Hello…
I'm Michael — a full-time father of six (ages 9, 7, 5, 3 and newborn twins……😓🤪)!
(On the side...) I am an award-winning experience designer, rooted in equity, diversity, inclusion, and belonging, with more than 10 years of experience across brand, product, visual, and physical design as well as film. I am about passionate about crafting experiences that serve the most vulnerable, marginalized and historically excluded populations. 
As a creative lead I've worked with some pretty cool partners like the National Institutes of Health, The White House, AOL, the West Hollywood Sunset Strip, the University of Southern California, and the University of Pennsylvania. Today, I'm building equity-centered design strategy with Capital One. 
My Design Philosophy
My overall philosophical approach to experience design is guided by a radical commitment to an essential ethic––good love, healthy choices, and second chances. 
By good love I mean that my engagement in creative problem solving is based on both a human-centered and equity-centered approach by placing humility, historical contexts, situating knowledge, addressing power dynamics, centering those marginalized by design, and co-creating with and (when feasible) within the community for whom we design; and to prioritize all of this ahead of proposing solutions. 
Healthy choices builds upon good love in that I am intentional about examining, designing, and redesigning systems in relationship with the socio-economic health and psychological safety of those likely to experience our designs, particularly in relation to the broader external environment. For example, I will routinely ask peers and leadership if we are making equity-centered decisions that fairly distribute benefit and harm proportionately; if our design approach asks the consumer to make a choice between our interests and their livelihood; if we are considering the complete human beyond concept development, well into post-launch and scaling phases where it matters most. Based on this, I will push on those situated in power to engage in collective healing practices during critical sociopolitical moments. In doing so, we are more capable of moving forward in lockstep internally as associates and externally with our consumer community. 
Finally, second chances present an opportunity for both designers and consumers of design to make mistakes — in relatively low-stakes environments — and to embrace feedback that improves our design or consumers’ ability to achieve their intended goals through our designed experiences.
These essential pillars of my philosophy — in conjunction with certain refinements to other technical dimensions of design (i.e., design thinking, service design, design research methodologies, human-centered design, etc.) — engenders an environment of self-accountability, institutional self-awareness, and responsibility for customer needs and success without sacrificing on market relevance and business growth, nor sacrificing the social and emotional equipment that makes us all full human beings.
Lightning Round
Hobbies:
• Playing with my kids
• Watching movies with an unnecessarily high degree of intense analysis.
• Learning new languages (currently learning classical Arabic and American Sign Language)
Current/Recent Readings
Design Justice by Sasha Costanza-Chock
Do Better: Spiritual Activism for Fighting and Healing from White Supremacy by Rachel Ricketts
Superhuman by Design by Donald Burlock
• Measure What Matters
by John Doerr
Design challenge I'm most interested in tackling:
How might we transform design conventions (values, frameworks, processes, ways of knowing) to avoid reproducing systems of oppression through intersectionality and equity-centered approaches?
Current design skill I'm learning...
• Principles of Design Justice and Equity-Centered Design
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