An illustrious cast of designers, executives, and thought leaders will judge the 2018 Innovation By Design Awards, Fast Company’s seventh annual celebration of creativity in design. Meet them below–and stay tuned as we add even more judges before the competition’s deadline, May 10.
Kate Aronowitz is a design partner at GV. Aronowitz has built design teams at eBay, LinkedIn, Facebook, and Wealthfront. As Facebook’s first design executive, Aronowitz grew the organization from 20 to 200, establishing multidisciplinary design teams in front-end engineering, user research, content strategy, and communication design.
Carly Ayres is a partner at HAWRAF, a design and technology design studio that engages audiences in new and interesting ways. From websites you can doodle on to generative identity systems that react to sound, HAWRAF helps brands have more meaningful, authentic interactions with their users. Prior to HAWRAF, she worked at Google’s Creative Lab and was one of the first employees at CreativeMornings.
Guive Balooch is the global vice president of L’Oreal‘s Technology Incubator, which bridges cutting-edge technology with the beauty industry. He leads an international team in San Francisco, New York, Paris, and Tokyo, uncovering disruptive innovations and creating platforms and products that sit at the intersection of design, beauty, and technology.
Jason Chua is a designer and prototyper responsible for developing disruptive innovations in a number of diverse fields. Most recently, he created Transpose, a radically customizable aircraft cabin for Airbus‘s business innovation lab–and a winner of a Fast Co. IBD award in 2017. Prior to this, he led design and research for Google’s Project Ara, lectured at the Stanford d.school, and cofounded the educational initiative SparkTruck–another Innovation By Design honoree in 2013.
August de los Reyes
August de los Reyes leads the product design team at Pinterest, where he sets the design vision for experiences that help hundreds of millions of people around the world discover and do what they love. As the former head of Xbox Design, de los Reyes spent over a decade at Microsoft where he helped pioneer multi-touch interfaces, new ways of measuring emotion, and, most recently, breaking ground for Inclusive Design in the digital arena. De los Reyes holds an MDesS with distinction from Harvard and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.
As head of user experience at Ammunition, Darcy DiNucci focuses on designing end-to-end experiences that crystallize a business’s value for the people who engage with it. Prior to joining Ammunition, DiNucci was VP of user experience for method, and has led UX programs as a consultant with other top design firms including Adaptive Path, Sequence, and Smart Design. She is the author of three books on interaction design, including the best-selling Elements of Web Design. DiNucci has been credited with coining the term “Web 2.0″ in her influential article, “Fragmented Future,” published in Print magazine in 1999.
Since 1993, John Edson has worked at LUNAR, a global design and development firm that is now part of McKinsey & Company. As a partner with McKinsey Design, Edson helps clients deliver impact through the creation of beautiful, ingenious, and delightful products and services. Products developed under his management have been honored with accolades from ID Magazine Design Annual, the Chicago Athenaeum Good Design Award, iF Hannover, PC Magazine’s Editor’s Choice Award, and IDSA’s Industrial Design Excellence Award. He is an adjunct professor at Stanford University, author, and frequent contributor on the business case for great design.
Jenny Friedler is the senior director of Planned Parenthood‘s Digital Product Lab, a team that uses technology to empower every person to take care of their sexual and reproductive health. Friedler joined the organization in 2014 to oversee key consumer-facing digital initiatives, including the national launch of online appointment scheduling, the redesign of plannedparenthood.org, and the development and launch of Spot On, a period and birth control tracking app recognized as Best App in Fast Company’s 2017 Innovation By Design Awards.
John Hoke serves as the vice president, chief design officer of Nike. Hoke leads a global team of diverse and fiercely talented designers of every discipline. Nike Design is recognized as one of the most powerful design houses within and leading a multinational corporation. Hoke completed the Stanford Executive Program, SEP MBA, Stanford Graduate School of Business and completed the Masters program of Architectural Design at the University of Pennsylvania. In 2008, Hoke was awarded the permanent title of “Fellow” for the distinguished merit within Design from the Pennsylvania State University.
There are a growing number of inclusion experts in the world. What makes Holmes unique is her level of hands-on experience applying it to mass-scale consumer technology. She is the founder of Kata, a platform of people and tools for advancing inclusion in product development and digital experiences. She also advises companies on inclusive design methods that she pioneered while in her role as Director of Inclusive Design at Microsoft. This product development approach emphasizes human diversity and results in adaptive experiences, inclusive growth, and reduced customer churn.
As managing director for the San Francisco office of Gensler, Hao Ko leads with design and is focused on building a dynamic practice through an open and collaborative culture. Working with diverse and talented teams, Ko’s projects such as The Tower at PNC Plaza, NVIDIA Headquarters, and Mercedes-Benz USA Headquarters have elevated the firm’s national and international profile and are well known for their high level of innovation and quality. He is an alumnus of UC Berkeley, where he graduated with Highest Honors, and the Harvard University Graduate School of Design.
