Masters of Design: Sam Farber

Founder, Copco, OXO, and Wovo

A serial entrepreneur with an economics degree from Harvard, Sam Farber foresaw the bottom-line benefits of great design as far back as 1960, when he launched COPCO, a kitchen-design company. His second venture, OXO, which makes the popular kitchen tools with rubberlike handles called Good Grips, proves that consumers are indeed willing to pay $6 for a potato peeler that works better and looks great. Says Sara Beckman, senior lecturer at UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business: “OXO tools are used by lead designers in companies like IBM and by faculty in many business schools to show how thoughtful design can be used to launch new businesses–and change entire marketplaces.” With his third company, WOVO, Farber continues his relentless focus on teaming with designers to create products that solve real human needs.

Peak Performers: Four masters who are leading the world of design
Impact Players: Four high-impact projects that shaped the year in design–and the people who launched them
  • William McDonough, Principal and founder, William McDonough + Partners
  • Tom Ford , Former Creative Director, Gucci and Yves Saint Laurent
  • Jonathan Ive, Vice President of Industrial Design, Apple Computer Inc.
  • Marcia Lausen, Founding member, AIGA Design for Democracy
Game Changers: The risk takers and agitators who are rewriting the rules
Collaborators: Champions who help make great design happen
Next Generation: Meet four rising stars who are charting the future
A Jury of Their Peers
Introducing 11 jurors–top leaders from universities, cultural institutions, and business–who helped us select our 20 Masters of Design.
Lessons From the Masters
These five ideas will help you incorporate design principles in your work — and better connect with customers and colleagues.