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From the International President

Updated: Jul 27, 2023

Thought Leadership, Member Recognition, and More!

Cynthia Hirsch Ortiz, RDI

Greetings Members!


We are continuing to grow and add value to the Institute membership. If you have ideas or would like to become more involved, please email me directly -- chirsch@retaildesigninstitute.org.


Lots coming up and going on, so let’s get to it.


Thought Leadership Series Debuts on our Website!


The Institute counts many talented and influential members among our ranks. And we’re excited to announce that we have harnessed one such member – Eric Feigenbaum, Media RDI – who is kicking off our series with his piece on retail leadership. Eric has worked on every side of the retail industry from retailer, to consultant, to educator, to journalist. Check out his article here and don’t forget to add your comments right there on the site. (You will need to be logged in.) Eric will be heading up this series every month, however, if you have a thought leadership column you’d like to submit for consideration, please contact Janet Groeber in the International Office -- janetg@retaildesigninstitute.org.


Design Resource Directory Gets a Revamp

More website news. We’ve reworked the Design Resource Directory on our site to include those members whose companies offer products and services for selling environments. You can take a peek here before it goes live. Keep in mind, this area is still under construction and once live, users will be able to access additional features. Professional, Associate, Allied, Trade, and Media members are eligible for a basic, one-year listing at no charge. And for those who want their listing to stand out, we’ve included an upgrade option. For $250 annually, add your logo, company description, direct links to your website, and up to two contacts, with email and phone. Janet Groeber in the International Office will be following up by email to help you navigate how to get listed and the upgrade package. In the meanwhile, you can directly contact her -- janetg@retaildesigninstitute.org -- with all questions about directory listings.


Member Recognition: Timeline and Guidelines

After a two-year pandemic pause, we're reviving a time-honored tradition that recognizes the contributions of members. On July 11, members will have a chance to nominate fellow members for Professional Member of the Year and Trade Member of the Year recognition. Watch your inbox for an official ballot. Beyond the Professional and Trade member recognition, the Institute introduced a “Certificate of Appreciation” several years ago. The Certificate of Appreciation offers each Chapter the opportunity to recognize one individual from either Student, Associate, Allied, Educator, Life or Media membership level for their contribution to the Institute. Of those nominated and recognized within each Chapter, the International Awards Committee will select a single member in good standing for recognition with the International Certificate of Appreciation. Due to the nature of the award, only the Chapter’s Board of Directors may submit nominations.


Officer Elections at International and Chapter Level

The International organization will be electing a new President, Vice President, Secretary and Treasurer for a two-year term commencing November 1, 2022 and ending October 21, 2024. Chapters electing new officers for the same time period are: Atlanta | Southeast; New York; Northern California; Ohio and Pacific Northwest.


International Officer Election Schedule for 2022-2024 Term July 6, Call for Nominations, due July 30. August 1, Request to Accept Nomination (for those nominated), responses due by August 8. August 10, Executive Officer Voting Begins. Ballots due September 7. (New Executive Officers will be announced September 16 online at retaildesignistitute.org.) November 1, Term begins.


Chapter Elections Schedule for 2022-2024 Term (Atlanta | Southeast, New York, Northern California, Ohio and Pacific Northwest Chapters) September 16, Call for Nominations, due October 3. October 4, Request to Accept Nominations, due October 10. October 11, Chapter Officer ballots distributed. Voting Begins. October 24 to 28, Results reviewed and confirmed. November 1, New officers announced. Term begins.


Wishing you a wonderful Canada Day and Independence Day!


Cynthia Hirsch Ortiz, RDI International President Retail Design Institute

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