I am an award-winning Bay Area graphic designer specializing in:
> brand and identity
> graphic design
> web and mobile UI and development
> print production management and automation 
I am seeking a role as Senior Graphic Designer with technology, professional services and climate-focused companies.
Over the last two decades, Fenwick & West — one of the largest and fastest growing law firms in the U.S. — trusted me to create their identity system, websites, internal and client-facing marketing communications, publications, print and online advertising, and business development materials. I handled all graphic design needs: everything from their business cards to the sign on the front of the building. In 2016, I completed my third extensive reworking of the Fenwick & West identity, including color palette, logotype, and typography, as well as an online design guide. I was also responsible for implementing the new style across all systems and tangible items.
Developed self-service design products at Fenwick, including: templates systems in InDesign that enable non-designers to create beautiful pitch and proposal materials; an online style guide built on Frontify that allows anyone to find out more about design or download a color palette, template or logo for their projects; and pioneered implementation of Stampready, an online tool that enables non-technical users to easily create email invitations and newsletters.
All of this work significantly improved the reach and efficiency of the graphics function, achieving six-figure savings for the firm while simultaneously improving brand and design consistency. 
I was the lead designer for multiple online and mobile projects, including: continuous redesign and improvement of the firm’s primary website (www.fenwick.com); designed the firm’s first fully responsive mobile website, developed entirely with internal resources; and, designed and developed multiple blogs and microsites, such as the the Startup Resource Center (www.fenwick.com/startup), a subsite that features materials for the Startup and venture capital communities.
Past clients of mine include PC World, Macworld, MacWeek and PC Magazine, Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman, Patent Law Works, CaP3i, Myers Nave, Legal Resource Network, as well as a variety of startups.

A really sweet 20th anniversary video, staring in order of appearance: Rob Kahn (Fenwick's CMO), Amy La Russa (co-worker), Melita Jampol (Fenwick's Communications Director), and Ken Arendt (co-worker). 


Queer Nation — The Personal is The Political
In June 1990 my partner, a friend and I started an iconic gay rights organization called Queer Nation. I initially advertised the group's launch with stickers that I typeset at work, putting them on sidewalks at busy corners in the Castro district in San Francisco. We rented a room at the women's building for our first meeting and expected maybe 20 people to show up. Over 300 people showed up at the first meeting! 
Over the next 18 months, and with thousands of queers, we did over 150 actions on a wide range of subjects. Notable protests addressed issues such as queer representation in film and media, marriage equality, and inclusion. We disrupted the Academy Awards for 1991 and captured front-page headlines around the world for our protest around the representation of LGBT people in film and television as either villains or victims. With the focus group Queer Planet, I developed an elaborate postcard mail-in project and a series of protests directed at Amnesty International for their refusal to include queers as prisoners of conscience. Our demands were met in their Yokahama International Meeting in 1991. Earlier, in 1990, The Marriage Project group protested at City Hall demanding marriage certificates. Once refused, a pastor married 10 couples in the rotunda of City Hall, a full 15 years ahead of Mayor Gavin Newsom's decision to allow queers to marry in San Francisco. Our protests were usually humorous, got our points across and always garnered headlines and TV coverage. ​​​​​​​
Queer Nation Helper
One of the ways we spread the message in a pre-internet era was to publish our meeting times in the local newspapers. From these meeting listings, we got lots of out-of-town inquiries from people who wanted to do the same in their communities. So we packaged our sticker master sheets and ideas for protests in a box that looked like the Hamburger Helper box called Queer Nation Helper. 
Over the years, my design style for the group was skinned by other designers like Paula Scher for her 1996 work for The Public Theater in New York, by an unknown designer for the rap group Run DMC, H&R Block's logo, and titles for the TV program Northern Exposure. The style is still in use today 30 years later by activist groups everywhere.

Queer Nation's first Kiss-in. Powell & Market.   ©Rick Gerharter, August 1990

Stickers waiting to be cut.


Currently
Climate change is the most pressing problem that we face today. I would like to use my talents to help. I'm looking for companies, foundations, and non-profits that are actively engaged in the effort to save our beautiful world and would benefit from my unique blend of vision and enthusiasm. In the meantime, I will continue to plant trees and help the creeks thrive in the Trinity Alps.
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Education
I studied biochemistry, genetics, and philosophy of science at the Lyman Briggs College at Michigan State University. I also played woodwinds and had an active interest in photography and painting so, with extra time on my hands during the national moratorium on recombinant DNA studies in the mid-70s, I rediscovered my talents in the arts and started working with glass and fiber. When I moved to San Francisco, I went to work for PC World magazine. Jim Felici (Editor at Macworld, Publish! and Seybold Reports, author of The Complete Typographer) was my supervisor, mentor and, teacher. I spent ten years working first as a typesetter learning the exacting process of setting type, then managing the typesetting department and eventually becoming the editorial production manager. I began my design training working closely with PC World's award-winning art department through four magazine redesigns and helped move both magazines from traditional production methods to an all-digital process. 
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