Honoring Design Leaders and Writers for Their Unique and Outstanding Contributions to the Design Profession

By AIGA

February 22, 2022

Media Contact

Amy Gwiazdowski

(212) 710-3111 amy_gwiazdowski@aiga.org
Nominations for the AIGA Awards are Now Being Accepted

New York, NY—AIGA, the professional association for design, has celebrated design excellence through awards and competitions since its founding. The AIGA Awards program honors design leaders, forward-thinking corporations, and prolific writers for their unique and outstanding contributions to the profession. 

Nominations are accepted year round. With the intention of soliciting nominations from the community that are inclusive of the profession today, we invite AIGA members to submit nominations to honor leaders in the design profession who are doing excellent work now. 

In 2021, AIGA Medal recipients included Cheryl D. Miller for “expanding access”, Terry Irwin for “expanding envelope”, Thomas Miller for “expanding recognition”, and Archie Boston, Jr. for “expanding voice”. Additionally, the Steven Heller Prize for Cultural Commentary was awarded to Johanna Drucker and Alissa Walker. 

Through the decades, past recipients of the AIGA Medal include legendary designers: Frederic W. Goudy (1927), Alfred A. Knopf (1950), Ben Shahn (1958), May Massee (1959), Paul Rand (1966), Milton Glaser (1972), Saul Bass (1981), Bea Feitler (1989), Tomoko Miho (1993), April Greiman (1998), Michael Bierut (2006), Georg Olden (2007), Gail Anderson (2008), John Maeda (2010), Lucille Tenazas (2013), Sylvia Harris (2014), Emory Douglas (2015), Corita Kent (2016), Susan Kare (2018), and many more. 

Among others, companies recognized include: Warby Parker (2021), Google (2018), Method (2010), Patagonia (2009), Harley Davidson (2008), Target (2006), Hallmark Cards Inc. (2005), Champion International Corporation (1998), Sesame Street, Children’s Television Workshop (1992), The National Park Service (1990), Walker Arts Center (1987), Container Corporation of America (1982), IBM Corporation (1980).

AIGA Steven Heller Prize for Cultural Commentary recipients include: Alexandria Lange (2019), Ellen McGirt (2019), Allison Arieff (2018), Maurice Cherry (2018), and Anne Quito (2017).

AIGA Medal
The medal of AIGA—the most distinguished honor in the profession of communication design—has been awarded since 1920 to individuals in recognition of their exceptional achievements to the advancement of the field of design as a respected craft, strategic advantage, and vital cultural force. Medals have been awarded to individuals who have set standards of excellence over a lifetime of work or have made individual contributions to innovation within the practice of design. Learn more about the AIGA Medal criteria and view past recipients.

AIGA Corporate Leadership Award
Established in 1980, the AIGA Corporate Leadership Award recognizes the role of perceptive and forward-thinking organizations that have been instrumental in the advancement of design by applying the highest standards as a matter of practice and policy. Learn more about the AIGA Corporate Leadership Award criteria and view past recipients.

Steven Heller Prize for Cultural Commentary
Established in 2017, the annual Steven Heller Prize for Cultural Commentary spotlights individuals who best exemplify the tradition of prolific writing and boundless curiosity established by Steven Heller—who has contributed and inspired engaging commentary about design and culture for the past three decades. This Prize celebrates critical thinking about design and the profession, and encourages development in the next generation of design voices through a variety of media (e.g., curators, podcasters, filmmakers). Learn more about the Steven Heller Prize for Cultural Commentary criteria and view past recipients.

Media Contact

Amy Gwiazdowski

(212) 710-3111 amy_gwiazdowski@aiga.org

AIGA

AIGA, the professional association for design, advances design as a professional craft, strategic advantage, and vital cultural force. As the largest community of design advocates, AIGA brings together practitioners, enthusiasts, and patrons to amplify the voice of design and creates the vision for a collective future. AIGA defines global standards and ethical practices, guides design education, inspires designers and the public, enhances professional development, and makes powerful tools and resources accessible to all.