Year in Review: 2018

Year in Review: 2018

Rebecca Black


Looking Back at 2018

First up, I’d like to thank the 
2018 Board for all of their extremely hard work in not only getting this chapter up and running, but nurturing and growing it this last year.

A glimpse of all this board was able to accomplish:

  • We worked many hours to get 23 total events promoted and out the door.
  • At these events, we had 31 people on average attend.
  • In total, we hosted 34 speakers, and we’re grateful to 26 volunteers.
  • But probably the most impressive, we estimate we had 184 drinks consumed at Design Drinking events over the course of the year. Good work, team.

We hosted events in Fayetteville, Bentonville, Rogers, Ft. Smith, Siloam Springs and Tontitown.

The topics we covered this year included: UX & UI, Empathy, Letterpress, Career Mapping, Branding, Intersection of Business and Design, Printing, Work/Life Balance, Leadership, Freelance (Case Study Local Government), Designing for a Global Community, Designing with National Brands (Case Study Bota Box), Learning from Mistakes, In-House Design (Case Study Slim Chickens), Design Thinking (Case Study SOMOS), Defining Design, Value Creation, Community Feedback

One of the stats we are most proud of is that we went from just over 100 to almost 300 members this year. We are among the ranks of other chapters across the country like Baltimore, Charlotte, Cincinnati, Connecticut, Dallas, Portland, and more. That means that we are building a foothold of design right here in Northwest Arkansas, and that’s something we should all be proud of.


Looking Towards 2019: a New Vision

As we move into this next year, we take with us some of the lessons we learned in 2018 and build on the strong foundation we have. One of the biggest achievements we had this last year was defining a vision specific to our chapter. Our new vision is: 
an inclusive, design-driven Northwest Arkansas. Together as a board, we decided on this vision with the intention of building something bigger than just a professional design organization for the community. We believe that we, as designers, can have an impact on what the area becomes in this time of growth. We want to drive, through design, change and impact that creates a more inclusive community through many of the principles we hold as designers.

What does this mean for the upcoming year? We will be molding our programming to not only support the continued learning and development of our members, but also create spaces for you, our members, to help contribute to our community in a more impactful way. We will be partnering with organizations in our community that have a shared vision to ours to help make larger strides towards this goal.

We will continue to share more with you as we develop our mission and vision.


Join Us

As you can see, we’ve done a lot in this last year, and we plan on doing more in 2019. If you haven’t already, I encourage you to join our membership to help us build this community of designers in Northwest Arkansas. Yes, there are plenty of 
benefits to joining AIGA. But more importantly, this is about joining a network of designers that hope to make an impact on their community while advancing their craft.

One last thought I would like to clarify: we use “designer” in a broad sense here at AIGA. Although much of our membership is in the graphic design field, we are an organization for all designers, including:

Animators, Art directors, Book designers, 
Broadcast designers, Copywriters, Creative directors, Design educators, Design researchers, Design writers, Editorial designers, Entrepreneurs, Environmental designers, Graphic designers, Illustrators, Information architects, Industrial designers, Interaction designers, Multimedia designers, Packaging designer, Photographers, Product marketing managers, Shopper marketers, Software designers, Type designers, UI designers, UX designers, UX researchers, Usability researchers, Web designers, Design leaders, and more. 

I hope you’ll join us to help shape another year of impact for AIGA Northwest Arkansas.


By AIGA NWA Communications
Published December 31, 2018