In terms of my connections and service within the RIT community, I am particularly committed to and invested in efforts that directly contribute to student growth and success. The most significant service-related contributions that I have made throughout my RIT career have been the result of working directly with and for students to encourage their growth as individuals and designers.

Although I have served on several Institute and CIAS committees, this is not my strength or my interest. I am far more productive and happier assuming a more personal and grass-roots role to serve the faculty, staff, students and alumni of the Graphic Design Department, the School of Design, the College of Imaging Arts and Sciences, the Institute, and the Rochester community.

All organizations are more successful when stakeholders/participants are valued, mentored, and invested in success. It is my belief that collaboration, communication, and community-building strategies are the keys to working with colleagues to build and maintain curricular consistency and quality. It is critical to encourage and support colleagues who are new to RIT, CIAS, and the Graphic Design program. Collaboration at all levels provides a sense of community and uni ed purpose that benefits all faculty, staff , students, alumni, programs inside CIAS, and beyond. It is my objective that students and faculty and staff colleagues know that I am always there for them. In the end, I am at RIT to serve students.

Mentorship is one of my core values as a teacher and a colleague in the RIT community. I regularly work with students in class and outside of class. If students have an interest outside the curriculum, I work with them weekly on an independent study basis. I have conducted 50 Independent Studies since tenure review. In addition, I have served on 25 MFA/MS Thesis Committees, and worked with 17 students pursuing internships. This is in addition to my full-time teaching schedule.

For the fourteen years before I was appointed a Visiting Assistant Professor in 2004-2005, I served as an Extended Part-time Instructor at RIT. I have a great deal of empathy for faculty who are tenure-track or not tenured, and I am committed to assisting and including these faculty members to ensure that they have a good teaching experience, and to encourage curricular consistency. I have served as the Faculty Mentor to adjuncts teaching senior level courses since 2006, and I meet
with adjuncts during the summer and communicate regularly as needed during the academic year. I also meet with new and junior faculty to collaborate on projects,
and to offer guidance, suggestions, and feedback.

Collaboration with colleagues is key to making the program relevant to the professional expectations faced by our graduates. Several of my graphic design colleagues and I regularly serve as guest critics in each others’ classes. In addition,
I have demonstrated calligraphy in Sarah Thompson’s Medieval Art History classes
for several years, and in Nancy Bernardo’sTypography classes. I also regularly visited Kris Holmes’ Type Design classes as a guest critic.

I also substitute for colleagues when they are ill or out of town, and help on a daily basis where needed. I support the e orts, activities and events of my colleagues whenever possible.


For more information, please visit Service/Activities, Service/Contributions, Service/Professional Service, and my CV.



Some of the most rewarding projects for me as a student, designer and teacher have been for not- for-pro t organizations. I make this experience a priority for students to have before leaving RIT. This may take the form of formal course projects or informal special events and activities.

In terms of formal course projects, one of the projects in Design Systems and Methodology is to initiate social change using design skills. Teams select a local cause or social challenge and create methods to address it using design and systematic thinking strategies. In Packaging Design, the first project is sponsored
by ABVI; the Association for the Blind and Visually Impaired. Interdisciplinary teams create universal packaging solutions that are accessible to all individuals, regardless of limitations.

To encourage and nurture a sense of community on campus, I started two student organizations with the passion of interested students: RIT Keep Rochester Club, whose mission is to serve victims of domestic violence in shelters, and the RIT Hand Lettering Club, which offers lettering services for on-campus and Rochester organizations.

I have served as Faculty Advisor and Co-faculty Advisor of the RIT AIGA Student Chapter, which connects design students to other CIAS professional clubs and to Rochester area design firms and advertising agencies. I also started the Graphic Design Blog to foster a sense of community among graphic design students, faculty, staff , and alumni.

To encourage a sense of community in the School of Design, I started the EUREKA! Interdisciplinary Design Blitz for our students to have the opportunity of working together to generate solutions for challenges facing the Rochester community. Each year, EUREKA! tackles a different problem for a different beneficiary in the city. This event has many long-lasting benefits for our students:

new friendships, learning how to work with others, creating/deepening empathy, using and refining skills learned in the classroom, and working with, and presenting to a client. Several individuals and teams have continued their exploration from EUREKA! in independent studies and capstone projects, and one team, ROC/Kicks, is pursing making its concept from last year a reality by pursuing a sponsorship with Nike. This is exciting and extremely rewarding.

Although other informal events and activities do not extend to the Rochester community, they build a sense of community within CIAS and RIT. Such events and activities that I have initiated include: The Lovin’ Letters Valentine’s Day Card Workshops, Hands-On Workshops, the Typographic Carousel Interactive Circuit Events, the Graphic Design Senior Showcase Celebration, and the Creative Industry Day Alumni Panel and Welcome Home Event. More information is provided in Service/Contributions.

In addition to service-related projects in the classroom, I encourage students to become part of the RIT community; to join clubs, donate blood, volunteer, join a team...and to contribute to the betterment of the Rochester community in some
small way.


For more information, please visit Service/Activities, Service/Contributions, Service/Professional Service, and my CV. 



The role of a graphic designer is to communicate messages to a targeted audience. Using a variety of media and methods, designers inform, direct, promote, entertain, motivate, engage, educate, touch, and persuade. It is very important to me that students understand and respect the power they have to affect society with the content and tone of the messages they create. It is critical that students have mentors in this regard.

There are three visual communicators who I often mention to students as design mentors who used or use their skills to initiate social change: Tibor Kalman, Samuel Mockbee, and John Bielenberg. These three individuals are examples of what designers should strive for in their professional lives: to be thoughtful and careful
in what types of projects, products, goods and services to represent;
to inform and educate as core values; and to contribute positively to their communities, society,
and the world.


Kalman was one of many well-respected designers who signed the First Things First 2000 Manifesto, a document that implored designers to use their talents for the greater good instead of just for commercial gain. Kalman is also well known for his shocking graphic imagery when he was Editor of Colors Magazine, highlighting social ills such as the AIDS epidemic and racism. Kalman’s rm, M & Co, produced work that was edgy, witty, and iconic. HIs work has influenced many others, including his protègè, Stefan Sagmeister.


Samuel Sambo Mockbee believed that architecture should be available to everyone, regardless of social or economic standing or condition. To show his students by example, he started The Rural Studio at Auburn Universtiy, where architecture students are required to design and build structures for poor residents.
Using donated materials and resourceful methods, over 150 residential and public buildings have been constructed by 600 Citizen Architects. This is a wonderful example of using design for the greater good.


John Bielenberg is a graphic designer, AIGA medalist, founder of Project M and activist for social change. Bielenberg has conducted Project M Blitzes around the world, where he challenges participants to Think Wrong to Do Good. CIAS conducted a Project M Event in 2014 with RIT/Gowntown: a challenge to connect RIT students to the larger Rochester community. This was the model for EUREKA!, the School of Design EUREKA! interdisciplinary design blitz project to address societal change.

In every interaction I have with students, I challenge their objectives and rationale for their decisions.I convey to them that every action has consequences. It is my sincere hope that students will integrate this thoughtful approach to their work, and that this generation will be mindful of the impact of their work on their communities and the world.

I try to serve as a role model in this regard with my varied and long-standing services to the community.


For more information, please visit Service/Activities, Service/Contributions, Service/Professional Service, and my CV.