Decorative Furnishings Association

info@decorativefurnishingsassociation.com    |    516.445.0346

 

© 2019 Decorative Furnishings Association. All Rights Reserved.

DFA President 

Eric Chang​​,

Co-Founder, Hellman-Chang

DFA President, Eric Chang, began his furniture journey as a childhood hobby with his best friend, Daniel Hellman, in their parents’ garage over the summers of high school and college. Having gone their separate ways, and studying Finance and Marketing at NYU’s Stern School of Business, Chang helped start an online marketing agency that became ranked one of the Top 100 Fastest Growing Private Businesses in America by Entrepreneur Magazine, before reunited with Hellman in New York City and re-engaging their woodworking hobby as weekend warriors in a Brooklyn co-op. Shortly after, they received major design awards, and their first three clients included the Four Seasons Hotel, Sex and the City and Gossip Girl, before being picked up by trade showrooms nationwide. During Chang's presidency, he has held the E-Commerce Summit and invited major brand speakers in the luxury market to discuss the impact of their respective sales and technology strategies on similar market challenges. His expertise have identified a number of seismic holes in the Trade model that can be turned into tremendous awareness, aspiration, and sales growth opportunities for the industry, as well as create numerous efficiencies for interior designers.

DFA Vice President 

Jobst Blachy, 

CEO, Quintus 

Jobi Blachy is the owner of Quintus.  Jobi was born into the furniture industry and has passionately pursued excellence in the industry for over 25 years. Blachy graduated from the University of Cincinnati and earned an M.B.A. from the Kellogg Graduate School of management from Northwestern University. Jobi’s drive and obsession for operations and customer service led him to hold executive positions with many notable luxury furniture manufacturers, including: Henredon Furniture Industries, Edward Ferrell + Lewis Mittman and Rose Tarlow Melrose House.  He acquired Quintus in 2014, and has completely reinvented the operations and design aesthetic of the company since then; elevating Quintus into a leading to-the-trade resource.

DFA Treasurer 

Cary Kravet, 

President, Kravet

Cary Kravet is President and CEO of Kravet Inc., a fifth generation family business which is owned and run by Cary, his wife Lisa, his sister Ellen and his brother Scott. A graduate of Emory University and Harvard Law School, Cary also attended the Wharton School of Business, where he acquired integral educational training to transform Kravet Inc. from a small wholesaler into a global leader in to-the-trade home textiles, furniture and home furnishings. Since the company originated a century ago, Kravet Inc. has expanded to also own Brunschwig & Fils, Lee Jofa, Groundworks and GP&J Baker, as well as distribute many other luxury brands. For over fifteen years, Cary has served on the Board of Trustees of Northwell Health, the second largest not for profit health system in our country; he also serves on the board of the United Hospital Fund. 

DFA Consumer Initiative Co-Chair 

Chad Stark, 

Sr. Vice President, STARK

Industry thought leader Chad Stark has a unique perspective on the design industry. With experience in the startup and digital marketing worlds before joining his family in the luxury home furnishings industry, Chad manages the day-to-day operations at his companies as Sr VP of STARK and President of Scalamandre. His background enables him to direct these companies in the digital age while focusing on providing the highest level of customer service to professional interior designers. Chad is also co-author of STARK’s Decorating with Carpets coffee table book and through the end of 2017 was the President of the Decorative Furnishings Association, a trade industry non-profit, where his initiative #DoItFor has improved consumer understanding of the professional design world through increased accessibility and education.

DFA Contributing Board Member

Dan Cahoon, 

President, Jerry Pair

Dan Cahoon is CEO and President of Jerry Pair & Associates, a luxury multi-line showroom business that was established in 1970 in Atlanta and South Florida. Jerry Pair proudly offers some of the highest quality handcrafted furnishings and fabrics in the industry. In 2006, Cahoon founded Jerry Pair Leather, which provides professional designers the ultimate selection in high end, European leathers. As an experienced CEO with over thirty years in the design industry, Cahoon served as President of the DFA from 2014 – 2016. He is a graduate of Georgia State University with a B.B.A. in Finance. As a passionate and long time supporter of the home trade industry, Cahoon brings tenured experience to the DFA Board and its mission to grow and cultivate the design community. 

