That was Stephen Boyd’s response to the Herman Miller Education Solutions team’s question for college students: “Where Do You Learn Best?” Boyd was the first place winner of our first video contest encouraging students to capture on camera what makes an ideal location for learning. The contest was targeted toward full-time students attending 2-or 4-year U.S. colleges or universities.
Contest entries were accepted from January 22 through March 26, 2010. Representatives from the Herman Miller Education Solutions team selected three finalists who best represented creativity, originality, and appropriateness to the theme. Prizes were in the form of Visa gift cards: $2500 for first place; $1500 for second place; and $1000 for third place.
“We get that learning can happen anywhere,” says Jeff Vredevoogd, Herman Miller’s Director of Education Solutions. “This became clear in the student submissions. Each video shares a student’s story and captures where they learn best. Not only did they tell us where they learn best, they also told us why those places were their best places.”
Common themes that came out of the videos include the students’ desire for comfort, personalization, collaboration, and inspiration. Today’s students want options and they want the opportunity to make their own choices. So today’s campus must be able to respond.
Vredevoogd adds that the results will be of great interest to campus leadership as well as faculty and students. “This contest will promote discussion about the rapidly changing needs of students and how higher education facilities can respond to those needs,” he notes.
Our healthcare experts—many of whom are registered nurse managers with clinical and administrative experience—work to help our customers increase the quality and performance of healthcare facilities. They understand the complex relationships in healthcare delivery systems—from patient care to code compliance, from staff retention to construction planning. Together with our product offering, they translate their expertise into workable solutions.
The AONE conference was the perfect opportunity for Herman Miller Healthcare to help fulfill the vision of AONE: “Shaping the future of health care through innovative nursing leadership.” Our experts gleaned knowledge from the CEUs and networking opportunities, while our booth displayed a range of product solutions from our family of healthcare brands to help make the workplace better for nurses and facilitate patient care:
A nice tribute by Steven Heller appeared in The New York Times’T Magazine this week, honoring Don Ervin, a graphic designer and sculptor who was killed this year at the age of 85.
Ervin was known for the ads he created for Herman Miller, such as this one showing silhouettes of our classic furniture surrounding our logo mark in the center.
In addition to the logos he designed for Conoco, Met Life, Transamerica, Cargill, Abbott Laboratories, and TRW, he also created the title and poster for the 1961 film “The Misfits.”
With a bachelor’s of fine arts degree in industrial design from Carnegie Mellon University, Ervin’s career focused on corporate identity—from packaging to signage. Over the years, he worked for Architectural Record magazine, George Nelson & Company, Lippincott & Margulies, Sandgren & Murtha, Tempo Ltd., and Siegel & Gale.
Heller notes: “What stands out in Ervin’s oeuvre, and should be included in graphic design history books, exhibitions and courses (where there is nary a mention), are the logos and trademarks he created, like the Abbott Laboratories ‘a,’ which Ervin said was derived from the serpent wrapped around the staff of Aesculapius, the traditional medical symbol; the four ‘Ms’ of Metropolitan Life Insurance, designed to give the ‘gray lady of insurance companies’ a contemporary look; and Transamerica’s flowing, bifurcated ‘T.’”
Ervin had the talent to make his clients stand out. We’ll miss him for his keen eye and good ideas in graphic design.
Herman Miller is proud to be among the activists, educators, and businesspeople honored on Earth Day as one of 16 inaugural Michigan Green Leaders.The award recognizes those who are working to make Michigan’s economy and communities sustainable and vibrant.
From planting trees and recycling trash into art supplies, to making campuses, industrial sites, and a resort into environmental models, the Green Leaders range from huge corporations to tiny nonprofits and individuals. And they’re working to make Michigan a cleaner, greener place to live.
One of the judges for the award, Rick Plewa, senior vice president for sustainability for Comerica, said, “I was simply amazed at how many people are working on green issues and have been for a long time. It filled me with optimism for Michigan’s future.”
At Herman Miller, sustainability has been part of our heritage since our founder, D.J. De Pree, said, “We will be a good steward of the environment.” That was 1953. Since then, we’ve innovated new ways of preserving and living with the natural environment. We’ve also helped found associations that help other companies do the same. These days, we remain committed to getting rid of the negatives–waste and contamination. But we don’t think that’s enough. As our CEO, Brian Walker, says, “The attitude we’ve adopted is to go beyond eliminating the negative to creating a positive. We’re constantly pushing ourselves to go beyond what is required.”
