, inspire their peers, and pave the way for others to create meaningful change through design.”
Admission to the College of Fellows is the highest honor given by IIDA to its professional members, recognizing those whose activities and efforts have benefitted and enhanced the organization, and whose work has significantly influenced the design profession. For more information about the IIDA College of Fellows, visit www.iida.org.
Ronnie Belizaire, FIIDA Ronnie Belizaire blends both business acumen and design expertise as a corporate real estate manager for Daimler, helping to guide the company’s organizational goals for its various business entities through the strategic positioning of corporate real estate assets in the Americas. Belizaire is an experienced project manager and designer with more than five million square feet of architectural, interiors, and industrial projects managed and delivered during her 15-year career. She is a dedicated IIDA volunteer whose previous service includes IIDA Georgia Chapter President from 2013-2014 and IIDA Foundation Chair from 2017-2019. Professionally, Belizaire has completed projects for numerous clients, including well-known Fortune 500 companies, helping them transform their organizations through the built environment.
Jennifer Graham, FIIDA For more than 30 years, Jennifer Graham’s success has come from her unique approach of incorporating mentorship into project management. As a bold champion for DEI, social purpose, and sustainability, Graham brings these issues to the forefront in her client work and community service as a principal at Perkins+Will, a renowned architecture and design firm. In 2009, she founded LMNOP NYC, Inc., an organization offering networking and affordable continuing education credits to designers. Following LMNOP’s acquisition by the IIDA NY Chapter, Graham became IIDA NY’s vice president of action and 2021 catalyst chair. Native to Barbados, the influence of Graham’s family is evident in everything she does; from fulfilling her father’s own dream of working in architecture to epitomizing the resolve and relentless pursuit of knowledge passed on through her grandmother. Her character and record demonstrate her advocacy and commitment to both the design and global communities.
Catherine Heath, FIIDA, AIA. Catherine Heath is a seasoned architect and designer with significant accomplishments in design and workplace strategy in her 30-year career. A prominent leader in the Washington, D.C. real estate community, Heath has been fortunate to work under the direction of outstanding mentors who have influenced her approach to design. She recognizes the importance of mentorship in the development of the next generation of design talent and has established a mentorship program at her own firm, in addition to serving as a mentor to several students. As a practice leader, she has built a studio of 22 talented designers with an impressive portfolio of completed works at HYL Architecture. In just six years, her firm has designed more than 100 projects in 25 cities internationally, and regularly competes with top firms globally.
Angie Lee, FIIDA, AIA. Angie Lee leads an award-winning interiors practice at FX Collaborative, providing strategic vision and oversight for interior environments across a wide range of scales for both commercial and residential project types. With more than 28 years of experience, Lee uses a multifaceted approach that integrates emotional design narrative, technical precision, and artistic intuition in her work. Born in Seoul, Korea, and raised in the Midwest by parents who promoted science and music, Lee continues to meld art and technology in her approach to architecture and interior design. Committed to an inclusive philosophy of design, Angie is a registered architect in New York, serves on the editorial advisory board of /CFF, and is President-Elect of the IIDA International Board of Directors.
EJ Lee, FIIDA. As a Design Director at Gensler, Lee is continually finding innovative and inspirational solutions that add value to the spaces she designs. For nearly 30 years, she has worked with a multitude of space types for some of the world’s most influential companies in finance, media, publishing, retail, and commercial development. With an elegant and timeless design approach, Lee provides long-lasting value to each of her clients which include Morgan Stanley, Deutsche Bank, New York Times, Nomura, and the American Kennel Club. She brings a sense of humanity for highly complex and multi-disciplinary organizations and has a passion for collaboration and engagement to deliver memorable design work which has been featured in prominent global publications. Lee has worked as an associate professor at Pratt Institute and continues to mentor young talent, exemplifying her dedication to shaping the next generation of designers.
Karen Muraoka, FIIDA. Karen Muraoka began her design career in 1982 at Architects Hawaii Ltd. in Honolulu and continued there until she opened her own firm, Karen Muraoka Interior Design, specializing in healthcare design in 2011. She then moved to Japan, working with a large and innovative medical center group, that gave Muraoka the freedom and encouragement to explore new avenues of healthcare design. Now back in Hawaii, Muraoka continues to run her practice, while also participating as a frequent juror at both NeoCon and healthcare design conferences. She has been involved with IIDA since 2001, having grown as a leader, receiving the 2019 Legacy Award from the IIDA Hawaii Pacific Chapter, furthering her a pathway to share her passion with other aspiring designers.
Ana Pinto-Alexander, FIIDA. Ana Pinto-Alexander is principal and director of HKS’ global health practice, ranked among the top five by Modern Healthcare, where she provides leadership as an instrumental member of the firm’s Leadership Council, driving strategic vision and planning. With more than 36 years of experience, Pinto-Alexander’s devotion to evidence-informed design has anchored her belief that holistic healing environments improve the experience for the patients, families, and staff. Pinto-Alexander’s childhood in Colombia and extensive international travel have influenced a unique design perspective based on research and empathy. Pinto Alexander’s interior design firm of 22 employees, Maregatti Interiors, was acquired by HKS in 2011. In 2009, she was recognized as one of the “25 Most Influential People in Healthcare Design” by Healthcare Design magazine and in 2020 she received the HiP Healthcare Award from Interior Design magazine.
Kay Sargent, FIIDA, ASID. Kay Sargent has more than 35 years of experience and is an award-winning designer who has worked with several Fortune 500 companies to optimize their global real estate portfolios and create innovative work environments based on their unique organizational DNA. As Co-Director of HOK’s workplace team, a practice that supports organizations undertaking multiple projects in various locations, and a member of HOK’s Board of Directors, Sargent is responsible for helping clients redefine how, when, and where their people work. Prior to joining HOK, Sargent served as director of workplace strategies for Lendlease; VP of A&D and workplace strategies for Teknion; and as a principal for interior architects in Washington, D.C. Sargent currently serves on the AVIXA Board of Directors; the National ASID Foundation Research Taskforce, the IWBI Mind Advisory Team, the Advisory Board for WorkDesign Magazine, and was recently appointed to the George Washington University Customer Experience Certificate Program Advisory Council.
Mavis Wiggins, FIIDA. Mavis Wiggins has more than 30 years of experience as an interior designer and team leader. During her tenure, she has developed a large and multi-faceted workplace portfolio with an emphasis in financial services. Wiggins believes that understanding nuance is the key to properly caring for each client and draws upon her experience and evolving vision to design successful spaces that create better experiences for those who use them. As managing executive and studio creative director at TPG Architecture, she articulates a client’s unstated goals, ensuring the completed design reflects their unique ideal. In 2018, she was recognized as an honoree at the IIDA Leaders Breakfast in New York.