Profile of a community catalyst: Ellen Lynch

It takes catalysts to build a community. I remember the first AIGA Raleigh meeting I attended as an incoming board member. As we all shared ideas for ways we thought we could make the chapter better, we talked about Twitter and how important it was going to be as a tool for us to engage with our design community. At the next board meeting, we talked about Twitter again. By then I knew it wasn’t going to be difficult to define the strategy–the hard part was going to be getting the right people together who were passionate about it to make the right decisions and then follow through. It would take just the right person to provide the spark to move from idea to action. The right person found us. Enter Ellen Lynch. Ellen had a lot of interest in Twitter and social media. And by the following board meeting, Ellen had moved from offering to help to ready to step up and take charge. A week later Ellen had set up a meeting with Kelty Brittle and I to discuss our Twitter strategy, including all of the decisions we needed to make and her recommendations based on her experience. It took only a few quick follow-up discussions, and then Ellen applied the changes. If you’ve seen our Twitter feed recently, you’ve seen the impact: Today we’re having more active conversations. We have a stronger voice. Now Twitter is an even more rich, immediate vehicle for us to engage with the design community in North Carolina and beyond, and for the community to engage with us. For her effort, Ellen had quickly and undoubtedly earned a position as AIGA Raleigh’s Social Media Advisor. If you want to build a strong, productive community, you need catalysts like Ellen. We’re lucky to have her in ours. At our October board meeting on Wednesday, Ellen was given our first Catalyst Award. Join us in thanking her for her work to make the AIGA design community stronger. You can follow Ellen on Twitter.

By Kelty Brittle
Published October 8, 2010