After graduating from Smith College in 1967, Kitty Hawks’ first jobs were in advertising (Wells, Rich, Greene) and material development for film production (David Susskind). In 1973 she was hired as a talent agent for International Famous Agency (later International Creative Management. She moved to Los Angeles, where she represented writers, directors, actors and production designers.
Her marriage to a studio executive several years later presented a conflict of interest for the agency. She applied to and was accepted by the UCLA School of Architecture and Urban Planning. Her three years there were to change the focus of her visual and professional interest.
Upon returning to New York in 1983, Kitty worked as Creative Director for Perry Ellis International and then for Stendig International. A friend recommended her for a job decorating an apartment in the Hotel des Artistes. She set up her own firm and for the next twenty years designed a mixture of residential, commercial and corporate interiors, including the interior of a 125 foot racing sail boat. She was inducted into the Interior Design Hall of fame in 2005, and closed her office in 2008.
Kitty taught Interior Design for 6 years at the Parsons School, and for the last 20 years served very actively on the Board of the Municipal Art Society, and the Design Trust for Public Space. Her involvement as a trustee of these organizations has been extraordinarily gratifying because of their complementary missions regarding enlightened urban planning and preservation. She has also served on the Board of WNET, and presently the New York Restoration Project.
She lives in New York City and Westchester with her husband, Larry Lederman and a constant assortment of adopted dogs.