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Dear SEGD Community,
It has been my honor to lead the organization as the President of the Board of Directors for the past two years. These have been unprecedented times for the organization and for each of us as individuals. My sincere condolences if you or a loved one have suffered from or lost anyone to the COVID pandemic.
SEGD has been at the core of my professional career from my early years as an emerging designer. It has been the place I have continued to go to for inspiration and connections. The relationships I have formed both professionally and personally have had lasting impacts. The feeling of community and support has always differentiated the organization from others in my mind.
My term as President is one that I certainly did not anticipate, but one I am grateful I could fulfill given the impact SEGD has had on me. My first task as President was to form and lead a committee charged with finding a new Chief Executive Officer. My second task was to determine with the Board if the first in-person event of the year should be canceled given rumors of a global pandemic. Through these challenging years, I have been deeply inspired by the members who have stepped up to volunteer, by our sponsors who have continued to support the organization as they navigated the difficulties their own businesses faced, and by the event attendees who have openly shared their experiences and perspectives.
I would like to express my sincere gratitude to the SEGD Board of Directors and Chapter Chairs for their commitment and contributions to the advancement of the organization.
I continue to be in awe of the passionate leader that the CEO search committee selected, Cybelle Jones. Her bravery to transition from her 25+ year experiential graphic design career to fearlessly lead a non-profit organization at the onset of a global pandemic continues. While she has had to make difficult decisions, together with Jennette Foreman, Nadia Adona, Sarah Miorelli, and consultants Kristin Bennani and Franck Mercurio, the team has not only ensured the organization survived the pandemic, but in doing so, raised the bar on the level of engagement and content. We are more connected today as a global community because of their efforts and despite the fact that we continue to take precautions due to the pandemic.
Two efforts that have been initiated in the past two years that I am especially proud of are:
1. The formation of the Racial Justice Commission (RJC) that serves as an advising group to provide guidance for SEGD programs, committees and staff, across internal decision-making processes, public program development, and general organization practices. To support this effort we have engaged Brice Consulting Group, LLC, to facilitate a twenty month Anti-Racism, Diversity, Equity, Access and Inclusion Engagement Plan for our staff, board members, and chapters chairs.
2. The first phase of effort to design and develop a new website to further support our strategic goal to educate, connect, and inspire, while elevating our profession by providing easily accessible information.
We still have so much more we can and should do. I am thrilled to turn over the reins to Kathy Fry, Principal, at Mayer/Reed out of Portland, Oregon, as my term as President ends in December. I know she will be a successful and strong leader for the organization.
I am excited to retain a presence in the leadership of SEGD as an advisor to our new President as my term on the Board will continue until 2025.
We need your help, too. We have so much that can be accomplished, but it takes collaboration, volunteerism, and support. Please reach out and join us.
I wish you all a prosperous and successful 2022! Happy holidays to you and your loved ones.