The legendary George Lois is the most creative, prolific advertising communicator of our time. Running his own ad agencies, he is renowned for dozens of marketing miracles that triggered innovative and populist changes in American (and world) culture. In his twenties he was a pioneer of the landmark Creative Revolution in American Advertising. In 2013, Lois was voted The Most Influential Art Director of the Past 50 Years by Graphic Design USA.
Dan Makoski leads design at one of the world’s largest companies, Walmart, combining the audacity of Silicon Valley with the empathy of Sam Walton. He started Project Ara at Google, designed the original Surface at Microsoft, led design research at Motorola, was the first VP of design at Capital One, and knows seven versions of the running man.
Steve McConnell is managing partner at NBBJ and member of its board of directors. McConnell’s leadership has shaped NBBJ into a world-renowned firm known for its design excellence and technological innovation. Steve leads NBBJ’s overall strategy and operations, and he is an accomplished architect, having directed the design of the world’s largest LEED Platinum campus for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and the creation of the iconic Asia World Expo in Hong Kong.
Ceasar McDowell is professor of the practice of civic design at MIT and head of MIT’s Civic Design Network. McDowell’s work focuses on the increasing complexity of the American Public and the implications for cities and democracy. Specifically, his interest is in the design of civic infrastructures capable of supporting all members of the public to engage in collective efforts to create just, sustainable, and equitable cities.
Debbie Millman is a designer, author, curator, educator, and brand strategist. Since 2005, she has been the host of the award-winning podcast Design Matters, which is one of the world’s very first podcasts. She is also cofounder and chair of the world’s first Masters in Branding Program at the School of Visual Arts, a curator for the Museum of Design, a contributor to Print magazine, president emeritus of AIGA, and the author of six books on design and branding.
Misha Nonoo is a fashion designer whose collection aims to empower multifaceted professional women by offering them interesting, smart, and versatile pieces that take them from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Her innovative on-demand production model promotes sustainability by reducing waste, allows for personalization, and shortens the wait time for customers. Nonoo won industry recognition when she became a finalist for the 2013 CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund and was named one of Forbes‘s 30 under 30, as well as Crain’s New York Business‘s 40 under 40.
Tetsuya O’Hara is the Vice President of Gap Inc.‘s Global Innovation & Performance Center of Excellence (Aro). In this role, O’Hara and his team identify and define Gap Inc.’s game-changing innovation strategy, and seamlessly feed commercially viable product to all six of Gap Inc.’s brands: Gap, Banana Republic, Old Navy, Athleta, Intermix, and Weddington Way. Before Gap Inc., he was a head of innovation at Patagonia for 14 years.
Primo Orpilla is the cofounder of Studio O+A, a multidisciplinary San Francisco design firm that has changed the way we think about work. O+A’s designs for Facebook, Microsoft, Yelp, Cisco, Uber, Nike, and many other companies have demonstrated the power of design to make the work environment a catalyst for creativity and a vehicle for change. Recently named global chair for student experience at the International Interior Design Association, Orpilla’s new focus is empowering the next generation of designers. In 2016 O+A won the Cooper Hewitt Design Award for Interior Design. In 2017 FRAME Publishers released a comprehensive retrospective of the firm’s work: “Studio O+A: Twelve True Tales of Workplace Design.”
Edel Rodriguez was born in Havana, Cuba, in 1971. He was raised in El Gabriel, a small farm town surrounded by fields of tobacco and sugar cane. In 1980, Rodriguez and his family boarded a boat and left for America during the Mariel boatlift. They settled in Miami where Rodriguez was introduced to and influenced by American pop culture for the first time. Social justice, poster art, and Western advertising are all aspects of his life that continue to inform his work. Recently, Rodriguez’s work has focused on the political issues of our time. His print, titled Resist, references some of the dangers faced by our country at this time–how a nation built on immigration must stand up for the rights of new immigrants seeking the American dream. Throughout his career, Rodriguez has received commissions to create artwork for numerous book publishers, advertising agencies, and editorial publications. He is a regular contributor to the New York Times op-ed page and the New Yorker magazine. He has created over a hundred newspaper and magazine covers for clients such as Time, Newsweek, Der Spiegel, The Nation, the New Republic, and the Village Voice. Rodriguez’s artwork is in the collections of a variety of institutions, including the Smithsonian Institute in Washington, D.C., as well as in numerous private collections. His work has received a variety of awards from the Art Director’s Club and the Society of Illustrators in New York City.
Alex Schleifer is the head of design at Airbnb, leading the user experience, insights, content and production design teams. As a teenager he co-founded Sideshow, which produced award-winning digital work for a variety of global clients. In 2011 they were acquired by Say Media, where he became head of design, helping them redefine digital publishing. During this time he also co-founded UX Magazine, which quickly became the authority on user experience design. Schleifer is passionate about creating beautiful, engaging digital products that change the way we tell stories and make connections.
