Why is Emerald Lee an RGD?
Senior Designer at Gravity Inc. reflects on the opportunities for exposure, collaboration and inspiration she has enjoyed as an RGD, and the support the Association has provided in meeting accessibility requirements and responding to spec work requests. 


I’ve been a part of RGD for nearly 9 years – from a Student Member to Provisional RGD, then finally passing the Certification Exam to become a Registered Graphic Designer two years ago.


One of the reasons I look forward to November each year is because of the DesignThinkers Conference. It’s truly amazing how RGD is able to coordinate and bring on board so many accomplished and well-known creatives to speak in Toronto. I always love being re-energized with different perspectives, inspiration and finding a renewed love for design after listening to the speakers live at the conference. When I was unable to attend the event last year, the recorded videos of the speakers were a great resource and a way for me to enjoy the benefits of the conference experience even though I wasn't there. 


I currently work at a small design studio where we have a large portion of government clients with strict accessibility standards. We often refer to the AccessAbility Handbook and keep up to date with the latest requirements through webinars and events hosted by RGD. In a situation where we were unable to find answers to very specific questions, the RGD team promptly directed us to members who were able to help us. This connection eventually led to great collaboration and teamwork that quickly resolved the issues at hand. Indeed an excellent example of comradery, even amongst competitors.


Over the years, our studio has also received a few RFPs requesting  speculative work. Whenever we voiced our concern with RGD, they responded immediately – taking the initiative to contact the organization directly to inform them of the Association's no spec work policy and highlighting why the practice of spec is harmful to our industry. With a strong policy in place to enforce ethical business practice, RGD gave us the support to push back without having to confront the client directly.


Although I only participated in the Creative Directions Conference as a portfolio reviewer once, it was a real eye-opener that allowed me to see what the new generation of designers are up to. It’s a great feeling to give back to the industry and share my knowledge and experience with the younger generation.


This year, after participating in the SoGood Awards and being featured at GTEC through RGD's connection to Adobe's 'Creativity in the Public Sector' showcase, the exposure for my design work has significantly increased. Clients are always thrilled to hear they’ve been part of this success, and the exposure often results in offers for new jobs.


RGD is an organization I’m proud to be a part of because it is truly a multi-faceted community that looks out for and supports design and designers in many different ways.


To tell us what being an RGD Member means to you or to share an RGD story, email . 


To find out more about becoming a Registered Graphic Designer, click here.