Debbie Millman took over as the National President of AIGA last year. I believe that Debbie represents design in its best light and gives the organization a new energy and direction. I am sure the job is a demanding one, but Debbie brings with her many years of experience and understanding to this position. She has worked as the President at Sterling Brands since 1995. At Sterling Brands her clients have included Gillette, MTV, Star Wars, Nestle, Pepsi and Campbells. Debbie has taught courses at SVA and FIT over the years gaining an understanding of our young designers and what they desire from a national organization like AIGA. She has given more talks at conferences that I am sure she can keep track of sharing her ideas on design and branding. She has contributed to our knowledge base with books, articles for design magazines and as a contributing editor of Print Magazine. Put this all together and you find someone who can take the AIGA to its next level. Someone with the energy and passion of our profession to communicate not only to fellow designers but the world around us that uses our talents. I believe one of the major missions of AIGA is to help get the word out of how design does matters and should play a key part in the decision processes of business and social issues. I believe that Debbie is helping with spreading the word and has already made the steps to help bring the organization to a new position in the minds of designers and those that use our skills.
Design does matter and Debbie Millman has been spreading this idea for several years with her Design Matters radio broadcast. I can not remember when I first came across the Design Matters interviews, but I got caught in the web of design and interview questions that Debbie presented to some of our most influential designers working today. I have been a steady listener ever since. Interviews that Debbie has presented include Stefan Sagmeister, Paula Scher, Michael Bierut, Steven Heller, Ellen Lupton, Ed Fella, David Carson, Art Chantry, and my favorite Milton Glaser. I had the privilege of taking Milton's Summer Design course at SVA back in 2007 and gained a good understanding of this man's passion and thought. Milton is a true lover of design and art, an educator, and a humble man that is intellectual on many fronts. I can state that Debbie's interviews reveal these great designers and their thoughts extremely well based on my experiences with Milton.
The Design Matters series has recently been tied in with the great blog, Design Observer. All of the Design Matters interviews are available to listen to or download to your favorite device. I have spend many a dinner break between teaching classes getting caught in the web of these interviews, loosing track of time and enjoying every minute.