Researchers at Yale’s School of Engineering and Applied Science are working toward their goal of making machines compliant to humans. In Professor John Morrell’s laboratory they have developed the Vibrotactile Posture Feedback Chair, which uses cell phone vibrators to alert a person when he or she is sitting incorrectly.
“The vibration is supposed to be an annoyance,” says Ying Zheng, who is working with Morrell. When a person slouches, leans too far forward, or crosses his legs, the tactors in those regions vibrate or pulsate as a reminder to use the right posture.
Morrell said he was first inspired to pursue the idea after visiting a physical therapist due to pain from sitting at a computer for long periods of time. He said he was constantly forgetting his therapist’s instructions, which led him and Zheng to evaluate the use of touch to remind people to sit upright with their spines in a neutral position, as recommended by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health.
In addition to the chair, Morrell’s laboratory is developing a robot that can open doors for the disabled or in dangerous situations.
Last week, Herman Miller’s own creative director, Steve Frykholm, was named one of three recipients of the 2010 AIGA Medal–the highest honor of the graphic design profession. It’s awarded to individuals in recognition of their exceptional achievements, services, or other contributions to the field of design and visual communication. Along with John Maeda and Jennifer Morla, Steve will be presented with the award at the AIGA Design Legends Gala in 2011.
AIGA executive director Richard Grefé said, “AIGA is proud to recognize the 2010 Medalists for their exceptional contributions to the field of design. Each has contributed to the way design can intrigue the spirit, engage curiosity, enhance business, explore creative use of visual technique, and communicate value that is respected by business, society and our popular culture.”
For the finishing touches on your spring holiday festivities, why not consider the delectable contrasting flavors of chocolate and orange? It’s a nice follow-up to the Steamed Halibut in Borscht and Roasted Rosemary Rack of Lamb that we offered for the first two courses in our spring recipe series.
Dark Chocolate Orange Tart
Candied Orange Peel
¼ cup sugar
2 Tbsp. water
¼ lb. unsalted butter, room temperature
½ cup sugar
¼ tsp. ground cinnamon
¼ tsp. salt
6 Tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder
¾ cup all-purpose flour
1 cup slivered almonds, toasted, coarsely chopped
2 tsp. sugar
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 cup heavy whipping cream
8 oz. bittersweet (not unsweetened) or semi-sweet chocolate, chopped
1 Tbsp. Grand Marnier
For Candied Orange Peel
Using vegetable peeler, remove peel (orange part only) from orange in strips. Cut strips into matchstick-size pieces and place in small saucepan. Cover with cold water; bring to boil. Cook 30 seconds; drain. Rinse saucepan; add ¼ cup sugar, 2 tablespoons water and peel. Stir over medium-low heat until sugar dissolves. Simmer until peel is translucent and syrup is thick, about 20 minutes. Using tines of fork, transfer peel to plate and cool.
For the Crust
Using electric mixer, beat butter, sugar, cinnamon, and salt in large bowl until smooth. Beat in cocoa powder. Add flour and beat until dough comes together in moist clumps. Gather dough into ball; flatten into disk. Wrap in plastic and chill until firm, at least 1 hour and up to 1 day.
Roll out dough between sheets of waxed paper to 11-inch round; peel off top sheet of paper. Invert dough over 9-inch tart pan with removable bottom; peel off paper. Gently press dough into pan. Press dough overhang to form double-thick sides. Pierce dough all over with fork. Refrigerate 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Bake crust until sides look dry and bottom looks bubbly, about 14 minutes. Transfer crust to rack. Using back of spoon, press up sides of dough if falling. Cool completely.
For the Filling
Toss almonds, sugar, and cinnamon into a small bowl. Chop all but two strips of peel. Sprinkle chopped orange peel, then almond mixture over bottom of prepared crust. Place cream in heavy medium saucepan. Bring to simmer; remove from heat. Add chocolate and whisk until chocolate melts and mixture is smooth; mix in Grand Marnier. Pour into crust.
Refrigerate until filling is firm, at least 3 hours. Garnish with remaining orange peel strips.