DFA Digital Media Liaison

Julia Noran Johnston, 

President, Business of Home

Julia Noran Johnston is the founder of Business of Home, the leading publication for home industry professionals. She is a seasoned journalist and marketer and has worked in the home category for nearly two decades, originally in magazines at Veranda and Architectural Digest. As president of BOH, she oversees content creation and distribution to over 180,000 home industry professionals online and in print.

DFA Design Center Liaison

Katie Miner, 

General Manager,

Atlanta Decorative Arts Center

Katie Miner began her career in 1999 as a tradeshow sales manager at AmericasMart after graduating from the College of Charleston. Tackling ever-increasing challenges, she grew to become the Executive Director of Leasing for the Gardens, and later, the Executive Director of Leasing for HOME at AmericasMart. In her current role as General Manager at ADAC, Katie is responsible for overseeing the overall operation of the Center, including: leasing, marketing, property management and operations for over 60 showrooms. Katie has worked with countless notable design icons, such as Darryl Carter, Vern Yip, Charlotte Moss, Nathan Turner, and more. Katie was instrumental in the Center opening to the public in 2012, creating a luxury experience for both the public and entire Southeast design community. She also serves as a board member for Design Centers International. 
 

DFA Design Center Liaison

Kristan McLaughlin 

General Manager,

Boston Design Center

Kristan McLaughlin is the General Manager, Leasing & Partnerships  of the Boston Design Center.  Kristan is also the current president of Design Centers International.

DFA Contributing Board Member

Mike Gracie,

President, Gracie Studio 

Mike Gracie studied pre-law at Northeastern University, but chose to go into the family industry instead of proceeding on to law school.  While gaining experience as a furniture salesperson at a San Francisco showroom, Mike began pursuing an acting career there.  He returned to New York to join the family business and to continue his acting career, appearing in short films and off-Broadway plays.  Mike found his greatest satisfactions and rewards in the family business where he has spent a 24 year career.

DFA Director of Media Members

Beth McDonough

Beth McDonough is the Publisher of Traditional Home magazine, a position she has held since April 2015. In this role, McDonough oversees all marketing and advertising for the brand, which maintains a circulation of approximately 868,000 and a readership of more than 4 million. Prior to taking the helm at TH, McDonough served as Group Associate Publisher, Marketing for Traditional Home, Midwest Living and Meredith Home Solutions. She first joined Meredith in 2002 as Promotion Director for Midwest Living, and has since held positions as Group Marketing Director for Midwest Living and Family Circle. She was promoted to Group Associate Publisher, Marketing, for Traditional Home, Midwest Living and Meredith Home Solutions in 2009.

McDonough was honored as one of Folio Magazine’s Top Women In Media in June 2019. She received a bachelor’s degree from Barnard College and lives in Beacon, N.Y. with her husband and two children. 

DFA Contributing Board Member

Stephane Silverman,

President, Castel Maison

Stephane Silverman is the founder, owner, and President of Castel.  He studied economics and renewable resources in graduate school. After broadening his skill set, he became sales director at Manuel Canovas and also managed export for the large textile firm, P/Kaufmann. Having a very entrepreneurial spirit, in the year 2000 he struck out and started his own fabric company.  The result is a timeless elegant textile collection.  Stephane's passions go beyond the fabrics themselves. He has also developed an in house web based software system to manage client orders, logistics and business flow associated to the many details of the industry. Stephane has many interests that have led him to the top of mountains, including Aconcagua in Argentina, to the finish line of many marathons and also competitive sailing. He lives in Westport Connecticut with his wife Laura (Castel Design Director) and his three children Zoe, Olivia and James. 

