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The role of chapters and individual members is to
demonstrate a passion for design and the design profession through activities
that engage both the local community and, hopefully, an even larger audience.
AIGA has committed to a broad campaign to provide a suite of
tools that allows a volunteer membership organization to work effectively and
responsively, nationally and at the chapter level. The goal is for each chapter
to benefit from a common, robust infrastructure, so that fundamental ways of
supporting members are not dependent on the ebb and flow of volunteer interest
in the systems that make a membership organization work.
Our basic premise is that the creative diversity of the
design community should appear in the form of programming and content. As AIGA
continues to strengthen chapters, we also recognize that amplifying what
members and chapters are doing around the world often demonstrates more
diversity and inclusion than does a focus on activities originated at the national
Based on input and consultation from chapter leaders over
the past two years, AIGA has invested in refinements to the online membership
system, including a common event registration system that links to membership
records, a new email marketing platform and a standard “iKit” for chapter
The reasons are numerous, yet simple:
Some members have asked, “Why would we have a local chapter
website that was designed somewhere else?” Or, “Why can’t we do something
really cool?” The basic platform or functionality has to be built somewhere;
the opportunity now exists for improving upon it and sharing advancements,
while assuring that every member benefits from services and content from all
members. The content—created by members—will always be local.
The One AIGA campaign aims to ensure that AIGA is seen in
all of its breadth and depth; that the experience reflects contributions from
any member or chapter who has content to share; that a member’s experience not
feel like it is limited to his or her chapter; that AIGA feels like an
expression of the entire design profession, wherever it may be located; and
that AIGA serves as a model of a community of designers who have created an
organization that inspires designers and communicates the value of design to
Richard Grefé is the executive director of AIGA, the professional association for design. While guiding all of AIGA’s activities, his most significant contributions are in strategy, formulating new initiatives to enhance the competitive success of designers
and advocating the value of design to business, government and the public.
Earlier this year, several board committees were formed to ensure that AIGA is launching its second century as a “sound, accountable, focused and relevant organization.” Read the update from two committees that examined the way AIGA is governed and organized, and whether financial practices are adequate for oversight and accountability.
In 2014 AIGA turns 100. AIGA is celebrating this moment by looking forward toward inspiration, relevance, leadership and opportunity for every designer in the decades ahead.
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