Meet the 2021 W+P SEGD Vanguards

SEGD Vanguards
Honoring the people who are doing incredible, visionary, meaningful work—right now.

Through SEGD Vanguards, we’re recognizing, amplifying and celebrating the designers and practitioners who are making a real difference—right now. Starting with the Wayfinding + Placemaking discipline, each list recognizes influential visionary practitioners, whose work throughout the past year has impacted their discipline—creating a more connected and inclusive world, by pioneering new ways of seeing the design process, methods, innovations—and more.

Meet the 2021 W+P SEGD Vanguards

Eric LeVine

As the Creative Director and Principal-in-Charge of NBBJ’s Seattle Experience Design and EGD studios, Eric LeVine has produced hundreds of projects that revolutionized the way people move through—and are moved by—space. He has collaborated on 21 projects which  have won national and international graphic design, architecture and branding awards, and his work has been published in Interior Design, Contract, How, Print and Communication Arts.

Eric is being recognized as a vanguard for his agility and demonstrated leadership early in the pandemic. His free extensive guide, “How to Rethink Wayfinding to Increase Infection Control and Decrease Patient Stress,” is an outstanding model to show how designers and architects can move swiftly to lend their critical expertise—beyond insights and ideas—during times of crisis and uncertainty. Eric is a SEGD Vanguard.

Ujijji Davis Williams, PLA, ASLA
As a former Associate at SmithGroup, an Adjunct Professor at the University of Detroit Mercy School of Architecture, a member of the board of Black Landscape Architects Network, and an advisory board member of the Association for Community Design, Ujijji Davis Williams uses her training and platform to close the gap on racial equity across the field of landscape and placemaking design.

Ujijji’s critical essay, “The Bottom: The Emergence and Erasure of Black American Urban Landscapes,” received two awards and opened a critical conversation about the role design plays in racial justice. She is being recognized as a vanguard for her leadership in bringing together landscape architects and contributing to an industry-wide initiative to redefine diversity, equity and inclusion. By rethinking how we approach things like “cultural fit,” mentorship programs, training, implicit bias, and more, her work can change the face of landscape architecture, placemaking and experience design—and very likely change the design industry at-large. Ujijji is playing a defining role  in how we design equity into our urban centers and our office culture.. Ujijji is a SEGD Vanguard.

Manuel Miranda
Manuel Miranda is the owner and lead designer of Manuel Miranda Practice (MMP). His work focuses on design projects related to adaptive reuse, advocacy, community and workforce development, architecture, art, design, theater and policy. Since 2011, Manuel has served as a critic in the graphic design MFA program at the Yale School of Art. He’s also been VP of the AIGA NY Chapter and was recently appointed to the Public Design Commission for the City of New York, as well as to Coro Leadership New York. 

Manuel’s body of work is powerful, beautiful, rigorous and resonant. It connects people to places and stories that are often untold, underrepresented and underfunded. Manuel plays a critical role in bridging community-based projects, civic engagement, and placemaking and wayfinding methodologies to create spaces that elevate and connect underserved communities through beautiful design. Manuel is a SEGD Vanguard.

Anna de Jonge & Carla Ramirez Sosa

Anna de Jonge is a Design Lead at Mijksenaar with experience in a variety of client sectors on projects ranging from small museums to hospitals and rail systems. Carla Ramirez Sosa is a multidisciplinary designer at Mijksenaar USA, exploring design’s potential to further social, cultural and ecological goals towards an equitable and livable future.

Anna and Carla co-authored “Beyond the Binary,” a whitepaper and wayfinding design toolkit for inclusive restrooms. This project has been recognized as a defining project impacting the field of experiential graphic design for wayfinding and placemaking for years to come. Their work shows the power of design to unite and create safe spaces for all people. We are so thankful to Anna and Carla for creating this blueprint for our industry. Anna and Carla are SEGD Vanguards.

If you missed the livestream broadcast of the SEGD W+P Vanguards Presentation, watch the recording here!

Thank you to the  W+P committee for their work to curate, deliberate and select the final list of Vanguards. The committee includes Despina Macris of Dotdash (Committee Chair), Baarish Date of Graphics Beyond, Linzi Eggers of Cloud Gehshan Associates, Cybelle Jones of SEGD, and Gary Stemler of Archetype.

Thank you to our 2021 SEGD W+P Vanguards sponsor, Archetype.