RGD Virtual Career Week
Dates: September 25 to 30
During this full week, senior creatives are available to provide feedback on your work, help you practice presenting yourself, answer questions and provide advice on your career path.
Meet with the reviewers/mentors of your choice from the list below, available at a variety of times. Reviewers are available on a first come, first served basis.
If you have less than 8 years of work experience and are interested in Provisional RGD Membership, this is an opportunity to have a review to qualify for this professional category of RGD Membership offering a range of benefits including use of a professional designation. Complete a portfolio review during this event to receive $25 off Provisional RGD dues for 2023!* (*New Members only.)
Members: $15 for one or $40 for three
Non-Members: $20 for one or $50 for three
Jenna Anderson (she/her), Group Creative Director, Head of Design at Cossette
Areas of expertise: Advertising, Branding, Packaging, Print, Merchandising
With 16+ years' experience focused on brand building, Jenna is a people-first creative leader. During her 5+ years at Cossette, Jenna has formed a best-in-class design team with a wide range of design experience and focus. Jenna’s has impacted many brands including McDonald’s, Harlequin, the Toronto Raptors, Kraft, General Mills, Shoppers Drug Mart and Corby.
Brian Banton RGD (he/him), Creative Director at Plan of Record
Areas of expertise: AR/VR, Branding, Motion, Print
A multidisciplinary designer, originally from Toronto, Canada, Brian has worked as a Creative Director at SAP, Visual Designer for Oculus VR at Meta Reality Labs in California, Principal Designer at Frog Design and as a Senior Designer at Pentagram in New York. After completing a Master’s Degree in design, Brian designed award-winning books, identity systems and motion graphics for cultural and non-profit institutions, before heading to New York City.
Jessica Brasil (she/her), Senior Designer at LG2
Areas of expertise: Branding, Editorial, Packaging, Print
Jessica's 8+ years as a designer go far beyond a single label. Her background has involved branding, packaging, art direction and illustration. Whether designing for local clients or national brands, Jessica brings a fresh and thoughtful perspective to her work, and is consistently motivated by a good design challenge. She has worked with: Fairmont Hotels & Resorts, Rogers, Hudson's Bay, Holt Renfrew, Audi, Rick Hansen Foundation, Wayne Gretzky Estates, Health Hut, Dominos and Spirit of York Distillery.
Natalie Coombs RGD (she/her), Senior Graphic Designer at EY (Ernst & Young)
Areas of expertise: Branding, Editorial, Print, Event Graphics, Social Media, Web Graphics
With 30+ years’ experience in both small agency and in-house design, Natalie currently supports and maintains the integrity of corporate communication standards with regard to the graphic and written brand identity of EY. She provides multi-faceted conceptual design and reproduction solutions to internal clients based on strategic, client business needs. She oversees design projects from concept through production, balances multiple priorities simultaneously and plans out resources to meet client commitments and deadlines.
Monique Gamache, Founder & Design at Matter Studio
Areas of expertise: Branding, Print, Web
Monique's ability to distil complex companies and organizations into simple and powerful brand platforms has gained her international renown. She creates and revitalizes brands from the ground up: strategizing, conceptualizing and finessing their unique visual language to speak distinctly to consumers and stand out in saturated markets. Her work has been recognized by the One Show and Type Directors Club and, has earned her a Cannes Silver Lion and a D&AD Black Pencil.
Leah Gryfe RGD (she/her), Principal at Leah Gryfe Designs
Areas of expertise: Branding, Editorial, Print
An art director, graphic design consultant, grand maintenance specialist and settler, Leah believes that good design helps people understand their environment and live life better. For 25+ years, she has been helping universities, property management companies, law firms, not-for-profit organizations, banks, publishing houses and small businesses achieve this through the design of their signage, books, websites and other corporate communications.
Edmond Huot RGD (he/him), Chief Creative Officer at Forward Studio
Areas of expertise: Advertising, Branding, Packaging, Web
Responsible for leading a range of global branding clients, primarily in the airline and transportation space, Edmond is a creative steward and designer of multi-dimensional brand experiences. From digital advertising and consultative planning to aircraft livery and experience design, Edmond works closely with clients to ensure seamless performance, profile and prestige.
Minal Kharkar RGD, Creative Director at mkbd.ca
Areas of expertise: Branding, Editorial, Motion, Social Media
Minal is a seasoned brand designer with almost 20 years' experience, spanning print, digital and social media platforms. The is passionate about taking on initiatives that blend cultural awareness and humanity. Building a distinctive brand essence, creating a strong visual presence and differentiating brands from their competition is Minal's absolute passion.
