by Cassidy Mantor
“Women belong in all places where decisions are being made.”
–Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg
Western Home Journal prides itself in developing and enhancing the relationships that make up the luxury mountain home architecture, construction, and design community. In keeping with our own mission of helping people bring their dreams home, we wanted to celebrate female leadership and amplify women’s voices in what is traditionally viewed as a male-dominated industry. While altering communication styles and navigating imposter syndrome might come to mind as issues that professional women frequently navigate, the leaders we’ve selected show us that there is no set formula for being successful and inspiring.
In the spirit of truly honoring these women, we also wanted to explore the different identities they take on personally and professionally, and how they find personal satisfaction while balancing work with a multitude of other roles and responsibilities including being mothers, partners, and coaches. From interior design to real estate and office management, their work speaks for itself. We are honored to have the opportunity to spotlight their accomplishments and share a little more about what makes them so special. Above all, their stories remind us that groundbreaking work in our industry is not reserved just for men.
Anne Buresh Interior Design
Anne Buresh Interior Design is an award-winning, full-service interior design firm that delivers a personalized experience in creating beautiful sanctuaries. With offices in Charlotte, North Carolina, and Jackson Hole, Wyoming, Anne brings a passion for defining each client’s unique taste to every project. Her signature style blends Southern charm with traces of a well-traveled lifestyle. For over a decade, Anne has focused on collaborations that involve a wide variety of projects ranging from new builds to large-scale renovations. Anne’s design process is built to ensure that all budgets, schedules, and key decisions are communicated with complete clarity. Above all, her inspiration supports holistic well-being that merges chic style with timeless serenity. She does not believe in a “one size fits all” mentality but works to tailor her designs to meet her clients’ specific interests and wishes. Anne Buresh believes your home should be the best reflection of you.
“The relationships I’ve formed have broadened my design perspective and continue to inspire me.”
–Anne Buresh, Anne Buresh Interior Design
whj: How did you get your professional start? How did you grow your business?
I have always seen the world through a creative lens. My grandmother was an interior designer from eastern North Carolina, which is where I first discovered my love of design. My fascination continued to flourish as I learned more about the craft behind creating beautiful interiors. The passion came first, and my career in interior design was destined to follow. In 2008, I launched my firm, Anne Buresh Interior Design. From the beginning, I prioritized the many relationships that sparked from my new career path. From clients to vendors to tradespeople, I collaborated and developed a keen attention to detail. My eye gravitates toward artistic culture and my love of travel. I now merge Southern charm with a Western influence, which was how I expanded my design business out West in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.
whj: How do you continue to grow the team that helps you get the job done?
My business dynamic is shaped towards a universal support system of vendors, clients, tradespeople, employees, and friends along the way. Beautiful relationships spark beautiful designs, and I am passionate about forming authentic partnerships with those around me. These long-lasting relationships have enabled me to be a leader and mentor in the interior design industry. I lead my team with organized strategy, purpose, and gratitude, while having fun along the way. After a design project is completed, we have a celebratory toast with our clients to celebrate the success. We should always make time to celebrate each other!
whj: Is there a moment you’re par-ticularly proud of in your career?
The relationships I’ve formed have broadened my design perspective and continue to inspire me. Participating and winning “Best Interior Design” in the Western Design Conference in Jackson Hole was a large success. It was the beginning of a new design journey, studio space, team, and diverse clientele that called for monthly travels across the country. In essence, I broke regional borders and I found a way to make a deeper design statement across North America.
whj: How are you involved in the community outside of work?
I’m a nurturer by nature and interior designer by trade, which recently led me to become involved with Furnished for Good in Charlotte, North Carolina. This nonprofit organization allows interior designers to utilize their talents to create a showhouse that raises money and collects furniture for underprivileged families in the Charlotte community. The Anne Buresh Interior Design team is extremely excited to be a part of such an amazing event and extend our talents to those in need. Interior design has the ability to transform lifestyles and can create a safe, comfortable space to call home.
Design Associates Architects
Kathy Lee moved to Jackson from the East Coast with a degree in marketing in 1998. She packed her bags, traveled out West, and never looked back. She worked in the hotel and service industry for five years before joining Chris Lee in business at Design Associates Architects (d|a).
