Entries by Ron Kitchens

LEADER2LEADER: Denise Crawford

Define leadership.
The ability to inspire and motivate others towards a common goal.

Who has had a tremendous impact on you as a leader?
Dr. Allen Kogan. He’s always with me. He was my first real boss in the professional world out of school. He took me under his wing, mentored me, and was a really, really solid good person. The most profound part was just having the ability to watch him and see how he interacted with others as a leader.

He was the chief of staff. He was, at that particular time, over the psychiatry department. Throughout this mentoring process, he would constantly coach me on various situations. In a difficult situation with the doctor, he would say things like, “You always want to end on a positive note. Remember it’s never personal.” It would just be very quick and to the point. He would regularly summarize any interaction. Whether if it was very intense or even if it was positive, he would say, “Never forget the true focus. Never forget the patient.” He was just very humble and profound.

LEADER2LEADER: Travis Cree

Define leadership.
Leadership is mobilizing others to make a change, process, or environment.

Who has had a tremendous impact on you as a leader?
My boss in college, Dr. Damon Arnolds, was the first adult in a position of power that would sit down and ask my opinion and challenge how I thought about things. He really wanted to have a conversation that would push the envelope. A lot of our conversations were based around racial inequality or socioeconomic inequality. He was the first guy who really got me opening my eyes to something that I didn’t know or see or grow up in because I grew up in Vicksburg. There wasn’t a ton of diversity. There were socioeconomic disparities, but it wasn’t really that obvious, I guess, so I kind of grew up in a charmed environment. He was the first guy that really challenged that and challenged my thoughts on giving back.

A Conversation with MIKE ROZEWICZ

What does an interior designer do?
An interior designer takes a client’s request for spaces in buildings, and gives them a great solution for furniture for their interiors while keeping in mind the client’s vision and mission.

What does your typical day look like?
My typical day is usually spent in the office working on space planning, furniture designs, and furniture layouts. I do a lot of budget pricing for customers and furniture options—customers want to see what a lobby, an office, or a collaboration area could look like. I do renderings, which are a 3D visual with color, lighting, furniture, and architectural features that show what a space will potentially look like. I also do a lot of research online about furniture, contacting reps, and contacting other designers.

Architecting solutions

Hungarian inventor, architect, and professor of architecture Ernö Rubik invented the Rubik’s Cube 40 years ago. What has become one of the world’s top-selling puzzle games was originally created to build Rubik’s students’ problem solving skills at the Academy of Applied Arts and Crafts in Budapest. How could they get the pieces to move without falling apart?

The job of an architect is to design and construct something. But it’s so much more, according to an actual architect or product designer: it’s more about problem-solving. In the case of a six-sided, six-colored cube, it’s more like getting cubes to move in harmony or getting similar colors to appear on the same face.

Landscape Forms, the industry leader in integrated collections of high-design site furniture and advanced LED lighting headquartered in Comstock Township, approaches its business model based on superior product designs in that manner.

A Conversation with NATALIE DEPERRO

What does an interior designer do?
An interior designer takes a client’s request for spaces in buildings, and gives them a great solution for furniture for their interiors while keeping in mind the client’s vision and mission.

What does your typical day look like?
My typical day is usually spent in the office working on space planning, furniture designs, and furniture layouts. I do a lot of budget pricing for customers and furniture options—customers want to see what a lobby, an office, or a collaboration area could look like. I do renderings, which are a 3D visual with color, lighting, furniture, and architectural features that show what a space will potentially look like. I also do a lot of research online about furniture, contacting reps, and contacting other designers.

LEADER2LEADER: Jeremiah Smith

Define leadership.
Vulnerability, honesty, transparency, planning, strategy … with a bit of focus, and goals. If you merge all those things together, you can really do some great things, because you’ve got to get people to trust you and then see your goal and vision. One thing I forgot is to understand peoples’ strengths, because it helps you actually get to the goal. So if a person’s good at something, you can see that (something) and put it in the right place where you need it to be.

LEADER2LEADER: Stacey Hamlin

Define leadership.
Connecting people, and then being able to inspire them to make your vision come to life.

Who has had a tremendous impact on you as a leader?
There isn’t one person to whom I can attribute impact, honestly. I think it’s been my own internal drive and the people who I’ve surrounded myself with in school, after school, and at my job. I think I have picked up things here and there, but I always wanted to be a leader. It was really something, an internal drive that I had.