Jay Simon

PTW2020_JAYSIMON

SENIOR DESIGNER, RESEARCH PROJECTS
THE HERITAGE FOUNDATION, WASHINGTON DC

Never one to stay in his comfort zone, Jay followed a winding (and less-traveled) path to his calling at a non-profit think tank on Capitol Hill in Washington DC, where he’s been for over six years in various creative roles. While in college, Jay started a boutique construction firm based in Memphis TN which found a niche by painstakingly restoring and revitalizing old homes in the historic district. In search of a new challenge, Jay leveraged his experience as an entrepreneur, along with a BA in finance and economics, in New York City. He spent several years as a financial analyst, but struggled to discover an outlet that would allow him to bridge the gap between his analytical obsession and his eye for detail. After taking a few years off exploring the world with his wife, Jay returned to NYC to study Graphic Design. As career evolutions go, he recently stepped aside as Art Director in order to pursue new design opportunities in the research side of The Heritage Foundation. As the Senior Designer for Research Projects, he helps policy wonks articulate their often esoteric work to the masses by training his sights on research and data visualization in both print and digital. Jay’s success is attributable to his process-minded and forward-thinking approach, and he challenges colleagues to always be improving.

THE FUTURE OF THE GRAPHIC DESIGN BUSINESS?
Close your laptop and put the phone in your pocket. Now, go take a walk and look around … design is everywhere. Opportunities to visually communicate abound. And while digital may dominate, print is not dead. It’s fair to say that while nearly everyone notices — and most have an opinion — few truly understand the complex process of design. That’s your opportunity. There’s plenty of bad design, and now is a good time to be a great designer.

WHERE WERE YOU BORN AND WHERE DO YOU LIVE NOW?
Corpus Christi TX / raised on a farm in Alabama / Washington DC

A DESIGN HERO?
Two NYC Dans: Dan Cassaro and Dan Funderburgh

FAVORITE SOCIAL MEDIA?
Twitter … I follow and observe, but seldom tweet

FAVORITE TELEVISION BINGE WATCH?
How It’s Made on The Science Channel

FAVORITE PODCAST?
Mike Rowe: The Way I Heard It

FAVORITE BOOK?
On the Road, The Glass Castle, Great Expectations, The Old Farmers’ Almanac

FAVORITE MOVIE?
Goodfellas, Back to the Future, Ghostbusters, anything with Jimmy Stewart

FAVORITE FINE ARTIST?
Leonardo da Vinci

FAVORITE CAUSE/CHARITY?
St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital

FAVORITE FREE TIME ACTIVITY?
I’m Dad to two remarkable and energetic little boys under the age of 7 – there’s no such thing as free time.

IF YOU WERE NOT A DESIGNER?
Carpenter

< PREVHOMENEXT >