HLB Lighting Design is delighted to announce that Faith Baum, HLB Principal Emeritus, has been honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award as part of EdisonReport’s 9th Annual Lifetime Achievement Awards. This esteemed recognition not only celebrates Faith’s remarkable career but also underscores her enduring legacy and influence in the field of lighting design.

Reflecting on this achievement, Faith shared her thoughts on what receiving this award means to her. Expressing a mix of pride, humility, and gratitude, she stated, “This award has allowed me to reflect on my career from a bit of a distance, unlike when my retirement was fresh and very scary.” She also emphasized the fulfillment she derives from knowing that her work has had a meaningful impact on many designers, some of whom continue to seek her out for advice and mentorship. “You spend your career just ‘doing your job,’ and it’s a surprise when you realize that other people have been paying attention. I’m honored and humbled by that realization,” she added.

Throughout her career, Faith has achieved numerous milestones that have significantly contributed to her success. Founding Illumination Arts alongside HLB Senior Principal Ken Douglas was a pivotal moment, providing her with the opportunity to create something remarkable with an incredible partner and friend. She also noted the transformative impact of merging with and being acquired by HLB, which allowed her to focus on her strengths and experience newfound enjoyment in her work.

Undoubtedly, one of the greatest lessons Faith has learned is the importance of relationships. She recalled a pivotal moment early in her journey when a client chose to work with Illumination Arts because of the strong relationship they had built. This realization underscored the significance of fostering genuine connections and emphasized the role of interpersonal dynamics in professional success.

When asked about her advice for young designers embarking on their careers, Faith shared invaluable insights:

  1. Stay curious.
  2. Never stop learning.
  3. Learn everything you can from anyone willing to impart their wisdom.
  4. Understand that lighting design is a business, and understanding that business will help you be a more successful lighting designer.
  5. Find a mentor, whether in your firm or outside the firm. That mentor doesn’t need to be a lighting designer but someone who can help you navigate your career and get you where you want to go. It’s more about recognizing the people who have something to offer and making sure you learn everything you can from them.
  6. Don’t ever get so comfortable that you think you can’t learn something new.
  7. Understand that success in any design field is about relationships. As you work with clients and others, make sure your interactions are more than transactional. It’s amazing how much more fulfilling your career can be when you are working with people you know and understand.

As we celebrate Faith’s Lifetime Achievement Award, we are reminded of the profound impact she has had on our firm, industry, and the countless individuals she has inspired and mentored along the way. Her legacy serves as a guiding light for aspiring designers and a source of pride for all who have had the privilege of working alongside her.