Curator of architecture and design,
Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)
Since joining MoMA 10 years ago, Paolla Antonelli has had to compete with Picasso and Magritte to capture people's attention. Her shows have done just that. From exhibitions on the future of the workplace to her current show on "humble" masterpieces such as Post-It notes and Bic pens, Antonelli continues to demonstrate to the world the scope and dynamism of design.
Sara L. Beckman
Senior lecturer, operations and IT
technology, Haas School of Business,
University of California, Berkeley
In her eight years of teaching at one of the country's top business schools, Beckman has co-taught one of most popular courses there, according to students and faculty alike. The legendary new-product-development class brings together business, design, and engineering students to create multi-disciplinary teams tasked with the challenge of coming up with a new product idea and prototype.
John R. Hoke III
Vice president and global creative
director, footwear design, Nike
An architect by training, John Hoke has taken the sneaker to mythic status. He joined Nike in 1992, but he's been designing shoes for years — since he was a kid, actually, sending in shoe designs to company founder Phil Knight. Today, Hoke's team creates more than 200 new styles of foot wear each year for the athletic apparel giant.
Founding partner, Donovan/Green
Nancye Green has solved communications problems of all kinds — from retail design and concept development to information design and brand strategy work — for some of the world's most well-known companies: Sony, P&G, General Motors, and Estée Lauder. She designed and developed American Girl Place, the store, and the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library. And now she's working on Naomi Judd's skincare line, which was launched last August through infomercials and has drawn more than 100,000 customers. Green's first foray into the medium is hardly the high-design world she's known for nearly 30 years, but she's betting that it's her next big line to high-impact marketing and branding.
President, Art Center College of Design
Since Richard Koshalek was appointed president of Art Center College of Design in 1999, the world-class institution has embarked on a 10-year multi-million-dollar program to help designers open themselves up to the world. It's time for more of what Koshalek calls "creative leadership." Design is a pragmatic solution to any number of intractable global problems, he says, taking that message to some of today's most-impressive leaders at events such as the World Economic Forum.
Vice president, design, innovation,
and strategy, Procter & Gamble
She's a woman on a mission: As Proctor & Gamble's first-ever chief design officer, Claudia Kotchka faces the challenge of building design into the very DNA of the world's largest consumer products company.
Chairman and founder,
Corporate Design Foundation
At the intersection of design and business for about 30 years, Peter Lawrence has helped some (but not enough, he says) of the world's top companies and business schools understand the power of design as a competitive resource. Lawrence, an architect by training who recalls that the client was never talked about in school, has also worked closely with designers to position design in a business context.
President, Rhode Island
School of Design
Educator, art historian, and former leader of major museums such as the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., RISD's Roger Mandle is the president presidents turn to. A veteran of 35 years in arts and humanities education, Mandle (who was appointed by Reagan and George H. W. Bush as a member of the National Council on the Arts and is currently a member of the Executive Committee of the Ambassadors for the Arts, appointed by former President Clinton) has long helped steer the country's art and design agenda.
CEO, CMCD Visual Symbols Library
As the creative mind behind such change-the-game technologies and products as the Macintosh computer, the Microsoft Network, and the iconic Aeron chair, Clement Mok, a self-described "instigator of things," has played an undeniably influential role in how we live and work.
Jane Fulton Suri
Director of human factors design
and research, Ideo
Jane Fulton Suri has introduced squishy terms such as "empathic connection" to some of the world's toughest companies. Pioneering the human-centered design approach at world-class product-development firm IDEO, Suri, who has a background in psychology and architecture, has helped companies such as Kodak, Microsoft, and Nokia maximize the user experience.
Paul Warwick Thompson
Director, Smithsonian's Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum
Paul Warwick Thompson helped create a design and technology program within the UK's National Curriculum, requiring children aged six to 16 to study the subject in school. He turned around the struggling Design Museum in London as its director for nearly a decade. Now he is in the U.S. and focused on helping the Smithsonian Institution's Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum live up to the scope of its name.
A version of this article appeared in the June 2004 issue of Fast Company magazine.