We've got some amazing new faculty joining Products of Design in the fall! Meet them below, and see them "in the quad"!
Rafael Smith focuses on product and systems design for winning ideas from IDEO.org’s Amplify program, a five-year program funded by the UK Department for International Development to make international aid more collaborative and human-centered. A designer and social entrepreneur with experience tackling challenges from emergency shelters in disaster zones to agricultural systems in rural India and Africa, his work ranges from physical products to software applications or systems. Prior to joining IDEO.org, Rafa was lead designer at Solar Mosaic, an online investment platform for clean energy, helping the company enter the market and grow from zero to ten thousand users. As an industrial design consultant, he has created products for manufacturers like Bosch, SunBeam, and Pyrex and founded Uber Shelter, a company designing emergency shelters for disaster relief in Haiti, Venezuela, and Japan. In his spare time, Rafa is a mentor for the Unreasonable Institute, advising entrepreneurs on how to apply rapid prototyping and design thinking to their businesses. But the key to Rafa’s heart is through an invitation to yoga, burritos, or conversations about evolution. Rafa received his bachelor’s in Industrial Design from Purdue University.
Jennifer Rittner founded the communications strategy firm Content Matters in 2009 to help creative businesses thrive by defining their voice and learning how to communicate effectively with diverse audiences—clients, collaborators, advocates and the general public. As a lifelong educator, her goal has always been to enable meaningful relationships between people whose lives intersect around ideas, common goals, collective experience and a shared vision, most particularly, around ideas about social justice and community. She began her career as a museum educator, principally with the American Federation of Arts where she led Art Access II, an initiative funded by Lila-Wallace Readers Digest Fund to increase museum attendance among under-served communities through education and outreach. Jennifer has taught design management at Parsons the New School for Design and FIT. She is also a part time educator at the Montclair Art Museum, Montclair Historical Society and Van Vleck House & Gardens. Jennifer received her B.A. in Art Administration and Education at Gallatin School, New York University, and her M.Ed. in Communication and Education at Teachers College, Columbia University. You can find her on Twitter @jenrittner
Elizabeth Galbut is the Founding Partner of two start-up venture capital firms, SoGal Ventures and A-Level Capital, which are collectively advisors and investors in 22 startups this year. Elizabeth’s favorite investment area is the intersection of smart design and machine learning/AI fueling major health tech innovation. Standouts in the portfolio include digital pathology standout Proscia, mobile health platform eMocha, smart air detector Birdi, lab research platform Nebulab, global health platform MORE Health, smart water bottle HidrateSpark, and mental health app Docz. Prior to venture capital, as a Strategy and Operations Consultant at Deloitte Consulting, Elizabeth focused her attention on developing long-term strategy for a variety of large healthcare clients. She contributed to business development efforts leading to over $200M of new work. Elizabeth is a proud alumnus of Georgetown University, London School of Economics, Johns Hopkins University, and Maryland Institute College of Art. See Elizabeth's personal website at www.healthdesigned.com, and follow her on Twitter @design4innov8.
Lauren Mackler is a French/American curator and graphic designer based in Los Angeles. She is the director of Public Fiction, a forum to stage exhibitions and performances by contemporary artists founded in 2010. Mackler has organized exhibitions at The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles and The Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, amongst other national and international venues. In 2015, she was awarded the Rome Prize in Design by The American Academy in Rome.