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Photo of Karen Daroff, a 1970 graduate of Moore and world-renowned interior designer.

Philadelphia, PA (December 12, 2023) — Moore College of Art & Design (Moore) will celebrate the 21st iteration of its Visionary Woman Awards in spring 2024 and honor one of the College's own groundbreaking alumni: Karen Daroff, internationally recognized designer, business owner, principal at Nelson Worldwide, founder of Daroff Design Inc. and a 1970 graduate of Moore. The award will be presented during Moore's annual fundraising event on May 22, 2024 from 5:30–9 pm at the College, located on 1916 Race Street, on Philadelphia's Benjamin Franklin Parkway.

Moore's annual fundraising gala honors outstanding women leaders in art and design during an evening ceremony and cocktail reception. Proceeds raised benefit Moore's Visionary Honors Program, which supports a select group of undergraduate students who demonstrate academic excellence and leadership potential, providing them with tools and real-world skills to hone their talents and to pursue successful careers in the art and design fields. Daroff will be recognized at the May 2024 event for her contributions to the design field, as well as her commitment to mentoring students and recent college graduates who make up the next generation of designers.

"This year, we celebrate Moore's 175th anniversary and our unflagging mission of providing art and design students with the education and skills they need to succeed in creative industries—and there is no better time to recognize the achievements of Karen Daroff," said Cathy Young, president of Moore College of Art & Design. "Karen has made a tremendous impact around the world, thanks to her incredible vision, talent and ambition, not to mention the impact she has made on young, up-and-coming designers. We invite our friends, neighbors and the broader community to join us in celebrating Karen at this event while supporting the exceptional students in Moore's prestigious Visionary Honors Program."

Daroff is known for her design leadership and commitment to design excellence in hospitality, entertainment and restaurant design, as well as her achievements in corporate workplace, aviation terminals and museum design. In addition to completed design projects in major cities around the world, Daroff has lent her signature style to various spaces on Moore's campus, including the College’s Connelly Library, renovated in 2018.

"I'm so honored to receive Moore’s 2024 Visionary Woman Award," said Karen Daroff. "My time at Moore gave me the foundation to launch my design career. It means so much to me to be recognized for my achievements by my alma mater and to have the opportunity to give back to Moore by supporting the next generation of designers."

The event will include an exhibition of outstanding work by the honoree during a cocktail reception. Following the reception, attendees will hear from Karen Dougherty Buchholz, executive vice president of Comcast Corporation and chair of the Visionary Woman Awards Honorary Committee, followed by a lively conversation between Daroff and Nancy Glass, CEO and executive producer of Glass Entertainment Group. The evening will conclude with dessert and conversation in The Galleries at Moore.

To learn about event sponsorship opportunities and Moore’s Visionary Honors Program, as well as 2024 honoree Karen Daroff, please visit moore.edu/vwa.

About Karen Daroff

Karen Daroff, principal at Nelson Worldwide and former president and design principal at Daroff Design Inc + DDI Architects, is an internationally recognized leader in the global design community. A Philadelphia native and proud graduate of Moore College of Art & Design, she founded Daroff Design Inc. in 1973, assembling and managing an extraordinarily talented team of design professionals. In 2022, Daroff Design Inc. merged operations with Nelson Worldwide, an architecture, interior design, graphic design and brand strategy firm founded in Philadelphia. 

Daroff regularly mentors students and recent graduates aspiring for careers in the design professions. She is a recipient of numerous national design awards, including the prestigious “Designer of the Year” award by Contract Magazine, the “Design Giant” award by Interior Design Magazine, and the coveted Hospitality Platinum Circle Hall of Fame award by Hospitality Design magazine. As a successful female business owner, she has also won the Pennsylvania Governor’s Top 50 Women in Business Award and recognition by the Philadelphia Business Journal as a Top Women Owned Businesses. She is currently a board member of the Greater Philadelphia Film Office. Her prestigious client list includes Comcast, NBC Universal, Universal Studios, Disney, Liberty Property, Brandywine Realty Trust, Mohegan Gaming Authority, MGM, Loews Hotels, Marriott, Hilton, St. Regis, Ritz Carlton, Sony and Viacom, JFK, Newark Airport, and the Philadelphia International Airport. 

About Moore College of Art & Design

Founded during the original industrial revolution to advance women in new fields, Moore College of Art & Design is the first and only historically women’s college for art and design. Our mission is more relevant than ever, as technology, sustainability and diverse cultures drive and disrupt new and existing industries. Through dynamic BFA and Graduate Studies programs, educational programs for creatively curious youth and professional adult learners, and our own public and dedicated space for contemporary art—The Galleries at Moore—we are influencers and advocates for breakthrough artists and designers of all ages and backgrounds. The world needs Moore. For more information about Moore, visit www.moore.edu and follow us on social media @moorecollegeart. Visit The Art Shop at Moore online at moore.edu/theartshop.

About NELSON Worldwide

NELSON Worldwide is an award-winning firm, boldly transforming all dimensions of the human experience through architecture, interior design, graphic design, and brand strategy. With more than 600 teammates across 20 offices, the firm’s collective network provides strategic and creative solutions that positively impact where people work, serve, play, and thrive. The team combines industry knowledge, service expertise, and geographic reach to deliver projects across the country and around the world. Client partnerships across the NELSON network include Hilton, Macy’s, Comcast, Simon Property Group, Prologis, Yum! Brands, Boston Consulting Group, T-Mobile, Emory Healthcare, SAP Fieldglass, Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield, Kroger, Hyatt, Bayer, Target, and many more. Visit www.nelsonworldwide.com to learn more.

 

For press inquiries, contact:

Elissa Hill, Signature 57
ehill@signature57.com | 814.952.1170

Nicole Steinberg, Moore College of Art & Design
nsteinberg@moore.edu | 215.965.8561