AIGA Atlanta Board of Directors
Wade Thompson President
Wade is the founder and creative director of Son&Sons. He is a creative visionary with a kind heart, gentle spirit and sharp mind. What’s really nice is that he’d never ever say that about himself. He works hard to help his teams and his clients do the best work of their lives. As Vice President, Wade is helping the Atlanta chapter connect with business and cultural leaders through design. He has tremendous love for his wife, his dog and the great state of Georgia.
Elizabeth Seidle VP Programming Resources
Elizabeth Seidle is a Senior Designer at Grant Design Collaborative where she has been a member of the creative team for over 15 years. She joined the company after receiving her BFA in Graphic Design at the Maryland Institute College of Art. Early in her career, she served on the AIGA Atlanta Board of Directors for two terms as Programming Chair and Secretary/Treasurer and is currently serving a fourth term. While at Grant, Elizabeth has worked with many brands including Adobe Systems, Herman Miller, Jaipur Rugs, Contract Magazine, Benson, and Elan by Decca. Her work has been featured in STEP and Communication Arts, among other publications. In her free time, Elizabeth enjoys designing knits and participating in a few lively book clubs.
Bill Gillespie Treasurer
Bill Gillespie has been in the printing business for 40 years, and has been in sales and marketing since 1978. He was formerly the Executive Vice President of Operations for Brown Industries, a global POP company. He assumed the role of VP Sales at Bennett Graphics in July of 2013. He is recognized, nationally, for sales and sales leadership having written more than $100,000,000 in personal business during his career.
Richard Wade Morgan Secretary
Richard Wade Morgan is a multidisciplinary designer based in Atlanta. As a home grown creative from south Georgia, he graduated from the University of Georgia with a BFA in Graphic Design in 2012 and has practiced in Atlanta since. He founded Studio Wade in 2012 and has worked with numerous news outlets and brands including CNN, HLN, Turner, Dolby Labs, Cox Media, The Atlanta Journal Constitution, and numerous creative non-profits around the United States. He belongs to the social-minded design collective GROUPHUG that exhibits annually at NYC Design Week, and carries a passion for protest design. His philosophy is that teamwork produces the best outcome and that friends are better than business partners. He also brags about his family’s long line of famous southern cooks and can make a killer recipe for pound cake that once stopped an army in it’s tracks.
Carolyn Cavanaugh Membership Chair
Carolyn is a design researcher, marketer, and a practicing graphic designer. She earned a BFA in graphic design from East Carolina University’s School of Art and Design, and a BSBA in marketing from East Carolina University’s School of Business. Before moving to Atlanta in 2014 Carolyn was an active member of the AIGA Raleigh Chapter. In addition to free lancing Carolyn currently works full time at Floor & Decor as a brand strategist and designer. In addition to her love of art and design Carolyn enjoys reading, travel, taking her little dog Chloe for long walks and spending time with her husband Ryan.
Jessica Mullis Programming Co-Chair
Jessica is the Art Director for the in-house card production design team at InComm in Atlanta. She also freelances for a variety of corporate and not-so-corporate clients throughout the state of Georgia, includingJessica’s hometown of Eastman, Georgia. Following in the footsteps of a long line of University of Georgia grads, Jessica received her BFA in Graphic Design from the school in 2005. Prior to working at InComm, she served stints at two Atlanta advertising agencies. Jessica has won an Atlanta Addy and has had work featured in Print’s Regional Design Annual. She has been a key contributing member of the AIGA Atlanta Professional Development Committee since 2010, and is now serving as the Programming Chair. Jessica and her husband live in Decatur and have recently become first-time dog parents!
Lauren Foster Programming Co-Chair
Lauren Foster is an in-house visual designer at The State Bar of Georgia. She also freelances for startup technology companies which has sparked her interest and ongoing pursuit of UX design. Lauren graduated from UGA with a dual Marketing and Advertising degree in 2014. Prior to The State Bar of Georgia, Lauren has interned at creative agencies, Atlanta magazines, newspapers, nonprofits and education institutions. Although she clearly has a strong visual design background with a love for branding, Lauren is fascinated with airports, public transportation and other systems that offer unique experiences through intricate design. She hopes to work on more impactful design projects moving forward in her career. Lauren loves the outdoors, loves to travel, loves working out and most importantly, loves exploring Atlanta’s design community. With that said, she is beyond excited to embark on her first year on the AIGA Board.
Jess Gerjets Communications Co-Chair
Jess is a Designer at Porchlight where she has been a member of the creative team for 2 years.She received her BFA in Graphic Design and Photography at the University of West Georgia.She then attended Portfolio Center where she got her certificate in Design. She has been involved in AIGA Atlanta since 2009 serving on the Student Board as Vice President and then later on as President. While at Porchlight, Jess has worked with brands such as Yamaha Motorsports, Floor & Decor, TTI, and Berry Plastics. She loves to travel, read, and cook in her free time.
Larry Luk Communications Co-Chair
Larry Luk is a Design Lead at Son&Sons. Larry’s versatility as a designer allows him to move easily between illustration, writing, and content generation. No project is too big for him, maybe because he was born and raised in Texas. Now a true Atlantan, he has acquired the same pride and passion for this city, and he’s doing his part to make it the first choice for top talent and industry. He took his own leap of faith in Atlanta when heand some of his grad school classmates started their own brand, We Are The Process.
Besides having a strong entrepreneurial spirit, Larry is chronically young; he is particularly interested in using his variety of skills to analyze trends and shape youth culture. It is difficult to tell if he is more fascinated by sneaker culture or social media.