Design Associates Architects is an established architecture firm in Jackson, Wyoming, that has been in business since the mid-1960s. For over 10 years, Kathy’s focus has been on invoicing, bookkeeping, marketing/advertising, and client relations. Since 2015, d|a has grown from Chris and Kathy to over 13 employees. Recently, they expanded to add a full-service interior design team led by Stephanie Marks and Alyson O’Steen. Their goal is to give clients a one-stop experience when building a home.
whj: Do you have a mentor & how has that relationship shaped your career?
Over the years, several of our female clients have become my mentors and been my biggest advocates. I looked up to these women entrepreneurs and they pushed me to dream bigger and achieve more. Their mentorship guided me to find my own balance with work, helping me to enjoy free time and family time. Living in Jackson Hole is all about the lifestyle, so we always try to take weekends off. Exercise is a priority too, so that we can enjoy everything outside that Jackson has to offer.
whj: Who inspires you as a role model?
My role models are typically the “underdogs” who, rather than letting their circumstances defeat them, instead use their circumstances to their advantage and come out swinging. I am inspired by Oprah Winfrey – I admire how she became the woman she is and her journey to where she is today.
“Over the years, several of our femaleclients have become my mentors and been my biggest advocates. I looked up to these women entrepreneurs and they pushed me to dream bigger and achieve more.”
–Kathy Lee, Design Associates Architects
whj: How do you set goals for your business and career?
Coffee time in the morning is our goal-setting time! Chris and I have talks weekly, discussing how to make our business more efficient and ways to improve. We have goals for business, for traveling, and for our family. All are equally important and those discussions happen over coffee.
whj: How does your team help you get the job done?
d|a Architects‘ success is directly correlated to our design team. Our designers – Architectural and Interior designers – are the best! They are dedicated and always go the extra mile with clients. Their knowledge and proficiency with our Archi CAD software is key!
whj: What advice would you give your younger self when you were starting out?
Take risks and explore! Find your passion in this world and go for it while you are young! A mentor once said, “Do something out of your comfort zone every day – you will be a better person in every way.” This is so true. When I moved out West, I took a risk and wanted to do something different. That choice made all the difference in my life.
ek Reedy Interiors
“The most important members of the team are our clients, who are as dedicated to pursuing great design as I am.”
–Katherine Reedy, ek Reedy Interiors
Katherine Reedy received a Bachelor of Science in Interior Architecture from Arizona State University. After a highly successful, ten-year career in Manhattan, she relocated to Jackson Hole, Wyoming, where she established her full-service residential and commercial interior design firm, ek Reedy Interiors. She and her skilled staff have designed much-acclaimed penthouses and personal residences in Jackson Hole, New York, Denver, Nashville, Scottsdale, and elsewhere.
The staff at ek Reedy Interiors is accomplished in every facet of interior design, from program development, interior space planning, furniture specifications, and color palette development to the final installation. Creating custom pieces – from furniture to chandeliers – is a specialty. Their utilization of a state-of-the-art computerized design system enables them to work seamlessly with architects’ drawings. Their wealth of experience, along with their philosophy of personalized service, brings an entirely new level of interior design to clients in Jackson Hole.
whj: How did you meet your mentor and how has she been integral in your career?
I met what could be best described as my mentor when I lived in New York City. She was an exceptional designer with unbelievable color, texture, and composition sense. Design was the most important thing to her and pervaded all aspects of her life. She was singularly focused on it. I never looked at anything the same way after working with her. I also learned from her singular obsession to stop and smell the proverbial roses, and also to pick one every once in a while.
whj: How do you go about finding your work/life balance?
We live in design. Design informs life, life informs design. I am always recording new data consciously and subconsciously, through the exposure to new patterns, forms, compositions, and textures – especially through travel. In Florence and Greece, I see centuries of art, architecture, and religion superimposed on life. In the islands, I see native cultural practices influencing spaces with air and light. These exposures, even the mundane, come at varying intensity and at varying times, but are always there, making a natural balance between work and life, between design and life.
whj: What are you looking forward to most this summer in Jackson?
