New BIID president announced

By Elspeth Pridham
July 9, 2020

The British Institute of Interior Design (BIID) has announced that its president for the 2020-2021 term is Lester Bennett.

Lester (pictured centre) officially took on the role at the BIID Annual General Meeting on Thursday 2nd July, which was held on line for the first time due to the pandemic. The BIID also presented its two prestigious Institute awards, the CPD Award and the Merit Award, to recognise the achievements of individual BIID Members who have made a valuable contribution to the institute.

Bennett, who takes over from Harriet Forde, has 40 years’ experience gained from running his own practice, being a design director for a plc residential developer, a founding partner of Folio Design LLP and now an independent consultant. Although his main sphere of expertise is residential interior architecture and design, Bennett has experience in commercial and retail, industrial, exhibition and product design.

In addition to his work in the contemporary field, Lester has studied, and lectured on, the history of the English House and is well versed in period interiors, informing his work on many historic and listed buildings. He says, “I feel very honoured to be the new president of the BIID, there have been so many amazing people who have fulfilled this role in the past, not least Harriet from whom I am taking over, that I am only too aware that these are big boots to fill. This will certainly be a challenging year, but I look forward to continuing the work on the initiatives we already have in place, to help our members through this difficult time, and to help develop further ideas to benefit and expand our membership.”

CPD Award
Commitment to Continuing Professional Development (CPD) helps to ensure that BIID Members are keeping up to date with the latest developments in a rapidly changing industry. All BIID Members are required to undertake an annual CPD requirement of 20 hours to remain a Member.

The CPD Award honours the BIID Member who has far exceeded the minimum CPD requirement in that year. At the 2020 AGM, the recipient of the award was BIID registered interior designer Nagashima Masumi (pictured top) who accrued 111 CPD points between April 2019 and March 2020.

Merit Award
The Merit Award honours a member who has particularly excelled in three key criteria: excellence in interior design practice; a contribution to the development of the Institute and a commitment to the wider field of design education. Chosen by the awards committee, the 2020 award was given to BIID registered interior designer and Director of Studies at KLC School of Design, Diana McKnight (pictured bottom).

Diana trained as an interior designer before subsequently achieving an MA in teaching. In addition to running her own interior design practice, she has trained thousands of designers, including many BIID members, in her role of Director of Studies at KLC School of Design. She is responsible for the academic content, planning, management and delivery of all courses at KLC and has lectured in Japan and Russia as well as in the UK.

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