IIDA president John Lijewski, FIIDA is a principal at Perkins & Will, New York. IIDA is headquartered in space 13-122 at the Merchandise Mart, Chicago, IL, and can be reached at (888) 799-IIDA; www.iida.org.
As IIDA sees its 10 year anniversary slowly coming to a close, we begin to look forward to the next 10 years as an association. As IIDA's newly-elected president for 2004-2005, I believe it is important to reflect on the accomplishments thus far to continue success for our future. This year marks an important year for IIDA not only because of the anniversary, but also because this fall we will launch our official Member Marketing campaign. In keeping with our goals to retain and gain a more diversified membership, IIDA is embarking on a campaign that promises to reach to all levels of practicing designers in all areas of the country and, more importantly, at the international level. When the presidents of our predecessor organizations—the Council of Federal Interior Designers (CFID), the International Society of Interior Designers (ISID) and the Institute of Business Designers (IBD)—signed the final agreement to unify their memberships in 1994, they were clear that the new association must have an international focus. They became an "International Association of Professional Interior Designers—the Council of Interior Designers (CID)," a bit cumbersome, but clearly setting the mission for the association. The name was quickly changed to the International Interior Design Association, but those directives of professionalism and international inclusiveness remained. Over the years we have vigorously sought and found dedicated designers in cities within and outside the U.S. who agreed to join IIDA's mission and create chapters in their local areas. But now more than ever, during my presidency I intend to focus intently on our international responsibilities. This fall IIDA will launch a Member Marketing campaign and a series of membership retention tools focusing on member benefits through knowledge, value and community. Diversity will be a strategic goal throughout the campaign. By tapping into the association's resources, members can better their career as well as their profession. There is a home in IIDA for students and professionals beginning their career who are looking to tap into a network of design professionals and resources. They are our future leaders. And there is a home for principals and other design influencers looking for an avenue to give back and mentor the direction of the profession. This inclusiveness is not biased by practice area. IIDA's Forums provide a structured exchange of information no matter within which practice sector you specialize: Corporate, Education & Research, Facility Planning & Design, Government, Healthcare, Hospitality, Residential or Retail. In addition, we are working to appeal to designers all over the world and, in turn, we will provide resources for our U.S. members working abroad. By seeking out our international friends, we are only reinforcing the collaborative nature of design. Having spent four years on the International Board and another three at the local level, I can say that this association has come a long way in the past 10 years. As professionals in this diverse industry, IIDA, as the association for design professionals, is the voice that unites us. Our envisioned future for the association for the next 10 years is to be essential in advancing the profession and be indispensable to the global interior design community. With your help, we can achieve that goal.