2018 Advisory Board

Jill Cohen is an accomplished book publishing and brand marketing professional.  Her thirty years of experience has focused on marketing through the publication of illustrated books.  After a distinguished career in the industry’s most prestigious companies, Jill has built her agency into what is today considered the “home” for illustrated books.

In 2006, Jill founded Jill Cohen Associates, to work directly with authors and brands to convey their message through books and strategic marketing.  Distinguished past and current clients include Aerin Lauder, Stephen Sills, Mary McDonald, Suzanne Kasler, Ellie Cullman, Brian McCarthy, Preston Bailey, India Hicks, Rebecca Moses, Gil Schafer, Carolyne Roehm, Bobbi Brown, James Magni, Suzanne Tucker, Timothy Corrigan, Matthew Smyth, William Hefner, Danielle Rollins, IKB Architects, Barton G. Weiss, San Ysidro Ranch, Amanda Nisbet, Ferguson Shamamian, Frye, Brioni, Hollye Jacobs, Norma Kamali, Windsor Smith and other accomplished authors and brands.

Amy Flurry has two decades of editorial experience as a contributor to some of the country’s most influential magazine titles, including LuckyCountry Living, Better Homes & Gardens, Refinery 29 and Conde Nast Traveler. In addition to generating story ideas, producing photo shoots and writing copy, Amy traveled broadly–covering trade shows in the U.S., flea markets in the south of France and boutique hotels on small Greek islands–in search of stories to share.

 Inspired by her career in publishing, Amy authored Recipe for Press (Pitch Your Story and Create a Buzz) and then took to the road, sharing editorial insights with entrepreneurs. Amy draws on her collective expertise in applying trend direction to product development and in expanding marketing strategies to connect businesses to the interior design trade.

Amy is a featured speaker at national trade shows and organizations, including ASID, High Point Market, AmericasMart, Interior Design Society, Southern Makers and Design Bloggers Conference and has been interviewed as an expert on national podcasts and publications. She also co-founded Paper-Cut-Project, a company that conceives highly crafted installations for fashion houses including Kate Spade, Hermes, Valentino, Christie’s and the Victoria & Albert Museum.  Read more at amyflurry.com.

Kyle_HoepnerKyle Hoepner’s engagement with architecture and interiors began at age twelve, when he sketched his first notebook of house plans—a series of suburban ranch designs that would now embarrass him greatly. Presently editor-in-chief of New England Home magazine, Kyle has worked in magazine publishing for over twenty-five years, starting as a typesetter for high-end publications such as The Atlantic Monthly and later as a designer and art director for numerous business, financial, and computing titles such as Fidelity Focus, Inc. Technology, MIT Sloan Management Review, and Better Software. An invitation to join the founding team of New England Home in 2005 provided a welcome opportunity to reconnect professionally with his long-held passions for home and product design. For the past six years he has helped guide the magazine as it rapidly became the preeminent home-design title in the Northeast.

adam_japko-new_266Leading up to founding Esteem Media and its managing investor role in New England Home Magazine, LLC., Adam Japko served as President of DigitalSherpa, a high growth SMB social media and internet discovery business offering content, social media, reputation management, local listings, lead generation, web business intelligence, and other internet marketing programs. The company served over 4,000 SMBs.  These experiences, along with the surprising success of his wine blog, WineZag, reaffirmed a deep belief that community engagement, quality content, and in-person networking are lethal tools for transforming brands and businesses in meaningful ways.

Prior to DigitalSherpa, Adam lead the creation of the largest network of regional luxury shelter media properties for Network Communications, Inc. While President of the NCI Home Design business, he acquired or launched all of the properties that now make up Esteem Media, Inc.’s ongoing investments.

Esteem Media, www.esteemmedia.com, is home to leading national and local media brands in the luxury home design, gardening, and fine wine communities; focused on connecting professionals and consumers around their passions and businesses. Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles, Design Bloggers Conference, Garden Bloggers Conference, WineZag, and New England Home leverage events, print media, social media, blogs, and digital marketing…but overall, community connection as the catalyst for their constituents’ commercial success.

