RGD Designathon: 12-hour design challenge for design students & recent grads

RGD is excited to announce our inaugural Designathon, a 12-hour design challenge where design students and recent grads work in teams on a real-life design project to provide pro bono design services for a non-profit organization.



Date: Saturday, February 24, 2018

Time: 8:00 am - 9:00 pm

Location: OCAD U

Room MCA 190


Student and Provisional RGD Members are invited to sign up to participate in this event. Teams of 3-4 participants will work together on their given brief, led by a Certified RGD. This event is a great opportunity to connect with fellow designers, network and receive mentorship, while working on a real-life design project for a great cause! Sign up here.


Non-profit organizations are invited to submit a design project to be considered for the event where teams of design students and recent graduates led by senior creative professionals will provide pro bono services. Apply here.


Industry professionals (Certified RGDs) will be assigned to each group to help lead the discussion and provide guidance throughout the day.


Confirmed Mentors include:


Dominic Ayre RGD, Creative Director, Hambly & Woolley

Dominic has worked in Toronto as a designer for more than 20 years. At Hambly & Woolley, Dominic has worked on high-level strategic initiatives with not-for-profit clients such as Plan Canada, Canadian Institute for Advanced Research, Teresa Group, Vancouver General Hospital and ParticipACTION. Dom is an enthusiastic mentor to new designers with expertise in typography, digital platforms, design trends and popular culture.


Ian Chalmers RGD, Founder & Creative Director, Pivot Design Group

Ian sees design as a strategic driver to improve the health and well-being of people, services and organizations. Ian’s philanthropic desire has found him lending his expertise as a Board Member for Pencils for Kids, which provides funds for farming programs, scholarships for girls and sewing programs for girls in a small community in Nigér, Africa. His recent focus has been in the healthcare vertical, bringing people-centred design research to the work Pivot creates for clinician's, start-ups, patient communities and institutions.


John Furneaux RGD, Founder & Creative & Strategic Quarterback, Projektor

John takes a hands-on approach to every project, and works directly with clients to understand their needs and deliver insightful solutions. John's experience with the not-for-profit and public sectors spans a broad range of brand identity and communications programs with a special focus on the arts, education and healthcare. His clients have included Autism Canada, Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame, Esprit Orchestra, Habitat for Humanity, Not Far From the Tree, Pathways to Education, Realize Canada, Stratford Shakespeare Festival, Trillium Health Partners, University of Toronto and West Park Health Care.


Wendy Gray RGD, Creative Director, Gravity Inc.

Big picture thinking, strategic solutions, happy clients, discovering young talent, the privilege of teaching, mentoring, judging and contributing to the professional design industry are but some of the things that continue to motivate Wendy 20 years after building Gravity into the full-service, multidisciplinary firm it is today. Top that with Wendy's decision over a decade ago to shift Gravity’s support in favour of non-profits, and the result is a tight knit team making a difference in our community. Whether it’s a grassroot or a national non-profit, she strives to enhance its stature so it draws greater attention and greater resources. With over 50 non-profits under her belt, Wendy and her team continue to nurture strong relationships in this sector. 


Nicola Hamilton RGD, Art Director, Studio Wyse

Nicola started her career at The Grid, spent time at Chatelaine as Deputy Art Director and now, at Studio Wyse, she works with clients on narrative-driven projects. Her work, which stretches across print, web and video, has been internationally recognized by the D&AD, the Society of Publication Designers, the Society of News Design and the Canadian National Magazine Awards. 


Tina Mackenzie, Manager of Creative Services, City of Mississauga

Tina is the Manager of Creative Services at The City of Mississauga. She provides the creative leadership and direction to the design team for both print and digital media. Her team has a wide range of experience developing and designing engaging and effective work. They have been recognized by the Association of Registered Graphic Designers (RGD), Design at Work, So(cial) Good Awards, In-house Awards, Design Thinkers 2012 design partner, Transform Awards North America and Applied Arts. Tina is a former RGD Board Director.


Cai Sepulis RGD, Partner, Toque Ltd

A designer/illustrator with over 15 years under her belt, Cai’s work specializes in consumer brands (microbreweries and publishing) however she holds strong ties to not-for-profits whether they are roller derby leagues, farm-to-fork movements, children’s hospitals, music festivals or public arts galleries. Give a little, get a lot back.


Anthony Furia RGD, Founder & Principal Designer, Furia
Anthony is the principal designer and founder of Toronto-based design firm Furia. Originally from Australia, Anthony’s career has spanned 15 years and three continents with time spent in the creative industries of Sydney and London before moving permanently to Canada. Anthony’s work has featured in prominent print and online design publications and has been recognized by national and international design awards. Outside of design, Anthony enjoys traveling the globe and filling his head with whatever he can.

Laura Stein, Creative Director, Sid Lee

Laura Stein is Creative Director at Sid Lee, a global multi-disciplinary creative agency, where she focuses on design in all aspects of creative output, including branding and visual identity. Before coming to Sid Lee, she was Creative Director at Bruce Mau Design where she and her team delivered design work for a diverse set of clients from consumer electronics to contemporary art. Clients have included Canadian Olympic Committee, MaRS, DAZN, Asics, Sonos, Harvard University, Ullens Center for Contemporary Art Beijing. Work has been featured in publications such as FastCompany, Communication Arts, It’s Nice That, Creative Review as well as books such as Designing Brand Identity and Dynamic Identities and has been recognized by Cannes Lions and D&AD, among others.


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