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Designer Highlight

BHM Highlight # 4 | 5 More Black Designers To Celebrate

We've gathered 5 more influential designers & visionaries across industries to take a look at - enjoy this continued journey of celebration & education!


In recognition of Black History Month (during February and beyond), let us take a moment to celebrate and educate ourselves on the incredible legacy of some Black designers, creatives, voices, and taste-makers in our industry.

From industrial designers, to artists, architects, interior designers, and furniture craftspeople, these incredible innovators have advanced our culture and society in profound ways. All month we'll be highlighting their stories, their struggles, their triumphs, and their unparalleled contributions.

Thank you for following as we highlighted some trailblazing historical & contemporary Black creatives!

Pictured: Chuck Harrison

Chuck Harrison

Charles "Chuck" Harrison (1931-2018) a pioneering and award-winning industrial designer, was the Lead Product Designer for Sears, Roebuck and Co, rising in the ranks to become the company’s first Black executive after being turned down in 1956, told that Sears “had an unwritten policy against hiring black people.” He stayed with that company until 1993 when it closed its in-house design team and is responsible for 700+ designs - many household products we all use and recognize in our daily lives.

Chuck Harrison’s most iconic design innovations included the precursor to current Virtual Reality viewers, the classic Model F View-Master, in 1958, the transparent measuring cup, the riding lawn mower, cordless shaver, and the Dial-a-Matic food slicer. But it was his design of the first plastic garbage bin of which he was most proud - changing the soundscape of the street on garbage day forever.

In Harrison’s words: “If I were to share one thought with the design community of today and tomorrow it would be to remember that your purpose, ' your gift to the world, ' is to provide straightforward solutions to real problems for living, breathing human beings…

Harrison won the Cooper-Hewitt Lifetime Achievement Award in 2008, and several awards from Industrial Designers Society of America (IDSA), among many.
Learn More About Chuck
Pictured: Justin Q. Williams

Justin Q. Williams

Justin Q Williams is an Atlanta-based designer who is proof that design is not contingent upon people or culture. From a young age, Justin knew that design was his calling and his parents encouraged him by providing software programs to further develop his curiosity for architecture and interiors.

Today, Justin is an in-demand interior designer who is dedicated to helping others live better, one home at a time. He was a contestant on HGTV's "Design Star: Next Gen" TV show and is one of six designers who are part of Tov Furniture's Voice Collection. This collection is an upholstery and case goods collection that debuted at the spring High Point Market that promoted diversity along with new products.

His designs are not only aesthetically pleasing but are also functional, catering to people of all cultures and backgrounds. Justin's passion for design and dedication to helping others through his work has earned him a well-deserved place among the industry's leading interior designers.
Learn More About Justin
Pictured: Don Ricardo Massenberg

Don Ricardo Massenberg

Don Ricardo Massenberg is the principal and founder of DESiGN iNKREDiBLE, a residential interior design company. Based in Durham, North Carolina, he is one of the state’s most sought-after designers.

His design aesthetic is described as “classic, modern, luxury” and is also popular for his use of lush and sumptuous fabrics. He has worked on designs for many celebrities, athletes, and business owners.

Clients have praised him for his professionalism, attention to detail, and understanding of their needs. He is a member of the House Beautiful Advisory Council, and on the board of both the Alliance of Interior Designers as well as High Point by Design.
Learn More About Don
Pictured: George L. Horton

George L. Horton

George L. Horton was the founder and owner of the Second Black industrial design firm in the United States. Graduating from Rhode Island School of Design in 1961, he began his career at Corning Glass Works before joining Samuel J. Mann Associates in Englewood, New Jersey in 1969.

Four years later, he purchased the firm and expanded its capabilities, developing a diverse portfolio that included medical instrumentation, exhibit and retail showroom design, and graphic communication services. George's designs were not only aesthetically pleasing, but also functional, catering to people's everyday needs.

His work included the design of American Standard porcelain bathroom fixtures, Corning Pyroceram dinnerware, and diaper changing stations for infants. His 60 years of practice earned him multiple designs and engineering awards, solidifying his place as an influential figure in the industrial design industry.
Learn More About George
Pictured: Nile Johnson

Nile Johnson

Nile Johnson is a force to be reckoned with. Hailing from Baltimore, Maryland, this top 20 interior designer is the multi-award-winning Principal of Nile Johnson Interior Design. His accolades are well-deserved, as his work has been featured on HGTV and in publications such as Architectural Digest, Business of Home, Better Homes & Gardens, and Elle Decor.

Nile's passion for interior design has taken him from the Art Institute of Philadelphia, where he received his Bachelor of Science Degree in Interior Design, to Chatham University, where he earned a Master of Science degree in Interior Architecture. Currently residing in the western suburb of Philadelphia, Nile is an adjunct faculty member in the Interior Design department at a local college, a Board Member in the Interior Design Department at Sinclair College, and a Black Artists + Designers Guild (BADG) member.

Recently named a Rising Star of Design by Traditional Home Magazine, Nile's star is certainly on the rise - including being a part of the Tov Collection (just like Justin Q. Williams!).
Learn More about Nile