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June 1, 2014
Sally Walsh: 1986 Hall of Fame Inductee
Photo courtesy of Cite 9, Spring 1985.
Houston designer Sally Walsh was born in Inspiration, Arizona, to a father who read Plato and Gertrude Stein and a mother who frequently discussed art, architecture, poetry, literature and international affairs in the hope her two daughters would learn to make “intelligent conversation.” Of a short stint at Augustana College in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, she summarized, “Principal interest: Marry a farmer and raise five children. Interest displayed by farmers: 0.”
Instead, she moved to Chicago and, after holding “10 jobs in 12 weeks,” she began a six-year affiliation with Knoll Associates, progressing there from office typist to sales representative to troubleshooter, design scout and all-around aide-de-camp to founder Hans Knoll. After her mentor’s death, Walsh landed in Houston where, starting in 1980, she headed her own firm designing offices, banks, college teaching facilities, showrooms, design centers and the interiors of jet aircraft. Completed projects include a showroom for Stendig/B&B America in Dallas, the Houston headquarters of H&C Communications and public areas of the Houston Decorative Center Building.