DFA Executive Administrator

Pamela Bruckbauer

Pamela Bruckbauer graduated from the Fashion Institute of Technology, and worked in the fashion industry for seven years before moving into the home furnishings industry. Her love for design and fabrics led her to Kravet where she served as their Corporate Event Planner before moving to the DFA in 2012. Pam has served as the DFA’s Executive Administrator for the past seven years. In her current role, she manages the day-to-day workings of the organization and continues to be passionate about the world of interior design. 

DFA Contributing Board Member

Meredith Xavier
Founder, The Ligné Group

Meredith Xavier obtained her B.A. in Art History from Pepperdine University and her M.Litt. in the Fine and Decorative Arts from the University of Glasgow. She studied architecture at Oxford
University in England and traveled extensively through Europe while completing her dissertation. Meredith worked as a researcher and writer for the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston before entering the decorative arts world as an auction coordinator for Christie's
Auction House in Beverly Hills. Her passion for the decorative arts and interior design industry led her to start Ligné Agency in Los Angeles in 2009. Today Meredith's focus is on growing the
brands of her global client base through business development consulting, brand partnerships, media relations and sales. In addition to running Ligné Agency and her international product distribution company, Ligné International, Meredith is a business contributor for Forbes and Design Editor for CityBook Magazine.

DFA Contributing Board Member

Katie Brockman

Group Publisher, Luxe Interiors + Design

Katie Brockman joined Sandow Media as Group Publisher and Chief Revenue Officer of Luxe Interiors + Design in September 2017. Luxe is the single most vital voice in the design space today- garnishing significant growth by landing key partnerships, growing digital presence, and expanding the brand’s footprint by launching the Southeast and Naples + Sarasota editions. Previously, Brockman worked at VERANDA for over 14 years as Associate Publisher, where she oversaw seven consecutive years of paging and revenue gains and closed the second largest September/October issue in its 30-year history. She led the launch of the brand’s most effective experiential programs, including The Art of Design Awards and Historic Preservation Summit, and conceived innovative, high-impact native content units, sweepstakes, and more.

DFA Contributing Board Member

Sara Kravet

Vice President, Kravet Furnishings

Sara Kravet is the Vice President of Furniture at Kravet Inc., having joined the family business in 2011. Sara is a graduate of Washington University in St. Louis, where she studied Art History. After graduating, she worked for 1stdibs in New York, honing her love for antique furniture. Sara then moved her life to Boston, where she currently lives with her fiancé, and fell in love with the city’s sense of historicism and fall leaves. Sara has spent the last five years learning the ins and outs of the Kravet Inc. family business through a sales lens in the Boston Kravet showroom and becoming an integral part of the New England design community. Sara joined the Kravet Inc. Furniture team four years ago with a focus on merchandising, education and marketing with a growing passion for product development. Sara is also a member of the Historic New England and Royal Oak Foundation.

DFA Contributing Board Member

Yuri Xavier

CEO, The Ligné Group

A native Brazilian originally from Rio, Yuri Xavier lived in Paris and Buenos Aires before finally moving to the United States in 2004. Starting his career in the luxury industry at Fendi Casa in Los Angeles, he worked his way up to executive leadership positions at Saks Fifth Avenue, Neiman Marcus and Mulberry. During his career in luxury retail, Yuri lead over 45 team members bringing exponential growth to each brand by generating a total of 50 million dollars in sales. In 2012, Yuri joined The Ligné Group as CEO. Since joining Ligné, Yuri has expanded the company’s branches by opening doors to international markets and developing crucial partnerships with brands and fairs such as Maison&Objet and Design Shanghai. Yuri’s expertise brings an in-depth understanding of the luxury market and a clear vision on business strategy, marketing and distribution. He is focused on creating brand awareness, lasting corporate partnerships, licensing and distribution opportunities for Ligné clients worldwide.