Andrew Joseph is President of ANDREW JOSEPH PR. With experience in journalism and public relations, Andrew is a fresh, unique solution for creative professionals. A design enthusiast at heart, he decided to launch his boutique firm in 2012.  Andrew Joseph PR is a full service communications firm specializing in shelter, design, and lifestyle brands. We create programs that are customized to support our clients’ business goals and communication needs, establishing successful results. As a dynamic, passionate boutique agency with large agency capabilities, we make sure every client has personalized attention, which helps us maintain strong, long-lasting relationships. Technology and the avenues in which we trust and process “news” and information is evolving everyday, and we pride ourselves in navigating new media and brand specific avenues that elevate brands to give them a competitive edge. Our team’s impressive contacts and credentials—with key lifestyle, design and shelter publications, producers, blogs and influencers—make us a powerful force.

holly-hollingworth-269Holly Hollingsworth Phillips is a residential interior designer and owner of The English Room, which is based out of Charlotte, North Carolina. Holly’s style is elegant, eclectic and colorful. She has completed homes all over the east coast that have ranged from the super modern to very traditional while keeping it true to her style. She loves overseeing the design process from beginning to end. The best part is when your clients really trust you and set you free to do what you do best. Her love of color, pattern and layering of old and new can be seen in all her work. According to Holly, “Color makes people happy!” She loves the mixing the tradition of the past with the modern style of the future.

Holly’s early design experience includes working with Alexandra Stoddard and Sotheby’s – both in New York City. Holly completed a Mint Museum Senior Study and worked at the Atlanta Decorative Arts Center. After College, Holly lived in London while completing Sotheby’s 17th and 18th century decorative arts program. She has also completed The Winter institute at Winterthur, which provided a deep exposure one of the most complete collections of American Antiques in existence. Her first “professional” job was with Travis & Company in Atlanta where she ran the Antiques side of the showroom. In 1999, Holly joined her mother full time at the English Room in Charlotte. Her
educational background includes a degree in Art History from Rollins College and a degree in Interior Design from the American College.

She has been featured in Southern Accents, Southern Living, Charlotte Magazine, Charlotte Urban Home, Southpark Magazine and Better Homes and Gardens Windows and Walls.

Jana Platina Phipps, founder of the Trim Queen, is a trimmings expert known for her refined vision in the use of embellishment in home furnishings and fashion. A native Californian, she moved to New York City after graduating from UC Berkeley to enter the fashion industry. While studying at Parsons and FIT, she began her career as an apprentice to Italian-American artisans in a trimmings factory of the garment district, translating handbag specifications from Italian to English for Donna Karan, Ralph Lauren and others.  This lead to designing an exclusive line of accessories that sold at Bergdorf Goodman, high-end retailers across the country, and launching a successful fashion-forward trimmings collection for home furnishings that would surpass the fashion trim sales of the factory.

In 2003, after the birth of her first child, Jana became an independent consultant in branding, merchandising and sales representation for manufacturers, which ultimately lead to collaborating with trimmings producers worldwide.  She is a designer and an agent for Classical Elements in Raleigh, NC, which supplies trimmings and drapery hardware to the home furnishings industry, customizes private label programs for interior design distributors, and sells to retail stores nationally.

Affectionately called “Trim Queen” by her clients, she began to blog and use her social media channels to chronicle how the design community uses trimmings creatively. She is an embellishment expert, sharing the history of passementerie and modern embellishment trends presenting at The New York School of Interior Design, the Country Living Fairs, Robert Allen Continuing Education Seminars and at the IWCE International Window Coverings Expo. She is a  regular contributor to IWCE Vision Magazine and Universal’s smartstuff Social Station.

Jana is a recipient of the 2016 ITA Outstanding Trimmings Representative of the Year Award; she serves on the International Textile Alliance Board of Directors, is a past WithIt NE Regional VP and WithIt Future Leader Award Winner.

