Name: Melissa Kalinowski
Company: Steelcase
Hartford City Center


How many years have you served on this Committee?
I have been on this Committee for 5.5 years!

Why did you choose this Committee? I have a sentimental attachment to the Hartford City Center. In the late 90’s, I led the efforts to launch the HCC. It was a lot of hard work, as you all can imagine, but well worth it. A move to the Carolinas resulted in an eleven-year hiatus. When I returned to Connecticut, in 2012, I found an incredibly vibrant and growing HCC. I was moved, beyond words, and knew that I had to get involved again. The HCC is an amazing group of passionate and talented people. I cherish the relationships I have formed and nurtured within IIDA over these many years.

How did you get into the A&D industry?
I was influenced by my father, a custom millworker and residential construction superintendent, and my uncle, an architect in San Francisco. My uncle collaborated with my parents, in designing their dream house, while I was in junior and high school. Watching that process, and seeing the drawings turn into reality, was fascinating, to me, and led me to pursue a career in interior architecture. I have never regretted that decision. After nearly 30 years in commercial design practice, a door opened which led me to my 2nd career as a Workplace Consultant with Steelcase.   

What is your favorite IIDA NE event?
Our annual clambake at the Owenego Beach & Tennis Club in Branford, CT! I enjoy helping at the check in table, greeting all the guests, soaking in the beautiful location, eating delicious seafood, and catching up with friends.