Celery Root Puree
2 medium-sized celery roots (peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes)
2 medium pototoes (peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes)
1 small onion, diced
2 tsp. butter
4 cups chicken stock
Salt and pepper to taste
Rack of Lamb 2 French-cut racks of lamb, cut in half with 4 ribs per serving
4 Tbsp. fresh rosemary, removed from stem and chopped
½ cup olive oil
1 cup dry red wine
1½ cups reduced veal or beef stock
Salt and pepper
1 bunch fresh asparagus, cut lengthwise into strips
1 tsp. olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
Celery Root Puree In a medium sauce pan over high heat, add butter and onions. Sauté until onions are translucent. Add celery root, potatoes, and chicken stock. Bring liquid to boil, reduce heat, and simmer until celery root and potatoes are tender. Remove from heat and strain.
Allow celery root mixture to cool. Place into a food processor and puree until smooth. Salt and pepper to taste. May be made one day ahead of time. Reheat in sauce pan just before serving. Note that puree may stick to pan while reheating, so stir often.
Rack of Lamb Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Season lamb with salt and pepper and rub rosemary evenly on each rack. Heat olive oil in a large skillet. Place lamb racks into skillet and sear each side until brown. Remove racks and place on a sheet pan; place into oven for 10-12 minutes, or until lamb reads 120 degrees F. Remove from oven and allow to rest for 5 minutes. Remove any extra oil from skillet; add wine and stock and reduce by half. Salt and pepper to taste.
In a medium skillet, heat olive oil. Add asparagus and sauté until tender. Salt and pepper to taste.
Assembly This dish may be served on a large platter or individual plates. Line plate with asparagus and place celery root puree over asparagus. Cut each four-rib rack into half; cross the rib bones together and place over the puree. Spoon stock reduction over lamb and serve. Garnish with fresh rosemary sprigs.
As the spring holidays approach, we thought we’d share some more recipes from Marigold Lodge, perhaps to inspire you in your own planning for Passover and Easter meals.
This is the first in a series of three recipes. Visit Discover on Fridays to find out what the next two will be.
Steamed Halibut in Borscht with Chive-Horseradish Sauce (Dairy and Pareve) Serves 8
2 Tbsp. olive oil or corn oil
1 medium onion, julienned
1 cup fennel, julienned
2 Tbsp. sliced garlic
2 sprigs fresh thyme
2 sprigs fresh flatleaf parsley
1 cup chopped savoy cabbage, plus 3 of the darker outer leaves, finely julienned
1 quart well-seasoned chicken or vegetable stock
4 cups peeled fresh beets, julienned (about 1 ½ bunches)
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1 cup crème fraiche or sour cream
¼ cup prepared white horseradish
½ tsp. sugar
1 Tbsp. chopped chives
8 halibut steaks or fillets, each 4 to 6 ounces
Heat oil in a heavy 3-quart saucepan. Add onions and fennel; cook slowly about 5 minutes, until softened. Tie garlic, thyme, parsley, and chopped cabbage in a double thickness of cheesecloth and add it to saucepan along with stock and beets. Simmer 15 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Remove form heat. Discard cheesecloth and its contents. To serve the dish chilled, refrigerate beet mixture at least 4 hours or overnight.
Bring 3 cups water to a boil in a small saucepan. Add julienned cabbage leaves, cook just until bright green, then drain. Set leaves aside, covered, to keep warm; for a cold dish, refrigerate.
Mix crème fraiche or sour cream with horseradish, sugar, and chives. This sauce can be gently warmed in a small saucepan or chilled to serve cold.
To serve, steam halibut until fully cooked outside and just warm inside, 6 to 8 minutes. Keep warm. Reheat beet mixture, spoon into warmed shallow soup bowl, sprinkle with julienned cabbage and top with fish. Serve horseradish sauce, warm or chilled, on the side.
Fast Company has once again put together its 2010 list of Most Innovative Companies—an assessment of innovative practices throughout the business world spanning creative models to real-world impact and far-sighted risk taking.
Of more than 250 companies, Herman Miller has been recognized not only as one of its Most Innovative Companies, but also as one of its “Innovation All-Stars”—a group of 59 global companies that “fought a dour economy with renewed creativity and bold initiatives.” We’re the only Michigan-based company to appear on the All-Star list and the only representative from the contract furniture industry.
Fast Company cited several of our award-winning products as examples of innovation: the Embody chair, the Setu chair, the Twist LED task light, and Teneo storage furniture system.