A Contest to Educate

During Roy Diez's 34-year career at Professional Builder, he had many accomplishments, but perhaps none had as long-lasting an effect the Best in American Living Award. Working with the NAHB, Diez helped establish the premier national design contest that now celebrates its 25th Anniversary. This design contest, unlike so many others, had a significant difference, however.
By By Paul Deffenbaugh, Editoral Director | January 31, 2009

During Roy Diez's 34-year career at Professional Builder, he had many accomplishments, but perhaps none had as long-lasting an effect the Best in American Living Award. Working with the NAHB, Diez helped establish the premier national design contest that now celebrates its 25th Anniversary.

This design contest, unlike so many others, had a significant difference, however. "We worked real hard in the beginning," Diez says, to emphasize the following: they didn't want to simply "hand out trophies," and sales rates had to be included in the judging process and a devotion to educating about design trends.

"The real key thing was in emphasizing in the magazine and at dinner what could be learned form the winners. What are the trends here? Every year, we pulled out seven or eight design trends, which become almost a leading indicator of what the industry was going to look like."

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