On Saturday, September 9, 2017 AIGA Colorado’s Diversity and Inclusion program held the chapter’s first Diversity and Inclusion Retreat: Diversity of Thought facilitated by chairs Jade Gallegos and Daisy Corso. Held at Gensler in downtown Denver, the day started with a silent icebreaker that set the atmosphere and space to be one of safety, listening, solidarity and comradery. Some 35 participants attended the retreat, including both AIGA members and non-members.
The highlight of the retreat was the incredibly diverse panel discussion, featuring panelists Ken Garcia (Ellen Bruss Design), Ellen Bruss (Ellen Bruss Design), Marty Gregg (Arthouse Design), Lin Flavett (Terumo bct.) Josie Valadez Fraire (Girls Inc. of Metro Denver), Toluwanimi Obiwole (Educator + Organizer) and Estevan Ruíz (MSU Denver). The discussion included conversations about such topics like how to make hiring processes more inclusive, iconography and inclusion, and diversity in education curriculums.
The day also featured insightful presentations on gender and call-out culture followed by a workshop exposing implicit biases and AIGA’s Gender Equity Toolkit. It was very apparent in the conversations and connections that were made at the D&I retreat that our design community has a want, need and duty to continue D&I’s mission of bringing awareness and inclusivity to our work and by extension, to our communities.