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From Home Furnishing Business

High Point Market Unveils Spring Keynote Lineup

The High Point Market Authority has announced its Keynote Series lineup for Spring Market, April 6-10, aiming to enhance buyers’ Market experience with timely, relevant and forward-thinking topics. 

This season’s educational series features celebrated podcast host LuAnn Nigara and celebrity designers Bobby Berk, Thom Filicia, Carson Kressley and Michel Smith Boyd, plus moderators and industry tastemakers Sophie Donelson and Clinton Smith, in three dynamic events. Each will share insights and business-building advice with High Point Market attendees. 

All sessions will take place in the High Point Theatre, conveniently located in the main Transportation Terminal, with doors opening 30 minutes prior to each session.

The first Keynote Series session will feature best-selling author, sought-after business speaker and host of the podcast, A Well-Designed Business, LuAnn Nigara. Nigara helps interior design professionals operate profitable and productive businesses by providing useful and understandable insights through conversations with industry leaders. Her podcast is the highest rated and reviewed podcast in the interior design business category and also boasts over 1.3 million downloads. 

Nigara will share an overview of critical topics for running an interior design business plus straight talk and actionable lessons for designers to take back to their practices. Dual-branded to kick off both the Keynote Series and the Design Viewpoints Series, this session will offer designers 0.1 continuing education credits (CEUs). Presented in partnership with the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID) and sponsored by Monogram Appliances, this session is scheduled for Saturday, April 6, at 12 p.m. with a book signing to follow. A complimentary boxed lunch will be provided on a first-come, first-served basis. 

The second session will also occur on opening day of Spring Market and will feature celebrity interior designers and TV personalities Thom Filicia, Carson Kressley, and Michel Smith Boyd. A unique keynote session, this 60-minute event will be part panel discussion, part talk show and part game show. Journalist, tastemaker, and former editor-in-chief of Veranda, Clinton Smith will moderate the event, zeroing in on the design prowess, industry expertise, and trend-forecasting abilities of Filicia, Kressley, and Smith Boyd. Portions of the program will include audience participation and the chance to win prizes. This session is scheduled for Saturday, April 6, at 2:30 p.m.

Filicia, Kressley, and Smith Boyd all currently star in design shows on the cable network Bravo. Filicia and Kressley have teamed up for a return to TV in their show Get a Room with Carson and Thom, while Smith Boyd recently made his TV debut as the design star in Buying It Blind. Beyond their on-air commitments, Filicia is a celebrated interior designer, Emmy-Award winner, product designer and best-selling author; Kressley is a two time Emmy-Award winner, fashion expert, style designer and best-selling author; and Smith Boyd’s blossoming career as an interior designer has landed him on the list of Top 20 African American Designers in the country and brought features of his work to the pages of Elle Décor, Traditional Home, Vogue, Veranda, Ebony, and Washington Post, among others. 

The Keynote Series will culminate with an exploration of celebrity interior designer and television personality Bobby Berk’s career and brand development. Driven by a lifelong passion for design, Berk’s career pursuits cover almost every facet of the home furnishings and design industry. In a casual conversation, Berk will discuss his successes, his lessons learned, and his advice as he reveals the inside story behind the Bobby Berk brand with moderator Sophie Donelson, author, speaker, design expert, and former editor-in-chief of House Beautiful.

Known more recently for his work on Netflix’s "Queer Eye" as the lovable go-to design expert, Berk's career began in retail and e-commerce before opening up his own brick and mortar store and then establishing his own design firm. Berk’s varied experiences, keen eye and innovative approach have allowed him to build a unique brand identity and establish himself as a leader in design amidst a global market. This session is sponsored by A.R.T. Furniture, as they are launching their latest collection, Bobby Berk for A.R.T. Furniture, during Spring Market. It is scheduled for Sunday, April 7, at 3 p.m. 

“This Market’s keynote speakers have decades of experience to share, along with topics to inspire, encourage and educate,” said Tom Conley, president and CEO of the High Point Market Authority. “It’s a unique lineup and one that will undoubtedly intrigue our Market guests, while also bringing them actionable advice, motivating success stories, and an enjoyable experience.”

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