NEWH - Summer 2014 - 32

Q&A

A chat with
Stephanie Thompson
President of the North Central chapter and an
interior designer at Cunningham Group

How/why did you become involved in NEWH?
I became involved with NEWH when I was a student at the
University of Minnesota, College of Design. I was working
towards my Bachelor of Science degree in Interior Design and
I was really interested in hospitality design. NEWH seemed
like a great opportunity to learn more about the hospitality
industry and it provided me with opportunities to network with
professionals.
What has NEWH done for you personally and professionally?
What hasn't NEWH done for me? Getting involved with NEWH
as a student, one of the fi rst opportunities that I participated
in was signing up for a mentor, through the North Central
chapter. Th is mentor program brought me into contact with a
professional in the industry, who gave me an internship that
turned into my fi rst job where, over the next six-and-a-half
years, I honed my skills to become a successful hospitality
designer.
When I felt it was time to move on, it was through my
contacts/connections that I had made through NEWH where
I heard about the opportunity to work at Cuningham Group.
I applied and accepted an offer to work at this amazing fi rm. I
have loved every moment of it.
As president of the North Central chapter, what do you have
planned for 2014? What are you most looking forward to?
The North Central chapter is always busy providing creative,
educational, and relevant events for our members. We have
already had a few great events in 2014. We hosted a hard
hat tour at the Schmidt Artist Lofts, and held our always
successful Student Speed Mentoring Event. We are excited
for a newly created design competition that we are going to
have in conjunction with our annual Brits Pub Lawn Bowling
extravaganza this summer! Finally, we are thrilled that we are
going to be having another tradeshow in 2015.
What were some of the highlights of 2013?
We came off 2013 with the best tradeshow that the North
Central chapter has ever hosted, which was held at the Radisson
Blu at the Mall of America. It was a fantastic event with keynote
speakers, CEU presentations, a tradeshow, and a discussion
panel.
32 www.newh.org

What is new at Cuningham?
Cuningham Group is getting larger. Over the last few years we
have added three more office locations in Denver, San Diego,
and Phoenix. We also have been doing work overseas, mainly in
China and South Korea. Currently, I have been working on hotel
projects and restaurant concepts nationally and internationally.
What is the biggest challenge today in hospitality? Biggest
opportunity?
The biggest challenge is for properties/brands/designers to fi nd
that balance of pleasing the client base that they currently have,
yet still appealing to the younger generations that are becoming
more influential in the industry. There is so much development
and work right now overseas that it is something that everyone
in the industry should be evaluating as they look to diversify
their portfolio and have a more worldly presence.
What is your latest travel highlight?
Last summer we traveled to Vancouver and Whistler, British
Columbia. It was beautiful. Traveling up to Whistler Mountain
to Blackcomb Mountain along the coast was amazing. Once
we were up in the mountains the scenery was like no other
and if you are adventurous, the white water rafting and zipline
experiences literally take your breath away.
Trend/movement you are paying attention to in the industry?
Creating experience and influencing how people interact with
that space is what makes hospitality so exciting. Technology is a
huge contributor, in the conveniences and nuances that it brings
to the table. Another trend is to strive to create something
unique yet timeless, while fashioning spaces that appeal to
younger generations.
When you aren't working or at an NEWH event, where can we
find you?
Like a good Minnesotan, up north at the lake where my family
has a cabin. Just about every weekend in the summer, you will
fi nd me floating in the water with a drink in my hand while my
kids play on the beach. It doesn't get any better than that! ❙❘❚


http://www.newh.org

NEWH - Summer 2014

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of NEWH - Summer 2014

NEWH - Summer 2014
Contents
News
Who's Who
Sustainability
Conference Rounup
Scholarships
Q&A: Chris Tucker
Q&A: Karen Appert
Q&A: Stephanie Thompson
Product Know How
Have You seen?
On the Scene
On The Cover: Vaughan Benz’s Scott Vaughan and David Benz
Project: Warwick Suites, New York
Project: Chino Chinatown, Dallas
Save the Date
New Members
Partner Profiles
Chapter Highlights
Ad Index
NEWH - Summer 2014 - NEWH - Summer 2014
NEWH - Summer 2014 - Cover2
NEWH - Summer 2014 - Contents
NEWH - Summer 2014 - News
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 5
NEWH - Summer 2014 - Who's Who
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 7
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 8
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 9
NEWH - Summer 2014 - Sustainability
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 11
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 12
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 13
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 14
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 15
NEWH - Summer 2014 - Conference Rounup
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 17
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 18
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 19
NEWH - Summer 2014 - Scholarships
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 21
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 22
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 23
NEWH - Summer 2014 - Q&A: Chris Tucker
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 25
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 26
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 27
NEWH - Summer 2014 - Have You seen?
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 29
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 30
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 31
NEWH - Summer 2014 - Q&A: Stephanie Thompson
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 33
NEWH - Summer 2014 - Product Know How
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 35
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 36
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 37
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 38
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 39
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 40
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 41
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 42
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 43
NEWH - Summer 2014 - On the Scene
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 45
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 46
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 47
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 48
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 49
NEWH - Summer 2014 - On The Cover: Vaughan Benz’s Scott Vaughan and David Benz
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 51
NEWH - Summer 2014 - Project: Warwick Suites, New York
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 53
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 54
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 55
NEWH - Summer 2014 - Project: Chino Chinatown, Dallas
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 57
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 58
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 59
NEWH - Summer 2014 - Save the Date
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 61
NEWH - Summer 2014 - New Members
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 63
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 64
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 65
NEWH - Summer 2014 - Partner Profiles
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 67
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 68
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 69
NEWH - Summer 2014 - Chapter Highlights
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 71
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 72
NEWH - Summer 2014 - 73
NEWH - Summer 2014 - Ad Index
NEWH - Summer 2014 - Cover3
NEWH - Summer 2014 - Cover4
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https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/newh/2015summer
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