With portfolios spanning retail, hospitality, institutional projects, product design and more, this month’s jury will use their impressive collective experience to evaluate submitted projects and products in April.

Katharina Fischer, creative consultant at Katharina Fischer Design and Speaking Spaces

Having worked in creative fields ranging from product design to scenography and conceptual design, Katharina Fisher lives by the principle that knowledge in one field strengthens creativity in another. The Berlin native studied product design with a focus on furniture and exhibitions during which she examined how trends influence society and design. She currently works as a freelance creative in Berlin and has worked with clients including L'Oréal, Montblanc and OEKO-TEX.

Jocelyne Sacre, design strategist

Originally hailing from Lebanon and currently based Paris, Jocelyne Sacre is a design strategy consultant, working on the border of spatial design and business. As an experienced architect and workplace designer – having started her career at the Taller de Architectura in Paris – her work mainly focuses on developing design strategies and architectural briefs to help companies foster a sense of innovation by optimizing their living and business spaces. Over the last two decades she delivered successful solutions to the likes of Shell, LVMH and the justice ministry of France. 

Alexandra Cuber, director of Fogarty Finger

Alexandra Cuber is the head of the hospitality department at architecture and interior firm Fogarty Finger where she has contributed her design sensibility to projects to the likes of the amenity spaces of Dock 72 at the Brooklyn Navy Yard, a branch of Nike’s NYC offices and a yet-to-be-unveiled boutique hotel in downtown Manhattan. As an AIA member and a LEED-accredited professional the New York City resident prides herself in her ability to craft creative solutions within practical constraints and provide expert guidance to her clients. 

Drew Gilbert, design manager at OBMI

Drew Gilbert is an American architect currently based in Dubai where he works as a design manager at OBMI. Having received multiple accolades like being named Young Designer RU in 2019, selected three for the Top 30 Architects Powerlist and a finalist for the Young Architect of the year, his approach to design blends technology with respects to site, climate and cultural aspects. The LEED-accredited professional has a master’s degree in architecture is firmly guided by sustainable design principles. 

Sanjit Manku, associate partner and architect at Studio Jouin Manku

Born in Nairobi, Kenya in 1971, Sanjit Manku spent his childhood in Ontario, Canada. He studied architecture at Carleton University and following his degree established his own studio before joining design firm Yabu Pushelberg where he remained for five years. In 2001, he met designer Patrick Jouin in Paris with whom he founded Parisian design studio Jouin Manku in 2006. As an associate partner and architect at the firm, Manku has completed projects with clients like Hôtel La Mamounia, Van Cleef & Arpels and Air France.

Frank la Rivière, founder of Frank la Rivière Architects and head of ICS College of Arts and Interior Design Vocational School 

Frank la Rivière is the founder and principal architect of Frank la Rivière Architects, based in Tokyo, Japan. Originally from the Netherlands, his design philosophy posits that balanced aspects will generate more humane environments. Some of his most notable clients include Hermès Japan and the city of Aomori. La Rivière is also the head of CS College of Arts, an interior design vocational school. 

Victoria Stiles, retail design manager at Mirvac

With more than 25 years of design industry experience spanning retail, aviation and healthcare, Victoria Stiles currently works as a retail design manager at property group Mirvac. She holds an advanced diploma of interior design and champions sustainability as the most important aspect of her design philosophy. In her role, she works with thousands of retail tenancies to help deliver asset expansions and national developments of dining precincts, while placing an emphasis on sustainable initiatives that can be adopted by Mirvac’s business nationally. 

Asell Yusupova, strategy director at UXUS

Currently based in Amsterdam, Asell Yusupova has been working as a brand advisor spanning beauty, food and beverage, fashion, luxury, tech and culture for more than a decade. As a strategy director at retail and experience design company UXUS, she helps brands grow by creating engaging consumer experiences. Leading the strategy department, Yusupova works with brands like Nike, McDonald’s, Chanel, Sephora, Bentley, Waitrose & Partners, and the Kering Group.  

Xie Peihe, founder and chief designer of AD Architecture

Xie Peihe is the founder and chief designer of AD Architecture firm, based in Shenzhen, China. Winning personal accolades like Perspective’s 40 Under 40 Awards, which recognized him as one of the young leading design talents, his firm has also been critically recognized with numerous awards. Peihe’s design ethos is a balance of contrasts: rationality and emotion, functionality and personality, and complexity and simplicity. Some of his most notable projects include the design of AD Architecture’s own office in Shenzen, Da Dong Gastro Esthetics in Nanxincang and WU Modern Chao Cuisine also in Shenzhen.

Chasing Wang, founder of Nong Studio

With a PhD in landscape architecture, Dr. Chasing Wang currently teaches as an assistant professor at the College of D&I at Tongji University. In 2016, he founded Nong Studio in Shanghai, which has additional offices in Milan and New York City. He draws deeply on his academic background in his design work – having spent a decade researching modern Shanghainese interior design history – and believes that research is one of the strongest assets in creating experiential spatial design. 

Nicolas Demers-Stoddart, partner at Provencher Roy

Nicolas Demers-Stoddart has an impressive design range, having contributed to institutional projects like the Reception Pavilion of the National Assembly of Québec and Fiat Lux Library at McGill University as well as civic design projects like the Samuel-De Champlain Bridge in Montréal. As a partner and lead designer at architecture firm Provencher Roy, he prioritizes conceptual integrity in his works and believes that assuming a multi-disciplinary approach is the best way to push the architectural and spatial design professions forward.

Michael Schwab, founder of In Pretty Good Shape

Michael Schwab’s main focus as a designer is ‘to create innovative and durable objects, which are of real value to society,’ he describes. Together he and his partner, Anna, founded the sustainable product and spatial design studio In Pretty Good Shape located in Salzburg, Austria. With experience as a carpenter and a master’s degree in design and product management from the University of Applied Sciences Salzburg, Schwab has a special affinity for renewable natural resources like wood and other interior technologies. 

Ruud de Bruin, creative director at Ace & Tate

Ruud de Bruin has more than two decades of design experience. As creative director of optical brand Ace & Tate he oversees the design and aesthetics of all products and platforms with the focus on ensuring the best possible experience for customers when they enter a store or the website. Outside of his work at Ace & Tate, De Bruin runs a creative studio with his partner in Amsterdam working with clients like The North Face, Tommy Hilfiger and Levi’s.

Larry Traxler, senior vice president of global head architecture and design, Hilton Hotels & Resorts

Currently serving his 13th year as the global head of design at Hilton, Larry Traxler oversees architecture, design, construction and renovation for all 18 of Hilton’s hotel brands as well as leading design efforts for Hilton’s new brands. Traxler studied architecture at the University of Cincinnati’s College of Design, Architecture, Art and Planning, and has more than 30 years of experience in international hospitality design, having started out his career at architectural design studio Jordan Mozer & Associates. Prior to joining Hilton, he worked in design functions for Hyatt Hotels and Ian Schrager.

Wing Weng, head of retail design and development Asia at Aesop

Before working in the retail industry for the past ten plus years, Wing Weng earned a bachelor of architecture from TU Berlin Germany, a master of architecture from TU Delft and a master of international business management from the University of Amsterdam. With extensive experience in store concept and design as well as retail development and expansion, Weng’s work has spanned the world from Berlin to Hong Kong. Currently, she is based in Amsterdam and is the lead of retail design and development for skincare brand Aesop in Asia.