Jenn Zella

co-founder + chief visionary officer

cleveland, oh | atlanta, ga | naples, fl
b.a. finance + b.s. interior design

jenn zella is the co-founding principal, chief visionary officer of cid design group, an interior design, branding and forecasting firm specializing in hospitality and multifamily sectors, with clients in 35 states and 60 cities, including canada, latin america and the caribbean.

an education in finance, construction and interior design has allowed jenn to uniquely position cid offering insight and value to clients beyond the typical design engagement.

jenn has fueled cid’s growth over the past decade rising from #83 to #10 and #1 in growth on interior design magazine’s 2018 rising giants list, to most recently landing the #86 spot on the 2019 giants list. jenn passionately fosters a unique culture of action, positivity, play, curiosity and team, making cid a vibrant, fulfilling and effective work place.

since 2013, jenn has passionately championed and published a quarterly design forecast which serves the industry, clients, manufacturers, and major educational institutions as a useful tool to create engaging, unique, and long-lasting spaces and brands. jenn’s commitment to research-based design has distinguished her as an industry “go-to expert” and is routinely engaged to speak about emerging trends and forecasting.

“in this hyper evolving time we must visualize tomorrow to be ahead.”

speaking engagements:

- Lennar National Development and Management Webinar, Spring ‘18
- Crescent Communities Investors Conference, Fall ‘17
- Crescent Communities Forecast Presentation, Winter ‘17
- Bell Partners Forecast Presentation, North Carolina, Summer ’16
- Greystar Southeast Regional Conference, Spring ’16
- Greystar Design Forecast WEBEX, Fall ‘16
- Carmel Partners Annual Development Conference, San Francois, Winter ‘16
- Charlotte Apartment Association, Winter ‘16
- Austin Apartments Association, Spring ‘15
- Greystar’s Design Forum, Austin TX Fall ‘14

best design tip:

less is more

best advice:

i used to hide my work and not want others to copy it or see it until it was complete. my art & drafting instructor, brother vincente balog, taught me a lesson one day that has resonated every day since. he grabbed my partially completed drawing and shared it with the class and asked another student to use it as a springboard for their project. He pulled me aside after class and said that the only way we improve is by sharing ideas, collaborating, and allowing yourself to be inspired by others ideas! i think of him and his advice often!

hidden talent:

heptathlete. former professional jazz dancer. secret obsession with weather and climate.

trip of a lifetime:

buenos aires, argentina with my dear friend, a resident at the time.