Name: Kenne Shepherd, AIA, LEED AP ID+C
Company Name: Kenne Shepherd Interior Design Architecture PLLC
List up to three associations or organizations that you are currently a member of: AIA, USGBC, CREW New York
What recent project or accomplishment are you most proud of?
This has been a truly unprecedented year. Responding to health concerns from the pandemic, we have focused on how good design, UV lighting, and enhanced air filtration techniques can create healthier and safer environments for our clients and the public. Although delayed by the shutdown, we are happy to announce that one of our most recent projects for Canadian retainer EQ3 opened this month in Brookfield Retail’s SoNo Collection Mall in Norwalk CT. We collaborated with their in-house design team, and their former creative director Thom Fougere, on the 10,000 s/f store which has a prime corner location on the second floor of the mall across from Bloomingdale’s.
What conferences, books, blogs, podcasts, or influencers would you recommend to women?
I would highly recommend CREW Network and their annual convention, leadership summits, and Leadership Certificate Program. CREW Network focuses on supporting the advancement of women in CRE through exposure to industry leaders and training programs that provide women with the skills, insights, knowledge, and support to advance professionally.
What is one characteristic that you believe every woman in business should possess?
What trend(s) will dominate your industry in the next year?
Brick and mortar retail has been one of the hardest hit sectors of commercial real estate during the pandemic and will be one of the slowest to recover in 2021/22. Essential retailers that provide daily necessities are doing well, while department stores and fashion retailers are struggling to adjust to consumers that are reluctant to venture into stores and prefer the safety and convenience of shopping online. This has accelerated the transition from brick and mortar retailing to omnichannel retailing, which combines the strengths of physical stores with online ecommerce. This is a trend that was already underway in 2019 and earlier.