Mark Saffel & David Ritch

Chair: Mojo

Bio: David Ritch studied Urban Planning at the University of Cincinnati before receiving his BS in Industrial Design. Mark Saffell attended Ringling College of Art and Design, where he received a BFA in Interior Architecture.

David and Mark worked side by side at Donald Chadwick's studio for nearly a decade, with client Herman Miller and were heavily involved in the design and execution of the Aeron Chair.  In 1995, Ritch and Saffell left Donald Chadwick to form the 3D portion of 5d studio.

Over the past 2 decades their studio has focused on corporate, healthcare, educational, and residential furniture. They have collaborated with a broad range of furniture clients, from large multifaceted corporations to small family businesses. Their experience spans highly developmental ergonomic task seating to more fashion driven soft seating products. They take pride in solving problems, understanding their client, and providing the best possible solution for their needs.
Ritch and Saffell, as 5dstudio, have been recognized with numerous awards including Best of Competition at Neocon, Best of Competition Nightingale Award, IDSA-Design of the Decade, ID annual Design Review, IIDEX, Good Design Award, and Interior Design Best of the Year. Their work has also been featured in exhibits at the Cooper Hewitt National Museum and the Pasadena Museum of California Design.


Fig 40

Lee Fletcher & Terence Woodside

Chair: Cache

Bio: Since 2008, Lee Fletcher and Terence Woodside have been integrating industrial design and engineering to create fig40 – an industrial design firm focused on designing award winning and compelling products through a deep collaboration with manufacturing. The studio's work centres on balancing all relationships surrounding an object: the client, the user, the maker and the materials it is made from.  These inform the design process applied to projects and form the measure applied to the work.


Tolleson Design

Gregory Saul

Chair: Pixie

Bio: Originally incorporated as Tolleson Design, Inc. in 1989, the company was recently reorganized following the retirement of company founder Tom Tolleson and the promotion of long time VP of Design, Gregory Saul, IDSA, to the position of president and managing partner.  As the creative director from the very beginning, Greg has been awarded more than thirty design and utility patents during that period.

Located in Charlotte, North Carolina, their collaborative efforts have produced award winning designs for several segments of the contract furniture market, including Best of NEOCON gold and silver awards for office seating, the Good Design award for office seating, and Adex gold and silver awards for office seating, lounge seating, desk systems and public area seating.


Phi Design

Francisco Romero

Chair: Hydro & lmpressa

Bio: After graduating with a Bachelor of Science in applied mathematics at the University of California, Los Angeles, Francisco Romero sought an apprenticeship in woodworking, with a desire to learn the trade through the eyes of skilled craftsmen. While later pursuing a Master's Degree in Architecture at UCLA, he interned under furniture designer Donald Chadwick, best known for his Design of the Decade Aeron Chair, for Herman Miller.

In 2003, he launched Phidesign, with the goal of focusing on state of the art computer and prototyping methodologies coupled with the fine art of furniture making. Since then, he has gone on to carve out a niche in mid-market seating by bringing style and innovation to his designs in a socially and economically responsible way.


Beck & Beck Design Associates

Marcel Beck & Rita Beck

Chair: Mozie

Bio: By the time Marcel Beck and his wife Rita founded Beck & Beck Design Associates in 1992, he had already travelled the world to attend furniture design shows in the pursuit of knowledge and inspiration. He leveraged these experiences for both the contract and residential marketplaces, and for the last several years his passion has led him back to his first love – contract product design.
Marcel's design philosophy is to individualize each new product to enhance and promote the company for which it was developed.