For me, a large part of the draw of design (no pun intended) has always been the people behind the work—the design community. Designers are such a unique, creative, passionate, opinionated, emboldened, ridiculous, hard-working, egomaniacal, humble bunch that you can’t help but admire them. 

My work as Director of Marketing at Fort Wayne-based architecture and engineering firm Design Collaborative (DC) allowed me to form great relationships with the designers in my office, but I always felt a lack of connection to the local design community outside of DC. Being part of an in-house business development and marketing team definitely has its advantages, but interacting with designers and creatives from other great, in-town agencies has not been (at least in my experience) one of them. Enter: AdFed!

I haven’t been involved with AdFed for many years like some of our other fantastic board members, but my short tenure has already put me into contact with a larger group of local design and creative talent than my previous seven years at DC. To be honest, I felt a little nervous going into AdFed because I didn’t have what I felt was a “typical” agency background, but I’ve been more than pleasantly surprised by the warm reception and good humor with which I’ve been received. Today I feel connected to the hard-beating heart of design talent in Fort Wayne, and all it took was an email to AdFed to see how I could get more involved.

So, if you’re like me and you want to become a more connected part of the amazing creative community in Fort Wayne, give us a shout. You can be as involved as you’d like, and we’ll all be better for your contribution—big or small. I can promise you won’t be disappointed by the people you find and we can’t wait to meet you. See you soon!


Jason Villarreal