Summer traditionally is always a busy time in Jackson Hole. Therefore, it’s all about design. But there is redemption in the fall, and it comes for me in the form of fly fishing on the Snake River. Fly fishing is, to use a hackneyed phrase, a Zen-like pursuit. It requires detachment and focus, which I find very meditative. The fly’s presentation will not tolerate partial commitment, very much like design. That’s not to say one can’t have a delicious picnic on the river and enjoy the eagles flying high overhead.
whj: Is there a pinnacle moment that shaped your career?
The key moment in my career was moving to New York City and immersing myself in the design profession. There, it was possible to see the finest of everything in our profession. Furniture design, textile design, craftsmanship, all of this was available at my fingertips. Having the opportunity to immerse myself in that environment forever changed my perception of the possibilities that lie in design. I learned how to convey ideas to reality via the craftspeople who worked in whatever realm was being pursued. It was close to a true epiphany. It was also possible to have first-hand contact with leaders in the business who had existed only as characters in print before. This experience showed me that behind the hubris of design were people of intelligence and talent who were pursuing their bliss.
whj: How does your team help you get the job done?
It takes a village to do a project, and I would be remiss if I did not acknowledge all of the people who make themselves available to my design efforts. Living in a relatively remote area makes one appreciate the reliance on the number of dedicated architects, contractors, suppliers, and fabricators who bring their talents and ability to bear. The care and quality that the general contractors bring to this industry cannot be underrated. Lastly, which should also be the first thing, the most important members of the team are our clients, who are as dedicated to pursuing great design as I am. Without them, there would be no design profession.
Tayloe Piggott Gallery
Tayloe Piggott believes that everyone deserves to live an artful life. Motivated by this philosophy, she founded Tayloe Piggott Gallery. For more than two decades, she has used her modern space to showcase unique contemporary art and fine jewelry. Always interested in artistic discovery, the gallery is a collaborative place for the local and global community to share ideas, display work, host events, and expand artistic concepts. Mindful and thought-provoking, Tayloe Piggott Gallery aims to enrich cultural dialogue by exhibiting remarkable artists in an already flourishing arts community.
“I always say that I am endlessly grateful to do what I do where I do it. I truly believe that when you love what you do, your life becomes an extension of your work.”
–Tayloe Piggott, Tayloe Piggott Gallery
whj: What inspires you?
Inspiration is a constant evolution. Over the past year, I have given a lot of thought to how I would like to present our upcoming exhibitions. While planning Paws/Pause, our August exhibition featuring renowned artist and dear friend Jane Rosen, I sought to find artwork that would harmonize with Jane’s work to create a thoughtful environment for the viewer.
This led me to study Japanese art, where I found the deeply meditative work of Kyoko Ibe, Shiryu Morita, Yuichi Inoue, and tea bowl ceramists from 15th-century Japan. I also studied the work of established artist Richard Fleischner, who creates with purposed, thoughtful intention. It is this endless curiosity to find and capture an aesthetic feeling that inspires me. I believe that a gallery is an extension of the person who runs and owns it, and I hope that when people visit the gallery, they feel a moment of aesthetic joy and freedom.
whj: How do you handle the work/life balance?
I always say that I am endlessly grateful to do what I do where I do it. I truly believe that when you love what you do, your life becomes an extension of your work. I have been in business for over 20 years, and although Jackson is a small town, the incredible people I meet through this business expand my worldview. The power of art to connect individuals across the world makes me continuously strive to learn more, see more, and understand more. The passion for my work takes me to amazing places around the world to study art, and my work/life balance becomes a true lifestyle. There is no balance—I live and breathe art, and I wouldn’t want it any other way.
whj: What are you looking forward to most in Jackson this summer?
As Jackson is coming back to life, it is a pleasure to reconnect with my friends and collectors of the gallery. Last summer, although Jackson was still very busy, the gallery felt quieter since we often did personal art viewings at clients’ homes. This summer, I look forward to welcoming visitors to see the amazing exhibitions we have been planning for the past year. Curatorially, I know I have done something right when I walk into the gallery and don’t want to change over to the next exhibition. I feel this with our current exhibition program, and I am excited to share these artful moments with guests this summer.