Kelly Kingdon RGD (she/her), Creative Principal & Founder at Think3 Creative
Areas of expertise: Advertising, Branding, Packaging, Print, Brand Strategy, Social Media
Kelly has spent the past 20 years working in graphic design and creative direction, helping organizations bring their visions to life across print, events and online. A branding expert with robust industry knowledge, she has led creative teams and art direction for both small businesses and corporations. She is recognized for her ability to bridge the gap between design and execution, while solving complex creative problems. Kelly’s clients include organizations in the consumer packaged goods, healthcare and financial sectors.
Trisan Marantos (he/him), Associate Creative Director at Frontier
Areas of expertise: Branding, Branding strategy, Web
At Frontier, Tristan serves as creative lead for many of its visual and strategy projects, as well as project lead for Live Magazine, a studio-run travelling editorial project. He has led projects for clients that include Youtube, Toronto Metropolitan University, University of Toronto and The Bentway. Tristan has taught Graphic Design at OCAD University and was previously a designer at Bruce Mau Design. He is a graduate of OCAD, where he was awarded the Medal for Graphic Design.
Maria Passarelli RGD (she/her), Specialist, Creative and Communications at Sun Life
Areas of expertise: Advertising, Branding, Print, Event Design
I’m one of those lucky people who loves what they do and gets to do it every day. Some of my career highlights so far include:
• Created and produced the Welcome Kit for Capital One (Canadian market)
• Received the Sun Life iStar award in recognition of outstanding individuals who contribute to business goals, and provide extraordinary service to clients – whether internal or external
• Designed and executed Sun Life’s Disability Stories Campaign
• Designed the premier white paper for Sun Life (BrightPapers) showcasing statistics with enhanced emphasis on infographics
Areas of expertise: Advertising, Branding, Packaging, Print, Brand strategy, Design systems
With a focus on brand design, Leah has 15+ years experience in the industry working from design studios to ad agencies. Adept in both digital and print, she’s worked on building new brands and rebrands and creating complete design systems.
Chris Reyes RGD (he/him), Creative Director at Everyother
Areas of expertise: Advertising, Branding, Print, UI Design, UX Design, Illustration, Typography
Before starting his own design practice, Chris worked as a designer and creative director for numerous advertising agencies in Edmonton. He focuses on delivering thoughtful, strategic, creative solutions for a diverse range of clients that include Aurora Cannabis, CBC, Edmonton Valley Zoo, City of Edmonton, Jiffy Lube, University of Alberta, and the Government of Alberta. His work has been featured in a number of publications such as Applied Arts and he was also a finalist in the RGD’s 2021 ULTRABOLD Awards.
Elyssa Schmid RGD (she/her), Designer, Mentor & Educator at IDEA School of Design, Capilano University
Areas of expertise: Advertising, Branding, Editorial
Elyssa has created unique design solutions for different innovators and organizations, including musicians, a film documentarian, cultural and design collectives, not-for-profit mavericks, magazines and corporations across Canada and the UK. Now, almost 30 years later, she shares all eh’s learned with the next generation of brand builders, teaching in the IDEA School of Design at Capilano.
In her teaching practice, her primary goal is to spark student's excitement for the boundless opportunities they have to re-draw the world around them.
Alona Topolnisky RGD, Creative Marketing at Region of Durham
Areas of expertise: Advertising, Branding, Print, Web, Accessibility, Digital Marketing, Social Media
Alona is an award-winning Graphic Designer whose work has been recognized by the EDAC and the IDEC. She has managed branding, web and marketing projects from start-ups to small and medium-sized enterprises across various industries including agriculture, sport, retail, energy, real estate and health. She loves working on projects that promote the beauty and excitement of her hometown. Brand building, problem-solving, and projects that have a meaningful impact to the community are some of her passions.
Bev Turner (she/her), Creative Director at Cactus Club Cafe
Areas of expertise: Advertising, Branding, Editorial, Packaging, Print, Web, Social media, Brand strategy, Experiential design, Photography
Bev has been in the creative industry for 20+ years and has led creative teams at lululemon and Cactus. Her expertise is in brand development, retail/restaurant brand design and developing small but mighty creative teams. She currently leads a full service in-house creative team, that keeps up with ever-changing menu items and promotions in a fast-paced environment.
Alyssa Zill RGD (she/her), Owner / Graphic Designer at Pixel & Pen Design Co.
Areas of expertise: Branding, Print, Web, Illustration, Visual Arts, Accessibility
With 15 years’ experience working with agencies and companies big and small, Alyssa has a versatile skillset that enables her to approach every project with practicality and adaptability. She specializes in a variety of media, including reports and white papers, logos and branding, print materials, hand-drawn illustrations and Squarespace websites. She takes great pride in delivering designs that are both visually stunning and effective.