WCAA Announces Recipient of the 2019 Jill Robson Memorial Member Scholarship


The Window Coverings Association of America (WCAA) is pleased to announce that Susan Sifakis, owner of SUESEWN based in Lancaster, Massachusetts, is the 2019 recipient of the Jill Robson Memorial Member Scholarship.

The Jill Robson Memorial Scholarship was founded to honor the memory of Jill Robson and to promote education in the window coverings industry for those already in the industry as well as those new to window coverings. The scholarship fund encourages and equips WCAA business owners by supporting their education and providing foundational learning opportunities to promote professionalism in the industry.

Sewing was always something that she had done, beginning in her home economics class in high school. She sewed matching dresses for her daughters as they were growing up.

But, Susan’s career in the window coverings industry began in 1995 when she attended Cheryl Strickland’s week-long class on how to run a drapery business. After that initial week, Susan sought out opportunities to further her education and learn as much as she could about the Window Coverings Industry.

She joined WCAA in 2006 and over the years has served as the President, Vice President, and Secretary of the Eastern Massachusetts Chapter.

“Being in this business and being a part of the WCAA has given me the pleasure of meeting many, many people in this line of work,” Susan said.

Through her fellow WCAA Members, she has been able to learn a great deal and further her education, as well as finding true friends for life.

Now, SUESEWN focuses on draperies, slipcovers, and upholstery, but Susan said she is motivated to do anything that might require a needle and thread because she enjoys the challenge of learning new concepts and techniques.

Over the years, she has attended numerous conferences through IWCE, INSPIRE, CHF Traveling Weekends, CSI in Texas, Slipcover Networking Workshops, and upholstery workshops. She went to CHF many times and took advanced classes in drapery fabrication.

“Receiving this scholarship in remembrance of Jill is a great honor,” Susan said. “I knew her from CHF and meeting at conferences and we both struggled with illnesses at the same time. She was a wonderful, caring woman.”

Susan will use this scholarship to attend an upholstery workshop in August.

Renee Williamson