“Chris Madden, who attended FIT on a scholarship, has built one of the country’s top home furnishings businesses,” said Edwin Goodman, chairman of the board. “With her direct experience in publishing, television, design, and licensing, she will be a great asset to our board.”
As founder and CEO of Chris Madden, Inc., Madden’s message of turning one’s home into a haven has been shared with millions throughout America. She was design correspondent for The Oprah Winfrey Show; hosted her own show on Home and Garden television for eight seasons; had her own magazine, At Home with Chris Madden, published by Hachette; and partnered with Hearst on Your Good House magazine. She has also written 17 books, including the best-selling A Room of Her Own: Women’s Personal Spaces, which went into 12 printings. Her latest book, The Soul of a House, will be published in fall 2010 by Rizzoli Publications.
The Chris Madden for JCPenney Home Collection, introduced in 2004, was Penney's most successful home furnishings launch in its 102-year history. The collection features a complete line of home furnishings, including furniture, bedding, bath, window treatments, rugs, lamps, wall art, and decorative accessories.
Chris Madden studied Fashion Buying and Merchandising, now known as Fashion Merchandising Management, at FIT. She received a Star Salute Award from the FIT Alumni Association in 2005 and an honorary Doctor of Fine Arts degree from the State University of New York through FIT in 2007.
Additional awards include The Partnership for the Homeless Commitment to Community Award in 2006 and the International Furnishings and Design Association’s 2004 Circle of Excellence Award. To mark the 30th anniversary of her company, Madden and her team initiated Project Katrina, through which the contents of Madden's Vermont warehouse, filled with samples from her JCPenney Home Collection, were donated to families in Southern Mississippi who lost their homes and belongings to Hurricane Katrina. Project Katrina continued in 2008 and 2009 through collaborations with Architecture for Humanity and Habitat for Humanity.
FIT is governed by its own Board of Trustees, which is charged with the administration of the institution and support of its mission. Board members include Edwin A. Goodman, chair; Elizabeth T. Peek, vice chair; Richard A. Anderman; Jay H. Baker; Robin Burns-McNeill; Judith I. Byrd; William Cope, IV, student trustee; Yaz Hernández; Joan B. Hornig; George S. Kaufman; and Beverly S. Mack.
FIT, a leader in career-oriented education, is a selective college of art and design, business and technology of the State University of New York (SUNY), with 44 majors leading to the AAS, BFA, BS, MA, and MPS degrees. The college serves more than 10,000 students and offers courses in a wide range of fields.