Volunteer of the Month for March 2023

The RGD thanks Will Hum RGD for his contributions to the RGD community.


“Will really has been ‘so good’ to the RGD over the years. He’s made amazing contributions to the RGD — Clear Space naming with that inaugural awards is the most visible and lasting. Working with them recently on the next Creative Earners survey campaign has been an absolute pleasure. I think talking about money is fun, but they are going to take the fun to a whole new level. Can't wait!” — Julian Brown RGD, Chair, RGD Design Committee. 
How long have you been volunteering with the RGD and in what capacity?
I co-founded Clear Space in 2004. A couple years later I became a Certified RGD. About 10 years ago, Hilary invited us to name and brand the So(cial) Good Design Awards. Since then, I have been an enthusiastic volunteer, serving as a portfolio reviewer, judge, mentor, speaker and moderator at various RGD events. Now, more than a decade after SoGood, we’re thrilled to be back as a creative partner on the upcoming Creative Earners campaign!
What contribution are you most proud of / What experience/memory stands out for you?
The continuous evolution of the So(cial) Good Design Awards brand, which we played a role in creating back in 2012, is what I take the greatest pride in. It's like a relay race, with each generation passing the baton to the next. Witnessing this progression is incredibly thrilling.
What is the most surprising/unexpected thing to come out of volunteering with the RGD?
Among the various RGD initiatives I'm involved with, I have a special fondness for the portfolio reviews and mentoring sessions with young creatives. What I find particularly interesting is how often our conversations go beyond the realm of creative work. We delve into a wide range of topics, such as business, sales, personal branding and strategies for growth. The unexpected tangents make these meetings even more rewarding.
What have you learned about the industry since volunteering for the RGD?
The creative community is flourishing and brimming with possibilities! With the ongoing digital revolution, there are now more opportunities available to individuals with creative inclinations than ever before. However, to keep up with the ever-evolving landscape, we must continually redefine what it means to be a designer and adapt to the changing times.
Based on your experience volunteering with the RGD, how would you describe the role of the organization in the industry?
I share the sentiment expressed by the RGD's President Nicola Hamilton in response to the same question, that the role of the RGD is that of a facilitator. The availability of a reputable organization such as the RGD, with a vast network spanning across the country, is an incredibly empowering resource for creatives at all levels.
What have you gained from being an RGD volunteer and why would you recommend it to other Members who might be thinking of getting involved?
I came across a profound quote that posited the search for one's gift as the meaning of life, with the purpose of life being to share that gift with others. It brings me immense happiness to be able to support and encourage emerging creatives in building momentum for their careers. This is why I am compelled to keep contributing what little wisdom I have gathered from my own experiences as a designer and an entrepreneur.
Do you have thoughts on what you might like to do as a volunteer with the RGD in the future?
Over the course of almost two decades running my own brand design firm and juggling numerous responsibilities, I gained a deep understanding of the business aspects of the industry through trial and error. This experience provided me with invaluable insights and expertise and I am confident that sharing this knowledge could prove immensely valuable to young creatives beyond just offering creative advice. I would be more than happy to contribute my expertise towards a program on this topic, should the RGD choose to establish one.
Will Hum RGD studied at OCAD U, graduating in 1996. He cut his teeth at several notable firms including the office of Canadian design icon, Burton Kramer RGD Emeritus, Bhandari & Plater and Publicis Ove Brand Design before co-founding Clear Space, a brand and digital design firm, in 2004. Will has shaped the identities and communications for some of Canada’s most notable organizations, garnering numerous awards and accolades for his work along the way. He is an active contributor to the design community, frequently working with the RGD, local and US colleges like George Brown, Humber, Centennial and San Francisco State University.