As a new class of future industry leaders graduates the New York School of Interior Design this month, Luxe Interiors + Design Executive Vice President and Managing Director Kate Kelly Smith will be recognized for her decades-long dedication to championing the creative world of design and its catalysts.
Together with author, design consultant and magazine veteran Newell Turner, Smith—who also acts as chief sales officer of SANDOW Design Group—has been nominated to receive NYSID’s 2023 Honorary Doctor of Fine Arts.
The honorary degree not only celebrates Smith’s advocacy for the design industry at large but also recognizes her key contributions to the design media landscape through positions at SANDOW Design Group, Hearst Design Group and more.
“Kate and Newell, two admired veterans of the design publishing world, have been championing designers and the profession for decades, winning awards and honors along the way,” says NYSID President David Sprouls. “I could not be more pleased that this dynamic duo, with their insight and understanding of the impact that design has on our daily lives, will be giving commencement addresses to the Class of 2023, the designers of tomorrow.”
In addition to accepting the high honors, Smith and Turner will give keynote speeches during NYSID’s commencement ceremony May 24. More than 114 students are expected to receive their diplomas from the private, nonprofit college.
“I am so honored to receive an honorary doctorate and have the opportunity to do the commencement speech with Newell. It’s a gift of a lifetime,” Smith said.
Smith now joins the ranks of other prominent design industry leaders to whom the school has bestowed the honorary degree. Recent NYSID honorary doctorate recipients include Jennifer Graham (principal at Perkins&Will), John Edelman (president and CEO of Heller), Kia Weatherspoon (interior designer and design equity advocate), and Adam Sandow (founder and chairman, SANDOW companies).