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RDI announces the Mark V. Looper Award for Design Collaboration

The Retail Design Institute, the largest and oldest association for retail design professionals, has established the Mark V. Looper Award for Design Collaboration. The annual award will be used to recognize the design talents of teams working together who enter the Institute’s annual student design competition. The award is being offered in time for the 2018 Student Design Competition already underway.

“We’ve added the ‘Mark V. Looper Award for Design Collaboration,’ because Mark was a champion of collaboration,” said Andrew McQuilkin, FRDI, chairman of the Student Design Competition. “Throughout his career, Mark invited and inspired individuals to work together. So the Institute feels strongly about using this opportunity to recognize those who do at the earliest stages in their design profession.”

The Institute’s International Executive Board approved the recognition in January and determined the award would go to the Student Group winner — in Mark’s memory. The Student Design Prize Fund is currently funded with proceeds from the Institute’s Annual International Design Competition entry fees and from its Annual Awards Gala Sponsorships. Now, anyone can contribute to the Looper award.

Contributions from individuals and firms at any amount are welcome. All contributions will be acknowledged in future newsletters and on the Institute’s website. For more information click here.

Mark V. Looper (1958 – 2017): Mark joined the Institute (then the Institute of Store Planners) in 1996, when he was a young architect working for Tiffany & Co. as group director of store design. He would later hold positions with Old Navy as director of store and fixture design, and with Polo Ralph Lauren as director of store lifecycle planning. At the time of his passing last August, Mark was director of store design and construction at Payless ShoeSource, and a member of the St. Louis Chapter.

About the Student Design Competition: Since 1971 and every year since, the Institute offers a competition for design students that simulate the real world conceptual development of a retail store. The goal of the quarter/semester long curriculum is to give educators a tool that helps students develop a process around how they solve design problems. And, it’s a way to encourage and recognize the emerging design talent.
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