THE CREATIVE IMPACT SERIES: Social Entrepreneurship – Positive Change Through Design

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Date(s) - 12/01/2015
6:00 pm - 8:00 pm




Join us to kick off our new #designforgood series! We’re bringing four Connecticut-based social enterprise leaders to Hartford to talk about how they are creating positive change through their work in the fashion, design, and food industries. This special evening features insights into how our panelists leverage design and creativity to build brands for social impact. What a great way to celebrate #givingtuesday, and talk with fellow creatives about entrepreneurship, social enterprise, sustainability, and all things #designforgood! Panel Discussion and Q&A, followed by social hour with complimentary appetizers, drinks, and raffle prizes! You don’t want to miss this!

Tuesday, December 1st, 6:00-8:00 
6:00-7:00 Panel Discussion
7:00-8:00 Social with free appetizers, drinks and raffle prizes! 

SAVE with Earlybird rates through November 22:
AIGA Member: $35
Non-member: $25
Student: $10

Admission after November 22:
AIGA Member: $40
Non-member: $30
Student: $15

15% of your ticket cost benefits the AIGA-CT Scholarship Fund.

* Remember that you can apply for an enrichment grant to cover the cost of your ticket and travel * 


Constanza Gowen-Segovia, Graphic Designer at co:lab

As a creative professional at co:lab and visiting lecturer at Trinity College, Constanza is committed to helping people understand what design can do to improve the world around them. Serving on the AIGA Connecticut Board from 2009-2103, Constanza worked to engage young professionals and students in community-oriented projects.

At co:lab, she works with social-value clients to craft visual experiences that help them connect with what’s most meaningful to their audiences while staying true to their mission. At Trinity College in the Studio Arts Program, she teaches a course about book design and its value as a vehicle for ideas.

Raised in Mendoza, Argentina, Constanza is a University of Hartford Art School graduate and a passionate advocate for human rights, social action, economic empowerment and the alleviation of poverty. She is a founding member of Design Global Change and Design is Love.

Constanza is actively involved in the Hartford arts scene, her neighborhood of Frog Hollow, live doodling, pretty much anything, listening to the radio, walking everywhere, reading graphic novels and (oh that’s right,) being in a marching band. She currently lives in Hartford with her tall boyfriend, his two small kids (sometimes), and their bunny Violeta (all the time).

Suzanne McKenzie, Creative Director and Founder of Able Made

Able Made is an active lifestyle brand that promotes healthy living with their responsibly-produced accessories line. Able Made’s collaborators include Project Runway’s Anya Ayoung Chee, Vogue Fashion Fund Winners Public School, Threadless and more — resulting in exclusive products that have funded projects for VH1 Save the Music Foundation, Pencils of Promise, Sloan Kettering Cancer Institute, and other top-non profit organizations. Suzanne was selected to attend President Obama’s Global Emerging Entrepreneurs event at the White House in May 2015 and is an Ideas that Matter Grant recipient. Suzanne also teaches Design and Social Entrepreneurship at the School of Visual Arts, and runs the Ucal McKenzie Breakaway Foundation which gives city youth access top soccer and health education.

Onyeka Obiocha, President of A Happy Life

A Happy Life is a social enterprise dedicated to creating a happier world for all. In February of 2014, A Happy Life launched Happy Life Coffee, a coffee roasting company dedicating to breaking the cycles of poverty by investing 100% of net profits into coffee farming communities. In March of this year, A Happy Life launched The Happiness Lab, a community space located in New Haven, CT dedicated to creating a happier community. The Happiness Lab features a coffee shop, meeting room, and community space that hosts meditation, yoga, and community conversations in conjunction with the Yale Humanists. The Happiness Lab was recently recognized by the National Retail Federation as one of the most innovative retail spaces in the country. An avid traveler and bicycle enthusiast, Onyeka holds a degree in Economics from the University of Connecticut.


Heather Burns, CEO, Connecticut Sustainable Business Council

Heather Burns is President of the Connecticut Sustainable Business Council, the state’s largest network of businesses committed to policies and practices that advance leadership in social, economic and environmental performance.  
In 2010, Heather was recognized by Buckminster Fuller Challenge for HaitiOnward, a social impact organization “demonstrating a clear grasp of holistic and sustainable solutions to the the system failures facing Haiti.”  Locally, she has been recognized by Morris Media Green Awards for positive contributions to the community, and Moffly’s Best of the Gold Coast Awards. 

In 2007 Heather founded Connecticut’s first sustainability related blog, Live events around the state brought a wide range of stakeholders together to share ideas and brainstorm solutions and garnered media attention from The New York Times, CPTV, Green Is Good Radio and others.


Jennifer Roach is the Civic Engagement Fellow in Allbritton for the academic year 2015-2016. She is a recent Wesleyan alumni, class of 2014. Since graduating, she has moved to Hartford to continue developing Summer of Solutions Hartford, an urban farming internship program she worked on during her time at Wesleyan.