Interior Design Schools — Most Admired Educators


Each year, DesignIntelligence honors excellence in architecture and design education, and education administration, by naming outstanding professionals from these fields. Educators and administrators from the disciplines of architecture, interior design and landscape architecture are considered for inclusion. The most admired educators are selected by DesignIntelligence staff with input from thousands of design professionals, academic department heads and students.

Rana Abudayyeh

Rana Abudayyeh

Professor, University of Tennessee

“Rana is extremely supportive of her students while challenging them intensely.”

David Brothers

David Brothers

Professor/Program Coordinator, New Jersey Institute of Technology

“His passion for design drives every lesson he teaches and what he has taught me follows me everyday in my professional role.”

Stephanie Clemons

Stephanie Clemons

Professor, Colorado State University

“Dr. Clemons stands out as an educator who invests time and energy into her pedagogy. She makes every effort to create a diverse and practical learning experience in fun and innovative ways.”

Darlene Davidson

Darlene Davidson

Director of the Interior Design Program/Associate Professor of Interior Design, Maryville University

“She is an avid supporter of her students and continues to mentor long after graduation.”

Melanie Duffey

Melanie Duffey

Professor, Auburn University

“Extraordinary educator in the realm of professional practice, one of the most relevant educators leading a real world curriculum.”

Ellen Fisher

Ellen Fisher

Dean & Vice President of Academic Affairs, New York School of Interior Design

“Ellen is a versatile talent in the interior design community, as advocate, instructor, author, expert testimonials, critic, educator, and mentor.”

Anna Ruth Gaitlin

Anna Ruth Gatlin

Professor, Auburn University

“She cares about her students and pushes us to produce the best work that we can. She is incredibly knowledgeable in every area of design and has an abundance of experience in the field.”

Suk Kyung-Kim

Suk Kyung-Kim

Professor, Michigan State University

“She has extensive experience in the industry that she brings to each of her classes and helps students develop vital skills that they will take with them in their professional careers.”

Tina Patel

Tina Patel

Professor, Kent State University

“She is extremely knowledgeable in the fields of interior design and architecture. She is great at motivating her students to think about design and push the conceptual process. She understands the trends and where design is going in the future.”

Susan Ray-Degges

Susan Ray-Degges

Professor/Interior Design Program Coordinator, North Dakota State University

“She continues to pursue research projects that will better the interior design industry. She is constantly learning and pushes her students to create well-rounded detailed projects.”

Leah Scolere

Leah Scolere

Professor, Colorado State University

“Passionate, cares deeply about her students, loves design, radiates an infectious positive energy.”

Lindsay Tan

Lindsay Tan

Professor/Interior Design Program Coordinator, Auburn University

“Commitment to excellent, holistic design education and preparation of students for practice.”

Lisa Tucker

Lisa Tucker

Program Chair, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

“She has incredible knowledge on the build environment. She always pushes her students to be better and is always there to offer expert advice on anything a student comes to her with. She cares deeply for the Interior Design program at Virginia Tech and takes time to make sure every student succeeds.”

Liliane Wong

Liliane Wong

Professor, Rhode Island School of Design

“Her tenacity in pursuing the best, approachability and sensitivity.”

Robert Work

Robert Work

Professor, Colorado State University

“He continually encourages students to be creative and to fall in love with the process. He always wanted us to use our creativity over all else and then problem solve to make it work in the real world. He was involved in our lives and in our work and made each of us the designers we are today.”

Milagros Zingoni

Milagros Zingoni

Professor, Arizona State University

“She is someone who actively pushes the boundary in the field of interior design, strengthening the voice of this field through education. She equips her students with comprehensive skill sets, pulling from architectural knowledge. In addition, she takes all of her students under her wing, guiding them not only in the classroom but into the real world. Hands down, one of my biggest inspirations and role models.”