Bonnie Siegler, voted one of the fifty most influential designers working today by Graphic Design USA, founded and runs the award-winning design studio Eight and a Half. She is best known for her design work for Saturday Night Live, the Criterion Collection, HBO, Late Night with Seth Meyers, StoryCorps, Participant Media, and Newsweek. Most recently, she was the creative director of the Trump parody autobiography You Can’t Spell America Without Me by Alec Baldwin and Kurt Andersen and created the main title sequence for Will & Grace. She has taught at the graduate level for many years at the School of Visual Arts and Yale University, conducted workshops at the Maryland Institute College of Art and Rhode Island School of Design and judged design competitions all over the place. Siegler is the author of two new books, Signs of Resistance, which is a visual history of protest in America, and Dear Client, which is a book that will (hopefully) help clients work more successfully with creative people.
Hamish Smyth is a partner at Order, a New York-based design consultancy founded in 2017 with partner Jesse Reed. He is also the cofounder of Standards Manual, an independent publishing imprint focusing on the preservation of graphic design history such as the NYCTA Graphics Standard Manual, and the NASA Graphics Standards Manual reissues. Hamish previously worked as an associate partner at Pentagram New York under partner Michael Bierut, where he worked on projects ranging from the global Mastercard rebrand to the NYC DOT WalkNYC pedestrian wayfinding system.
Ian Spalter is head of design at Instagram, where he leads the team responsible for all things design ranging from cross-platform app experiences to brand and identity. Spalter was previously a senior UX Manager at YouTube, and prior to that, director of UX and design at Foursquare. Spalter also spent four years at R/GA where he oversaw design development projects such as the Nike+ Fuelband and Nike Running, Basketball, and Training products. Spalter was born and raised in New Rochelle, New York, and graduated from Hampshire College.
Clark Valberg is cofounder and CEO of InVision, the digital product design platform powering the world’s best user experiences. InVision is the cornerstone of the product design process for more than 3 million people at tens of thousands of companies, including 80% of the Fortune 100 and brands like Airbnb, Amazon, HBO, Netflix, Slack, Starbucks, and Uber.
Steve Vassallo is a general partner at Foundation Capital, where he works at the intersection of business, technology, and design. He heads the firm’s design practice and leads broader conversations among industry leaders about the art and science of building great products. Prior to Foundation, he was a project leader and design engineer at Ideo, with 77 patents and multiple product design awards to his name. Vassallo recently published The Way to Design, a guidebook for becoming a designer founder and building a design-centric company.
Emily Weiss is the founder and CEO of Glossier, a direct-to-consumer beauty company that leverages content and community to power a superior shopping experience. Weiss is heavily involved in product development, creative and brand marketing, ensuring that all products and content are created with the signature Glossier voice. After founding Glossier in 2014, the company now has over 150 employees and over $34M in venture capital funding. The company has been recognized as a top beauty brand by Allure, Teen Vogue, Glamour, Nylon, Women’s Wear Daily and Cosmopolitan, and won Women’s Wear Daily Beauty Inc.’s 2015 Digital Innovator of the Year award and is one of Fast Company‘s Most Innovative Companies of 2017. Weiss has been included in Forbes’ 30 Under 30, Fast Company‘s Most Creative People in Business 2015 and AdWeek Top 20 Content Creators 2016. Weiss lives in New York City.
Forest Young is a designer and educator. He is the head of design and global principal for Wolff Olins, where he leads design initiatives for the world’s most influential companies. Young is also a critic in graphic design at the Yale School of Art. Prior to joining Wolff Olins, Young was the executive creative director at West, leading design across a portfolio of early stage companies alongside Allison Johnson. He recently served on the board of directors for AIGA NY, and is currently teaching one of CCA’s inaugural courses–Future Design. In 2017, his team at Wolff Olins created the first open-source identity system for dotdot, a new product for the Zigbee Alliance, which won Fast Company’s Innovation By Design Award. His work has been exhibited at MoMA, the Royal Ontario Museum, and at international biennials. He is the recipient of the highest design accolades including the Gold Design Lion at Cannes and the ADC Best-in-Show Black Cube. Forest received his MFA from the Yale School of Art where he was awarded the Mark Whistler Prize.
Diego Zambrano leads design at Work & Co, bringing his unique business and brand perspective to clients such as Marriott, Showtime, the Metropolitan Opera, and Panera Bread. Before joining Work & Co, Zambrano founded Bondsy, which was featured as one of the Best New Apps on the Apple App Store. Prior to Bondsy, Zambrano was senior partner, creative director at Ogilvy NYC, where he helped win and lead the Ikea business.