A high-energy creative with an eye for style and a flair for outside-the-box thinking, Cathy Lee is the face of contemporary interior design in Hawaii. Her long-running column in The Honolulu Star-Advertiser, TV appearances and live décor workshops have taught thousands the basics of sophisticated home style. She started out flipping multimillion-dollar homes from Diamond Head to Kahala and word of mouth led to increasing requests from private home- and business owners. Cathy now divides her time between interior design projects, her biweekly style column and a behind-the-scenes role in her daughter Nicki’s growing philanthropic organization.

For Cathy, giving back to the community never goes out of style. She’s led fund-raising efforts for the American Heart Association, American Diabetes Association and American Red Cross. She sits on the Executive Board of the Hawaii Theatre, a nationally listed 95-year-old landmark that attracts headliners to Honolulu’s emerging Chinatown district. At the grass-roots level, she mentors girls at Sacred Hearts Academy, her alma mater, teaching business leaders of tomorrow.


Her main project now is closer to home: Cathy is program director of Kidz For A Cause, an all-kid volunteer organization founded by Nicki when she was in the third grade. In the nine years since, KFAC has raised an incredible $420,000 for Hawaii non-profits that benefit children. What started in the Lees’ living room as a children’s concert that raised $1,100 has grown steadily. In 2016, with Nicki leading an Executive Board of high school students and a Junior Board of younger kids, and Cathy mentoring them in leadership, teamwork and philanthropic skills, KFAC raised more than $300,000 for the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Honolulu’s Kapiolani Medical Center.

Now Kidz is expanding to California. With Nicki now in her senior year of high school and organizing Kidz’ FUNraising campaigns for the Ronald McDonald Houses of Hawaii and Orange County, Cathy’s roles as Kidz program director and supportive mom keep her busier than ever!


Meanwhile, she continues to reach thousands of DIY home stylists through her Celebrate Style column. Her website, cathyleestyle.com, features highlights of home and commercial design projects for clients in the luxe market. You can reach her at cathy@cathyleestyle.com.