There is a reason the DS10 binary wink symbol was smiling: We have a great deal for which to be happy! It's not a small feat to celebrate 10 years in business, particularly in light of the current global malaise. According to recent data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 1 out of 3 small businesses survive 10 years or more. It's a sobering statistic that only further resonates with me now and during the holidays. Indeed, when I look back on the years and our success, the one word that immediately comes to mind is family.

Long before the Designsensory ship set sail, our parents worked hard to cultivate a sense of purpose, passion, curiosity and entrepreneurship. The values they instilled, the lessons they taught and the support they've shown are fundamental to our success and company culture. Our parents continue to be role models of love, hard work and virtue matched only by the unwavering love, support, encouragement our spouses provide on a daily basis.

As I consider our Designsensory evolution, I recognize that--given the amount of time we spend together--we are family. We don't just share projects, we share memories and milestones: engagements, weddings, births and significant life events. When one succeeds, we all succeed. When one is hurting, we all feel it. For me, working, learning and growing with our staff has been the highest privilege of my life. Their trust in each other, and in my leadership, and in Brandon's leadership, is an inspiration and an honor. The Designsensory family pushes us to be better managers, better leaders, better people.

Without the trust of our clients, we would not be here. Period. The lights wouldn't turn on, and we would lack a reason for being. To our family of clients who have entrusted us with their brands, I thank you for the opportunity to serve you, to learn from you, to grow through and with you. Your trust, patience and desire to achieve a better future makes everything we do an incredibly worthwhile journey.

I am proud to say a staggering amount has been accomplished in 10 years, yet I feel as though we've just started to hit our stride. We live in exciting times with so much opportunity. Let us celebrate the past by focusing onward! Here's to a strong 2012, and a long, bright future of great ideas that inspire, connect, transform and produce meaningful results.

Stay hungry, stay foolish, and . . . stay thirsty, my friends! ;-)

Joseph Nother
Principal & Creative Director, Co-Founder


P.S. Thank you to the members of our staff who worked hard to create the fantastic 10-year evening. In particular, Kelly Raines did an amazing job of coordinating vendors and DSers (myself included) into making decisions and meeting deadlines for the party while trying to juggle the normal craziness.

Vendors (several are DS clients) worked equally hard to put together a magical evening: All Occasions Party Rentals, with the tent and fixtures; Gourmet's Market, with tasty delicacies; Magpies, with delightful cupcake minis; and, Luxe Catering served up fabulous cocktails. As usual, Hart Graphics provided quality print materials in super swift (translate: less than 24 hours) time.

Beautiful flowers were on display, courtesy of Brandon's mother, Suzan Rochelle, and Lindsay's mother, Bekki Brine, while the delicious coffee in our DS10 mugs came from none other than Goodson Brothers Coffee, who has been a local steward of fine coffee since 1882.