This season premiere event features Walter Herbst, chairman and founding partner of Herbst Lazar Bell (HLB), the largest independently owned design firm in the country. Mr. Herbst holds more than 85 patents in hardware, housewares and medical products. He frequently contributes articles to various trade journals and is a co-author of the PDMA Handbook of Product Development, which has become the industry standard.

Among his numerous design awards, he was recognized by Business Week magazine and the Industrial Design Society of America (IDSA) as one of the "Best of the Decade" for his design work.

HLB is consistently named one of the top ten design firms in the world by Business Week and IDSA. For more than a decade, HLB has ranked among the top winners in the Industrial Design Excellence Awards, Medical Design Excellence Awards, ID Annual Design Review, Good Design — Chicago Athenaeum Museum of Architecture and Design, Appliance Manufacturer Excellence in Design, and numerous other internationally recognized design and engineering competitions.