Hank Richardson Education Co-Chair & AIGA Fellow
Hank is the Design Coach at Portfolio Center. He is an AIGA FELLOW and recipient of the New York Art Director’s Club 2010 Grandmaster Teacher’s Award. He is a Director of the Museum of Design Atlanta and has served on the AIGA National Board and board of The Society of Typographic Aficionados. He is the AIGA/Atlanta Education Co-Chair. As an educator he brings strategic design-thinking into his teaching integrating design, business and technology. Hank advises student leadership teams that translate design-led business development for start-up companies and products within a real world context. Hank works with industry leaders from The Coca-Cola Company, Georgia Tech School of Architecture, and the Advanced Technology Development Center at Georgia Tech among others. He has contributed to such books as Design Wisdom, The Education of a Graphic Designer, Becoming a Graphic Designer, Design for Communications,The Education of a Typographer, Graphis, and Teaching Graphic Design. He travels widely, speaking at universities, and conducting workshops and seminars at conferences around the country. His students inhabit the most respected corporations, design firms, advertising agencies and entrepreneurial companies in the world — living testaments to his ability to nudge each student to a personal threshold where their best work is conceived.
Nakita M. Pope Education Co-Chair
Nakita M. Pope is the Chief Chick and a Brand Strategist at Branding Chicks, a boutique branding and graphic design studio in Atlanta, GA. She holds a B.A. in Graphic Design from Hampton University and a Professional Degree in Graphic Design from the Portfolio Center. Over the past 16 years, she has worked as a graphic designer, marketer, professor, public speaker, and brand strategist. She has been an instructor at The Creative Circus for the past 8 years, where she teaches advertising strategy, branding and graphic design. Her students inspire her as much as she inspires them, and they continue to remind her why she loves this work so much. These experiences provided a pathway to creating Branding Chicks, which specializes in marketing for women-owned businesses and female-focused brands all over the country. She’s also committed to using her talents to contribute to the Atlanta community and the creative community-at-large, which has lead to her involvement in several organizations including AIGA Atlanta, the AIGA National Diversity & Inclusion Task Force, One Love Generation and Good Thinking Atlanta. In her spare time, she looks for new ways to express her love for shoes, cupcakes, travel and typography.
Jay Rogers Business of Design Co-Chair
Jay Rogers is Owner and Creative Director of Jayro Design & Illustration, a studio that provides design and illustration for entertainment companies and kids media with a particular knack for youth and pop culture, animation, and entertainment. A partial list of clients includes Walt Disney Imagineering, Penguin Books, Universal Orlando for Wrenhouse Design, American Greetings, Cartoon Network/Adult Swim, TBS/TNT and BBC America. Prior to founding his own studio, Jay worked as an Art Director at Cartoon Network. He graduated from the Ringling College of Art & Design with a BFA in Illustration.
Jay organizes and hosts the Studio Owner’s Roundtable for AIGA Atlanta and continues to develop new local Business of Design initiatives. Prior to being on the board, Jay served on the Professional Development Committee and helped to steer developmental programming for the Atlanta chapter.
Therese Huffman Business of Design Co-Chair
Described as “peripatetic”, or one that walks about continually while talking or teaching, Therese works to channel the energy towards advancing skills that combine realms of graphic design and branding with 3D forms of display, exhibits, and signage. A graduate of Rhode Island School of Design, BFA Graphic Design, Therese began her career with a EU Grant to work at the Kilkenny Design Workshops, established as Ireland’s National Design Agency. St. Louis 1993, Therese established Signature Design as a collaborative firm specializing in interpretive design, wayfinding, and signage for visitor centers, museums, historic sites, state and national parks, and botanical gardens. Since her arrival to the Atlanta community a few years ago, Therese has expanded the firm’s vision into programs for entire neighborhoods and cities. She is planning interpretive experiences along streets, sidewalks, trails, plazas, and community parks with the goal of translating the unique story of a place into physical expressions in the landscape that instigate intellectual and emotional connection to that place, while simultaneously advancing tourism and economic development in the community. Clients include Cities of Atlanta, Buckhead, Augusta, Tifton, Gray, Chamblee, and Southeast Region of the National Park Service.
Dallas Duncan Franklin In-House Chair
Dallas Duncan Franklin is the Art Director at Neenah Paper and comes to the AIGA Atlanta Board with over 13 years experience in the design industry. Dallas is passionate about typography and an avid believer in strong, simple communication that informs as well as surprises. Her work has been published in Graphis, Communication Arts, and Graphic Design USA, among others. A native West Texan, Dallas is a graduate of Georgetown University and Portfolio Center. She enjoys gardening, preserving, pickling, and canning her signature “jammies”. Dallas lives in Atlanta, GA with her husband, three dogs, and two cats.
David Laufer President Emeritus
David Laufer holds a BFA in Design from Carnegie-Mellon University where he was a Phi Kappa Phi Scholar and Champion International Corporation Imagination Scholar. David worked as art director for Oxford University Press, New York, where he designed a 500th anniversary branding program as well as designing numerous books. He was on the founding board of AIGA Atlanta. He is also a past president of the National Investor Relations Institute Atlanta chapter. His design for the annual report of PGN, the state natural gas distribution company of Indonesia, was ranked #1 out of 6,000 worldwide by the LACP Vision awards. David is the author of Dialogues with Creative Legends, Aha Moments in a Designer’s Career. (New Riders Press, 2013) David is the managing partner of BrandBook LLC, Atlanta, a multidisciplinary design consultancy. He is also active in the global “Little Free Library” movement.