Emerging Leader Questionnaire 2022


Name: Michelle Spencer
Company: Arrowstreet Inc
Concentration: Interior Design
College/University: BA in Art History/French from UMass Amherst; MA of Interior Architecture from BAC
Year(s) of Graduation: BA - 2014, MArch 2020

What is your strongest personal quality?: I am a good listener and enjoy getting to the heart of a matter with new acquaintances and old friends alike.
What is your strongest professional skillset?: I am curious about all aspects of design and strive to understand the big picture as well as the details.

Why did you choose to become an Interior Designer?: I love the challenge of solving a problem, and design allows me to do that for the enjoyment of the end users while upholding aesthetic principles.
How would you describe your personal design style?: Bohemian Minimalism, I love mixing textures, colors and objets d'art in a way that allows each moment to shine individually and as a whole.

What three things do you most geek out on?: Nouvelle Vague films, natural wine and podcasts.
What are you looking forward to as an IIDA Emerging Leader?: Forming lasting relationships with my fellow ELN members, past, present and future.

What has been your go-to for de-stressing this year?: I do yoga 1-2 times a week.
What advice do you have for designer students graduating?: Use your network and be candid about where you are and what you're looking for! People inherently want to be helpful and they are most able to do that when they have an understanding of what is needed.

What is your favorite annual IIDA event?: All of them!
How would you explain the difference between a professional Interior Designer vs Interior Decorator to a stranger?: Interior Designers do everything an architect does on the interior of a building in addition to selecting FFE. We must be aware of code, structural requirements and the role of consultants to achieve an outcome aligned with the larger architectural goals of a project. We are collaborators.