Emerging Professional Award


2017 Criteria

Click here to download the 2017 entry information.

Past Awards:

2016 Criteria

Click here to download the 2016 entry information.

2016 Winners

Cassidy Lange
Cassidy Lange, IIDA, Design Source

Sarah Pride, Assoc. IIDA, Ankrom Moisan Architects

Our 2016 winners created a website to share their experience at NeoCon! Click here to check it out.

Thank you again to our Emerging Professional Award sponsor,Opensquare.

2013-2014 Criteria

You have a passion for design. You are ambitious. You make things happen.  Add another accomplishment to your resume to take the next step in your career.

If you are an emerging professional who has been working in the design industry for 2-10 years, you are eligible to be recognized for your hard work and passion, which will further your career.  The reward is great. $2,500 cash prize to do whatever you want to fuel your passion.

The application process has been simplified to match the demands of your life. Fill out one form and write a short paragraph and you are one step closer to joining an elite group of your peers who will be selected as finalists. If selected as one of the finalists, in addition to being able to add this esteemed recognition to your resume, you will be invited to attend an exclusive reception to meet the finalists and the principals of their firms where the winner will be announced.

If you see yourself as a leader and want to make your mark, watch for more details coming shortly. A little investment in time may get you prestigious recognition from the leaders of our Chapter.

Thanks to BiNW for sponsoring this award!

2013-2014 Winner

Crystal Hooker, IIDA, NCIDQ


This past fall I was awarded the Emerging Professional Award by the IIDA – Northern Pacific Chapter. I used this grant to travel to southern California and visit museums, furniture showrooms, and houses in both Los Angeles and Palm Springs. It was an inspiring and educational trip, with a diverse range of experiences. The value of visiting in-person places I have studied and admired from afar was even greater than I had anticipated thanks in large part to the amazing conversations I was able to have with curators, caretakers, and representatives at each stop.

I toured a variety of houses, including several from the Case Study Program. The oldest house was the Gamble House, an amazing example of Greene & Greene’s woodworking. The Schindler house, Stahl house, Eames house, and a Palm Springs modern homes tour that included interior tours of several homes gave an interesting perspective on architectural preservation. Museum visits to the Los Angeles County Museum of Art & the Architecture + Design Museum (featuring the exhibit Never Built: Los Angeles) allowed for closer looks at furniture, art work, and urban planning. Tours of both the Herman Miller showroom and the Hayworth showroom included in-depth conversations with representatives about today’s changing workplace.

IIDA has provided me with so many educational and inspiring experiences. The opportunities have been so valuable in giving me skills and confidence that have helped me to advance my career and be apart of an even larger design community.

2012-2013 Winner

Elsa Long, Associate IIDA

When I first read the mission statement of the Emerging Professional Grant, which outlines the goal of “inspiring the recipient and design community through encouraging dialog around educational experiences”, I instantly thought of TED talks.

If you aren’t familiar with TED talks yet, prepare to get hooked!
Speakers from around the world, some of whom are household names, and some whom are new-comers, deliver thought-provoking and inspirational messages at TED conferences. The talks are video-recorded and then made available free of charge on TED.com. Subjects range from technology, entertainment and design, to scientific break-thrus and musical performances. It’s a wonderful free source of continuing education and inspiration. The TED mission statement is captured well in their tagline: “ideas worth sharing”.

Personally and professionally, I have found that design and the creative problem-solving processes that we all participate in every day are enriched by cross-pollination of ideas and experiences. We all learn and grow from lessons we teach each other as creators of space.

Using the TED membership and access that the Emerging Professional’s Grant allowed me to participate in, I will be virtually attending two TED conferences this year, for a total of 8 days of inspirational TED talks and performances. I am also a member of an online community of other TED conference attendees, where I participate and contribute to conversation around the most inspiring talks. I will be curating a collection of TED talks that are thought-provoking and relevant to the design community.

I’d like to take the mantra of “ideas worth sharing” one step further, and not only share TED talks with the IIDA NPC community, but layer on the Emerging Professional’s goal of “inspiring dialog”. I will be sharing a TED talk once a month, beginning February 2013 thru December 2013. I will post a link to the TED talk on the IIDA NPC Facebook, LinkedIn and website pages, which allows all members to watch the video on their own time, wherever they choose. Each video link will also include some conversation-starter comments of mine, which will encourage you, an IIDA member, to participate in dialog about the ideas, discoveries and inspiring moments from the TED talk you viewed.

I am excited for the potential to leverage technology and social media to bridge the geographic regions that encompass our IIDA NPC chapter, and hear comments and ideas from Alaska, Idaho, Washington, Alberta and British Columbia. I hope this will connect us as a community of designers who will continue to better our profession through the exchange of ideas and inspiration.

In December, we will take a look back, and I will share a recap of which TED talks most inspired us, motivated us, and taught us something new about the world of design.  I look forward to this educational journey, and hope to hear from each of you. Please visit the IIDA NPC Facebook and LinkedIn to view the TED talks and participate in the dialog.