She is the longstanding co-chair of the WithIt New York Design Tour which has sold out for 2016, and is planning a Trim Queen Maker Tour of Venice Italy for Spring 2018.  In addition to trimmings collections, she designs a one-of-a-kind collection of upcycled accessories using trimmings and vintage jewelry and continues to teach Trim Alchemy, the concept of turning something ordinary into extraordinary using trimmings.

Jana resides in the Hudson River Valley, north of Manhattan, with her husband, writer Lang Phipps, and two children, Wilton and Giovanna, in an old Bavarian-style home that is in need of TLC and more trimmings.


elizabeth-ralls-photo-470Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles Editor-in-Chief Elizabeth Ralls is a 13-year magazine-industry veteran who has covered the shelter category in the Southeast since she began her career with Southern Accents magazine. The region’s leading design publication since 1983, Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles is published monthly, and Ralls has been at its helm for the past three years, where she has spearheaded an overhaul of the magazine’s website and digital platforms as well as debuted a new showhouse platform dedicated to exhibiting the work of the region’s most accomplished design talents with the Southeastern Designer Showhouse & Gardens, which launched in Buckhead earlier this spring. Raised in the Midwest and schooled in the Northeast, Ralls has spent the last 10 years in Atlanta, where she and her family of 5 have planted firm roots.    

mally-skokMally Skok is founder of Mally Skok Design, an interior design firm specializing in private residences and small commercial projects. Based in the town of Lincoln (west of Boston), the firm was started in 1998 by Mally, whose design flair was acquired over many years living in London, Boston and South Africa. Mally’s decorating style is to layer the old with the new, and add the unexpected. She likes to create rooms that are fresh and comfortable. She feels it is important that a room is visually pleasing but still inviting and never pretentious. Appropriate is one of her key words in decorating. Adding accessories and works of art is essential in making a room feel friendly and lived in.

Mally Skok Design Fabrics launched its first collection — The India Collection — early in 2009, followed by the Ikat Crazy in 2010, The Africa Collection in 2011, and the latest Suzani Luv in 2013. Later in 2013 we launched our Brimfield collection of fabric and wallpaper in three colourways. In 2014 we introduced our Istanbul Collection, featuring Sofia, Sofia Minor and a co-ordinating wallpaper. The Istanbul collection also has a small scale Imogen print in three colourways.

clinton-smith-280Clinton Smith is Editor-in-Chief at Veranda magazine. Prior to joiningVeranda, Clinton was editorial director of Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles since April 2008. He rejoined the brand after a period as Senior Editor of Southern Accents, having previously led AH&L from January 2003 to June 2007. Prior to that, Smith was a project coordinator for Apple at the company’s Cupertino, Calif., headquarters. From 2000 to 2001, he was Senior Editor at Wiesner Publishing and began his career as Editorial Director of New South Publishing, Inc.

Ruthie Staalsen of Ruthie Staalsen Interiors  is an award winning interior designer and rising star in the industry.  She was born and raised in Africa but has lived all over the world. With an eye for quality, a superior sense of style and an infectious personality, she is well respected for her exceptional customer service and dedication to her clients. She breaks the rules in design which gives her interiors an eclectic and unique style. She is known for creating timeless, relaxed interiors with a global influence.  She is a co-author of a new book, Behind Her Brand, Entrepreneur Edition that launched in February, 2017.   Ruthie’s work has been featured in leading design and lifestyle publications including Elite Monde and Traditional Home Magazine, Great Kitchens. She was nominated as one of the “Top 15 decorators in Dallas” and a nominee for the 2016 New Trad Home Rising Stars of Design from Traditional Home. She was voted “Best in Industry” by Society Life Magazine, “Best Rave Reviews” by Houzz, as well as “Best of Houzz” since 2012.


  1. Celeste Alexander says:

    If you would like to include some blooger of
    Diversity that would be great. We have over 400 I tetior Designers of color in our group


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