Ronnie Belizaire, an alumni student of FSU IA&D First Professional Program, has been making impressive strides. She has recently been inducted into the 2021 IIDA College of Fellows. IIDA is a commercial interior design association with global reach that supports design professionals, industry affiliates, educators, students, firms, and their clients through our network of 15,000+ members across 58 countries.
Belizaire started her career as a business major at Florida A&M University and decided to expand her horizons by enrolling in the First Professional IA&D Program at Florida State University. She currently works for JLL as Vice-President and has achieved many goals throughout her 15-year career. Belizaire has completed projects for numerous clients as a project manager and designer as well as a corporate real estate manager. She has also volunteered in multiple service projects including mission trips to Haiti with Engineering Ministries International and NGOs in need of funding. Some of her previous services include IIDA Georgia Chapter President from 2013-2014 and IIDA Foundation Chair from 2017-2019. The Department of Interior Architecture and Design (IAD) recently sat down with Belizaire to find out more about her recent work as a professional and as a current member of the IAD Advisory Council.
IAD: What inspired you to become an interior designer?
“I always had an interest in the way the built environment comes together, but never considered a career in the industry until I took some online career assessment tests that led me to interior design. I followed with cold calls to design professionals trying to understand what they do every day as work and once I got a better understanding of what interior designers do, I knew it was the right career path for me that would satisfy both my analytical and creative sides.”
IAD: What are some of the major accomplishments you have had throughout your professional career?
“A few of my nearest and dearest accomplishments include participating on two design mission trips to Haiti in 2010 with Engineering Ministries International, during which we conceptually master-planned 2 project sites for NGOs in need of funding. Managing/Leading the Gensler design team that won the 2018 Large Office Category in Interior Design Magazine’s Best of Award for the Mercedes-Benz USA and, finally, being the inaugural recipient of the FSU IA&D Department’s Emerging Alumni Award in 2020.
IAD: What are your current goals as a member of the Advisory Council at FSU IA&D?
“Currently as a part of the advisory council, I hope to be a voice that champions Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, helping the program to thrive in educating students into professionals who permeate D, E & I in their designs and the work that they do every day.”
IAD: What is your vision as you take on a new position at JLL?
“I believe there is a long-standing gap in understanding the value that design professionals offer to organizations in the work that they do because there are so many outsides of the traditional design professions who don’t really understand the work and the value. In my role at JLL I represent clients in their project needs which gives me a unique opportunity to influence how design is regarded in providing solutions that meet organizational goals.”