ASID Names Designer and Educator Khoi Vo as New CEO
The American Society of Interior Designers announced today that Khoi Vo will assume the role of chief executive officer effective September 6. As he transitions into the role, Vo will work alongside current ASID CEO, Gary Wheeler, who will serve the organization in an advisor capacity until he retires December 31.
“The reason I’m so attracted to ASID is the fact that it’s an organization that is very inclusive—the membership is so diverse and celebrates design in so many different ways and that always has been something that really resonates with me,” Vo says. “I want to continue on with that mission and really amplify that.”
As CEO, Vo plans to grow ASID’s membership and develop new programs centered around career mentorship and design education with a focus on inclusivity and diversity across disciplines. “That’s where our strength is—the opportunity to be able to speak to each other even if we’re coming from such a different spectrum of design,” he shares. He also plans to foster and build new relationships with industry partners.
Most recently, Vo held a leadership role at the Savannah College of Art and Design and brings more than 20 years of experience across interior design, architecture, and education to ASID. Working in education offered Vo invaluable insights into creating community, which he plans to carry with him. “I’m interested in the idea of building ecosystems,” he says, noting that he often encouraged students and professors from different design disciplines across SCAD to collaborate on projects, enabling them to problem solve and focus on the big picture as well as granular details. “It’s not about one initiative or one program—it’s about strengthening every facet of what we’re working on together.”
Vo also brings an awareness of the inner workings of the business of design to the role. An avid entrepreneur, Vo founded Studio Four Los Angeles in 2002 before going on to form and serve as design director of Khoi Vo Design. Throughout these endeavors, education always has been at the forefront. Vo started out as an assistant professor at California State University before becoming a professor at SCAD’s department of interior design where he later served as chair. After a stint at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Vo returned to SCAD to head its former Hong Kong campus. There, he also took on the role as the institution’s vice president for industry relations, which he stepped down from to join ASID.
“In Khoi Vo, ASID found a unicorn with highly specialized experience and an effective and energetic style of leadership crucial for the organization’s growth and expansion in the years to come,” said Jennifer Kolstad, global design and brand director at Ford Motor Company, and co-chair of the ASID CEO search committee. “As ASID advances its mission to promote the value of interior design and its power to impact lives, Khoi Vo’s leadership will serve not only the Society, but the whole design world and public.”
Always eager to engage with the design community, Vo currently sits on the board of directors for the Interior Design Educator Council Foundation and was an ASID board member from 2017-2019. He has also served as site visitor and co-chair for the Council for Interior Design Accreditation, and as a member of the International Interior Design Association and Interior Design Educators Council for more than a decade.
Throughout his career, Vo has earned several accolades including a 2015 Honorable Mention for the CIDA Award for Excellence in Teaching, the 2017-18 DesignIntelligence Top 25 Most Admired Educators, and a SCAD Presidential Fellowship.
“I feel really privileged to be in this position at this time when we have a whole new world that we have come out of to discover,” he says, noting that there are endless opportunities when it comes to redefining the workplace, as well as the ways people are live and interact—in person and in the digital realm. “I want to make sure ASID, as the champion of design, continues to meet that new world with new ways of helping our membership.” A goal Vo certainly seems well positioned to achieve.
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