In Memoriam: Ted Kloss

April 18th, 2014
Ted Kloss, Designer

BEST FRIEND • MENTOR • MUSE

On April 11, 2014, I lost my best friend, my mentor and creative muse, Ted Kloss.

Although I first met him in 1978, when I was representing architectural graphics manufacturers, I really came to love him after deciding to start my own firm in 1985. He could not have been more helpful or totally supportive of me, my ideas and the talents he saw in me. He never wavered from his special, whole-hearted, loving friendship and guidance.

And, happily for me over the years, I slowly began to believe him. That sort of confidence-in-one’s-self is a gift that no one else in my business life ever offered and maintained; it set me on a course for creative problem-solving and consultation to others utilizing my own unique interests and skills. It serves me still.

An interior designer throughout his professional life, Ted viewed all of life as an interesting and creative challenge. Full of energy, music, playfulness and impeccable taste, he just innately knew how best we humans should experience our visual and physical environments…..in comfort. I’ve known and worked with literally 100’s of designers. None were ever as comprehensive in thought about the client as he.

So, when you ever consider the quality, ease of functionality and perfect appropriateness of our work over these years, see it all as a total reflection of him, his point of view, his design direction.  I take him, his lessons, and his love everywhere with me now. Thank you, Ted.

Written by Robin E. Williams

Capital Campaigns are NOT about raising money

April 9th, 2014

After 30 years of focus on philanthropy, I’ve come to understand that Capital Campaigns are about institutional transformation…..NOT about raising money.

food for thoughtSo just as one evaluates all organizational efficiencies and goals in prep for the campaign, one must particularly reflect on how donors are thanked.

Proactive or reactionary? Motivational or an afterthought? Unified or hodge-podge? Programmatic or “in the moment”? Brand supportive or non-specific? Any campaign (and organization’s future) is better served if its thinking about thanking were transformed in preparation for imminent change.

Written by Robin E. Williams