Founder & Design Director at Span
Bud Rodecker is a founder and design director at Span and an adjunct professor at DePaul University. His work explores the space between logical constraints and formal play, and balances form with meaning. He is interested in systems and processes with the potential to create design.
Rodecker was a designer and later a partner at Thirst from 2005–2019. Rodecker’s work with Thirst has been displayed in the Venice Architectural Biennale, the Chicago Cultural Center, Typeforce, published in various publications including Graphis, Concept Magazine Indonesia, IdN Magazine, Slanted, archived in The Chicago Design Archive, and earned recognition from the STA 100, Design Observer 50 Books 50 Covers, and by Graphis with a platinum award.
Outside the studio, Rodecker explores the process of creativity through self-initiated experiments and teaching design at DePaul University. He has participated in numerous design-related lectures, workshops, and panels—sharing his unique perspective on design and the creative process.
Chairman & Chief Creative Officer at Bailey Lauerman
Carter Weitz is Chairman and Chief Creative Officer at Bailey Lauerman. Under Carter’s influence the agency has transformed from a regional advertising firm to a nationally recognized destination agency known for its creative horsepower and impressive client roster.
An Iowa native and a graduate of Iowa State University with a BFA in graphic design, Carter has successfully brought powerful design and meticulously crafted visual systems to the development of highly conceptual and enduring work across a multitude of marketing applications and consumer touchpoints. He leads a talented staff of creative professionals who have developed integrated campaigns for some of America’s most iconic brands, including Disney, AMC Theatres, Pepsi, GE, Bosch, Bass Pro Shops, ConAgra Foods, Panda Express, Phillips 66, TD Ameritrade, and Union Pacific.
Bailey Lauerman, Ad Age 2013 National Small Agency of the Year, is consistently recognized in worldwide creative competitions including the Effie Awards, Communication Arts, The One Show, Graphis, the Clio Awards, and the American Advertising Awards. Carter has judged some of the industry’s most prestigious shows, including the Communication Arts Advertising Annual and National Effies.
Brand Strategist, Senior Art Director & Designer at Gardner Design
Brian Wiens is a second-generation designer who has carved his own place in the industry. Over the past 12 years, he’s been recognized for the identities he’s created, landing spots in design publications including several in the LogoLounge book series. Even amidst his success, Brian remains thankful for his roots, and he traces his love for graphic design to early days hanging out with his dad in the design studio.
Brian is especially adept at thoughtfully building out entire brand systems — orchestrating the complete visual look and carrying it forward into all types of marketing materials. He’s the artist behind game-changing identities, for everything from large, global manufacturers to small local coffee roasters and breweries.
You may not guess it from looking at him now, but Wiens was an OG man-bun wearer, back when he rocked longer tresses. He may have traded in his locks, but this Samson has lost none of his physical strength, due to his daily 5 AM weightlifting routines.
Creative Director at Fuel
Bill Bollman is FUEL’s Creative Director. Before co-founding FUEL in 2001, he worked for Horizon Communications, JW Morton and Basler Design Group. Bill studied Illustration at Hawkeye Tech in Waterloo, Iowa. An expert in the “old ways” of hands-on print production, these skills influence his work in the digital world to this day. His work throughout his career has been featured in international publications including Graphis, How International Design, Communication Arts, and The One Book as well as numerous design annuals and reference books.
Art Director at Rippke Design
Co-founder of Rippke Design, Ashley Rippke has 15 years of experience in brand development, web design, publication layout, and presentation design. As a designer and art director Ashley has worked for clients such as Texas A&M Corpus Christi, Change Healthcare, Justice and Mercy International, and the Iowa State University Research Park. Her advocacy roles outside of the design studio have also led to finding purpose in creating design solutions for non-profit and charitable organizations. Ashley is an Ames native and graduate of Iowa State University, where she earned a BFA in graphic design.
Owner of Bozz Prints
Bozz Prints is a creative powerhouse founded by John Bosley (Bozz) in Des Moines, IA back in 2015. Specializing in prints, posters, and shirts, John grew Bozz Prints from it’s humble beginnings in his basement, to a full-blown brick and mortar shop in West Des Moines’ Historic Valley Junction. Inspired by a love of travel, architecture, and the scenery that surrounds us, John is all about making timeless designs to honor the places and landmarks we all know and love.