Two respected industry publications – SMPS Marketer and Principal’s Report – wrote about Joan Capelin in lengthy cover stories this winter.

First out was the December 2008 SMPS Marketer, which published as its cover story – and as much of the issue – the content of Joan Capelin’s SMPS Foundation-sponsored white paper, Resetting the Horizon Line.  “Almost no one turns a phrase like Joan, and no one has had the guts to frame the questions and issues regarding the career horizon line for marketers in such a way – until now,” wrote Randle Pollock, Marketer’s long-time editor-in-chief. 

The article asks: Do you know what’s wrong with the way design firms operate?  What about the restrictions to ownership?  Or how – and if – a senior marketer could become a shareholder?  Joan’s research and remarks reveal the structure of design firms and answer critical questions about what it takes to get to the owner’s table.  Photographs of, and comments and insights from, some of the industry’s key leaders are included. 

The second, related cover story was “Expert Questions Nonprofessionals’ Absence from Design Firm Ownership,” where Ernest Burden, the new editor of IOMA‘s Principal’s Report reported on three-hour-long special presentation at THE Marketing Event hosted by SMPS New York that Joan did along with attorney James E. Frankel. 

In the February 2009 issue, Mr. Burden zeroed in on New York State’s restrictive legislation and the ongoing effort to allow 25 percent of a firm to be owned by non-licensees.  He was intrigued by Joan’s asking the audience to imagine themselves as they will practice architecture and engineering in the future – a time that will be characterized by multidisciplinary practice, nonlicensee equity, and new service lines.  “There is a lot to like [in that situation], and you as leaders can take your firm there,” he wrote.