CATHY LEE   The creative talent and public face of Hawaii’s hottest design/décor companies, Cathy Lee is president and designer of Cathy Lee Style, Cathy's Marketplace, reStyle Hawaii, CathysMarketplace.com and RSVPstyle.com. A born entrepreneur, she brings strategic planning, creative marketing and a signature flair to every venture she undertakes.

Cathy’s introduction to the home industry was more accidental than planned. The daughter of a police sergeant dad and babysitter mom, she had zero exposure to home design when the interior designer working on the house she and her husband were building stopped returning her calls. Cathy decided to tackle the project herself. A year and a half of intensive study, beginner’s mistakes and on-the-job learning produced a lush island/eclectic house with movie theater, meditation room and floor-to-ceiling views of the surrounding Hawaiian mountains. That home landed on the cover of Gannett’s Homescape magazine and launched Cathy’s career as a design diva.

Cathy continued to develop her signature style with luxury homes she purchased, remodeled, decorated and sold. Word spread, and people began asking for help in restyling their homes. Preferring instead to inspire and teach them to do it themselves, Cathy and sister-in-law Lissa Rodrigues launched RSVPstyle in 2006.

Their sold-out workshops featured fun, easy-to-grasp tips and fundamentals. Audiences responded to Cathy’s high energy, fun-loving personality and her broad range, from humble homes like her childhood one to gorgeous dream houses in Diamond Head and Kahala. The workshops brought invitations for live demos at Macy’s, the Navy Exchange at Pearl Harbor and aboard a Crystal Cruise ship.

Lessons weren't limited to live and in-person. RSVPstyle.com made them available for free via style videos and articles, and its 3½-hour Learn to Decorate with Style DVD sets were carried at Hawaii Borders, Barnes and Noble, Sam’s Club and Costco. Cathy began regular appearances on Honolulu’s ABC affiliate as its exclusive homestyle expert, and her work has been featured in national magazines and on HGTV’s House Hunters.

Today Cathy is Hawaii's best-known interior designer and stylist. Her column, Celebrate Style, appears every Sunday in the Honolulu Star-Advertiser. Cathy's Marketplace, a 4,100-square-foot consignment and retail showroom in Honolulu's University district, is filled with eclectic furniture, home accents and women's clothes and accessories. reStyle Hawaii, opened in Kakaako in 2012, offers stylish, affordable consignment, furniture touch-ups and upholstering.

With more and more clients asking for help, Cathy finally decided to add interior design services to the business mix. Her team's projects now span the island, capped off by an invitation to stage the model apartment at SixEighty Ala Moana, Kamehameha Schools' ground-breaking project toward the rejuvenation of Kakaako.

A hands-on mom, Cathy involves herself in school and community activities. She has brought her fresh ideas and energy to fundraising for the American Heart Association, American Diabetes Association, American Red Cross and Make-A-Wish Foundation. Her philosophy is that as with creating and learning, giving back should be fun.
LISSA RODRIGUES   With 20 years of expertise in information technology, Lissa Rodrigues is the company’s founding connection to the virtual world. As executive vice president of technology, she drove the slick, layered websites of RSVPstyle.com and CathysMarketplace.com, oversaw video production and had a hand in the company’s overall strategic direction.

Lissa and Cathy Lee have been friends since high school, and the two eventually became sisters-in-law. When Lissa returned to Hawaii after stints in California’s oil, retail and newspaper industries, she and her husband bought the home of their dreams. In stepped Cathy and guided her through each step of the remodel, interior design and decorating. Both realized the same thing: With inspiration, fun tips and key lessons, anybody could learn to decorate a space. The time was right for an online home décor community.

As RSVPstyle grew, spinning off the CathysMarketplace.com home furnishings website and Cathy's Marketplace, Lissa oversaw development of each online function. The resident techie, she also took the helm on producing all retail and online videos and managing online advertising.

When she’s not working on some form of technical wizardry, Lissa whips up delectable baked treats in her kitchen or prowls craft stores to supply her holiday passion of decorating Christmas trees. You can find her tree-decorating tips in the Articles section of RSVPstyle.com.
KARA WAGNER   A people person with formidable organizational skills, Kara Wagner is vice president of operations and development of corporate relations of Cathy Lee Style, CathysMarketplace and RSVPstyle. Kara’s varied experience includes training at the California College of Arts and Crafts, teaching and administrative roles at a nationally acclaimed primary school and stints as office and HR manager at large advertising and law firms in California prior to moving to Hawaii in 1997.

She has her daughter, Keri, to thank for her introduction to Cathy Lee. Friendship between Keri and her classmate Nicki, Cathy’s daughter, translated into a friendship between their moms, and Cathy asked Kara to join RSVPstyle in its infancy in February 2007. With a background in design and extensive business management experience, she quickly became the company’s go-to person for business management, event logistics and cultivating strategic partnerships in local and national business circles. Kara’s integral role was formalized in 2010 when she joined the management ranks as vice president. She oversees office operations, production schedules and community relations.

An advocate for children and education, Kara serves on the board of the Children’s Alliance of Hawaii, which provides caring environments for abused children. She volunteers at Keri’s school and other community events and loves traveling, outdoor activities and going to the movies with her family.

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