Celebrating 50 years of SEGD with President Kathy Fry

As President of the Society for Experiental Graphic Design (SEGD), Mayer/Reed principal, Kathy Fry, reflects on the organization’s 50th anniversary in her letter originally published on the SEGD website.

Dear SEGD Community,

I’m honored to serve my second and final term as SEGD President in our 50th year as an organization! I invite you to join us this year in “looking both ways” to recognize the evolution of SEGD – we’ll mark the 50th anniversary by joyously celebrating the present moment by equal parts honoring the legacy of the profession and looking forward to all that is to come. 

When I meet members, I love to ask how they found their way to a career in experience design. This often prompts a story of discovery with a few twists and turns that was driven by a curiosity and an impression left by an experience design project they encountered. I, myself, grew up taking family vacations in an RV, visiting national parks. We stopped at countless viewpoints and visitor centers, devouring every interpretive panel to gain some understanding of the beautiful place we were visiting. I fell in love with park identity signs, but my first wayfinding love was on the ski slopes when I learned that green circle, blue square, black diamond coded every trail — giving me the information I needed to navigate. What are the experiences and projects that made an early impression on you? How have they changed over the years? How might these experiences evolve in the future? 


When I started my career, I looked to SEGD to understand the breadth and history of my field, something that was not easily found in college courses at the time. SEGD helped me see a career path, gave me access to education specific to what I was doing, and I slowly built a network of friends facing the same challenges and joys. Our organization has incredible influence on the next generation of designers, and I believe we have an obligation to foster a field that strives for design excellence and socially responsible practices. I serve on the board and my firm, Mayer/Reed is committed to donating to SEGD because we believe in the value of service and giving back. I hope you connect with us during this milestone year and commit to the future of experience design. There are many ways to be involved! 

– Donate to our $50 for 50 drive!
– Join the 50th Foundation – 50 individuals or organizations committed to sustaining SEGD
– Join us for our 50th Anniversary Celebration Annual Conference in Washington D.C. in August
– Submit your projects to the 2023 SEGD Global Design Awards
– Submit a nomination for the 2023 Achievement Awards
– Connect with a SEGD Chapter to volunteer or attend an event

I am thrilled to support SEGD CEO, Cybelle Jones and SEGD staff in these endeavors.  This will be my last year as President of the Board of Directors and serving on the executive team with Traci Sym of Plus & Greater Than (Vice President), Mike McCarthy from DCL (Treasurer) and Anna Crider of Entro (Past President). In addition to returning board members, this year we welcome Darlene van Uden serving as Chapter Chair Liaison to the board, and new board members Genell Hoechstetter, Kirsten Southwell, and Masha Pyshkina.

I am looking forward to connecting with you all this year and celebrating our SEGD community’s 50th milestone in Washington D.C. August 24-26, 2023!

Posted: Jan 27, 2023
Written by: Kathy Fry
Posted January 27, 2023
Written by: Kathy Fry
Categories: PUBLISHED 

Video Inspires Support for a World Class Trekking Loop in the Columbia River Gorge

The Friends of the Columbia Gorge have big plans in the works for Oregon and Washington’s famed recreation destination. A 200-mile trail system connecting small towns, farms, wineries and wild areas will open opportunities for multi-day adventures, create contiguous areas of protected lands and support Gorge economies by connecting trails to communities. With nearly 80% of the land for the “Towns to Trails” loop secured and 40% of the trails in place, the plan for this new adventuring idea is moving closer to reality.

Mayer/Reed developed a video for Friends of the Columbia Gorge to share this vision. It quickly received recognition; inspiring KGW’s travel segment, Grant’s Getaways, and Willamette Week to feature the Towns to Trails project.

Call for Entries: “Beyond Opening Day”
A Photographic Exhibition


When does a project become a place? Once design and construction are complete, we as designers step back and watch as each space takes on a life of its own. How do you experience these places?

This is the story we will explore in a photographic exhibition revealing users’ perspectives of Mayer/Reed-designed places. Submit photographs now through July 31 via email or Instagram. Please see complete details about the call for entries here.