During the IALD Enlighten Americas Conference, the Lighting Industry Resource Council (LIRC) held a committee meeting that included important announcements and structural changes which are crucial for its members. Established in 1996, the council’s mission is to foster improved communication and collaboration between lighting designers and manufacturers, enhancing the industry’s offerings and educational programs.
Steering Committee Co-Chairs Carla Bukalski, from the manufacturing sector, and Alexis Arnoldi, representing the design side, opened the meeting with a reminder of the importance of adhering to anti-trust regulations, emphasizing the council’s commitment to ethical practices.
A significant shift in the membership dues structure was revealed. The LIRC has reformed its fee system to accommodate brands under a conglomerate more economically. Previously, each brand paid full membership fees; however, the new model introduces a brand-based membership at $1,000 annually, provided the parent company is a full member. While these brand-based members can enjoy most benefits, they will not hold voting rights. This amendment aims to boost IALD’s membership numbers, revenue, and engagement. Post-meeting feedback indicated a positive reception from both designers and conglomerates.
Carla exemplified the new dues structure by referring to Current Lighting. Under the new policy, if Current Lighting, as a full member paying $3,000 annually, wanted to include their brand Kurt Versen, the latter could join for $1,000 and enjoy similar benefits except for the right to vote.
In attendance were IALD President Monica Luz Lobo and CEO Christopher Knowlton, who both offered brief remarks. Lobo expressed gratitude for the ongoing support and anticipation for the initiatives, specifically highlighting the forthcoming LERN program set to launch the following year.
The meeting also featured Jill Cody, the Secretary/Treasurer, who commemorated the 25th anniversary of the IALD Education Trust Fund. She prepared the audience for a fundraising call to action, setting targets for manufacturers at $1,000 and $500 for designers and individuals. Cody further introduced a special edition lanyard available for purchase at $100 to support the trust fund.
Michael Baudo shed light on the Ambassador Program, outlining the ambassador’s role in supporting regional coordinators, liaising with local IALD chapters, communicating with LIRC members, and acting as regional contacts for non-local LIRC members attending international events.
The anticipated LERN program was detailed as a 2024 initiative, offering peer-reviewed educational content created by manufacturers and vetted by IALD members. The program will encompass topics ranging from BIM and business to lighting health and sustainability, offering a global platform of educational materials with IALD endorsement. For manufacturers looking to contribute, there is a tiered fee structure ranging from Bronze ($3,000 for one course) to Platinum ($9,000 for unlimited courses.) An early adaptor discount of 15% is available until January 31, 2024.
Before the meeting broke into individual groups, there was an overview of the successful ‘Lovers of Light’ Series, a game show-styled event that raised $40,000 for the IALD. The series saw 350 attendees across four cities—LA, Boston, Chicago, and NYC. To support the ongoing success of this initiative, LIRC will establish a committee to assist in the management. Ron Steen, who played a pivotal role in managing this program, will soon receive support from a new committee established to aid in the series’ expansion.
For detailed information and participation inquiries, the IALD and LIRC members are encouraged to visit the official IALD website and the specific portal for the LERN program at IALDLERN.com.