Mother Design Founder Heads to Hello Alfred as First CCO

By Erik Oster 

New York-based in-home commerce tech company Hello Alfred hired industry veteran Michael Ian Kaye as its first chief creative officer.

In the role, Kaye will be tasked with building the company’s internal creative studio to deliver Hello Alfred’s brand message, while reporting to co-founder and CEO Marcela Sapone.

“After decades spent growing iconic brands, Michael’s incredible creative mind paired with an equally strong connection to city living is a fundamental addition to our executive team,” Sapone said. “Hello Alfred is not only a new kind of company, but it is also responsible for creating a new consumer behavior. Under Michael’s creative leadership, we’re building a brand poised to become synonymous with, and essential to, the future of city living.”


Kaye joined the company following a brief stint as an independent creative consultant. He founded Mother Design, an independent agency within the Mother network, in 2006, and also served as partner, creative director for Mother New York for over 12 years. Kaye has been honored with myriad industry awards and some of his work is housed in the Hewitt Design Museum. Before joining Mother, he served stint as an associate creative director with Ogilvy. Over the course of his career, he has worked with brands including Coca-Cola, Target, American Express, CB2, New York Fashion Week, Kate Spade, and Sundance Film Festival. Earlier in his career, he designed book covers for titles such as Malcom Gladwell‘s The Tipping Point and Chuck Palahniuk‘s Fight Club while a designer at Penguin Publishing and creative director at Farrar, Straus and Giroux.

“After years spent in agencies, there were few opportunities that’d lure me to go client-side — until I got to know this team,” Kaye said. “The opportunity to creatively define a new business category, top to bottom, is something that doesn’t often come around. In many ways, my past work and personal passions — design, style, architecture, hospitality — all lead me to a company focused on improving the way people live in cities.”