IIDA Announces Recipients of Annual Star and Titan Awards

Honorees Richard Saul Wurman and Liz Ogbu embody the power of design in today’s global landscape 

IIDA is proud to announce the winners of the 2019 Star Award and Titan Award. Richard Saul Wurman, accomplished author, curator, designer, and information architect, has been named the 2019 Star Award recipient; Liz Ogbu, designer, urbanist, and social innovator, will receive the 2019 Titan Award.

The IIDA Star Award recognizes and celebrates the contributions of a design practitioner or firm that has significantly impacted the interior design profession. The IIDA Titan Award honors outstanding service to the interior design profession by an industry professional, manufacturer, or organization.

Collectively, these awards pay tribute to individuals who have driven progress, enacted change, and championed the importance and impact of design. In its 25th year, IIDA honors both these professionals for their significant contributions to the industry’s evolution and their influence on the future of design and its profound effect on our culture and daily lives.

Richard Saul Wurman’s esteemed professional contributions span decades. Among his many accomplishments: he created and ran the TED conference in 1984 until 2003, and the TEDMED conference from 1995 through 2010. He has chaired a series of other conferences including the International Design Conference in Aspen, California 101, and WWW. Wurman has also written nearly ninety books on architecture, cartography, design, sports, and medicine.

“For nearly 60 years, Richard has worked to make information more accessible, engaging, and enlightening,” said IIDA Executive Vice President and CEO Cheryl S. Durst, Hon. FIIDA. “Whether communicated through books, lectures or conferences, his work has shifted perspectives and expanded the public’s perception of the value of design. We are honored to recognize his significant influence in bringing clarity, enthusiasm, and perspective to conversations on design and beyond.”

Wurman graduated first in his class with the Gold Medal and a B. Arch and M. Arch from the University of Pennsylvania. He studied with and worked for Louis I. Kahn and Charles Eames, and designed and published the first book on Kahn in 1972. He has the gold medal from AIGA, is a Fellow of AIA, a member of Alliance Graphique International, is recognized in the Art Director’s Hall of Fame, and has been honored with the Trinity College Dublin Annual Medal in Discourse. He has also received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Smithsonian’s Cooper Hewitt Museum, a Guggenheim, Graham Fellowships, the Ladislav Sutnar Prize, and Boston Science Museum’s 50th Annual Bradford Washburn Award.

This year’s Titan Award recipient is Liz Ogbu, founder and principal of Studio O, a design firm that works at the intersection of racial and spatial justice. She is an expert on social, sustainable, and spatial innovation in challenged urban environments globally.

“Liz is actively defining the future of our profession through her multidisciplinary work, leveraging her architecture and design prowess to engage with and provide solutions for underserved populations across the globe,” said Durst. “Her work has and will continue to increase wellbeing, create opportunities, and transform lives, and we’re pleased to provide her with the Titan Award to recognize her boundary-pushing ideas, projects, and initiatives.”

From designing shelters for immigrant day laborers in the United States to a water and health social enterprise for low-income Kenyans, Ogbu has a long history of working with communities in need to leverage design to address issues of power and privilege and catalyze deep social impact.

Ogbu earned architecture degrees from Wellesley College and Harvard University. Her projects have been featured in museum exhibitions and profiled in publications globally. Her honors include: IDEO.org Global Fellow, TEDWomen Speaker, and one of Public Interest Design’s Top 100.

The 2019 Star and Titan Awards will be presented during the IIDA Annual Meeting on Sunday, June 9, 2019, at Venue SIX10. For more information, visit www.iida.org.

About IIDA For 25 years, IIDA, the commercial interior design association with global reach, has been a leader in defining, supporting, and enriching the interior design profession. We support design professionals, industry affiliates, educators, students, firms and their clients through our network of 15,000+ members across 58 countries. We advocate for advancements in education, design excellence, legislation, leadership, accreditation, and community outreach to increase the value and understanding of interior design as a profession that enhances business value and positively impacts the health and well-being of people’s lives every day. www.iida.org