Annabel Mangold


Annabel Mangold (she/her) is an award-winning designer and strategist who partners with mission-driven clients and causes. She’s the Owner of Mangold Design, a boutique design studio located in Napa, California.

Typically brought on early in the conception phase, Annabel contributes by formulating brand identity with stakeholder input, crafting creative messaging campaigns and producing digital solutions. She helps clients define their vision, articulate their values, and connect with their audiences in meaningful and successful ways.

Annabel’s clients include a variety of organizations such as Building Healthy Online Communities, Springboard HealthLab, National Coalitions of STD Directors, Palo Alto Junior Museum & Zoo and Valley Health Foundation.

Annabel is also a proud design graduate of the Portfolio Center in Atlanta.

Tell us how and why you became involved in socially responsible communications, any thoughts on why design can be an especially effective tool for this goal, and, if you wish, give us an example of a project of which you are proud.

In 2012, I founded a company that used appcentered interactive modules, breathing techniques and visualizations to improve mental health. At the time, the idea of using smartphones to center and focus was not commonplace.

I quickly learned that designing for controversial issues or for groups that experience stigma, requires a very different approach. I became obsessed with learning more effective ways to communicate while championing causes and people whose insights and innovations are often overlooked.

One project I am most proud of is TakeMeHome, a free HIV self-testing program. I was one of the first people brought on to conceive how TakeMeHome would function from user experience to real-world logistical requirements.

With limited resources, the TakeMeHome platform provides jurisdictions a way to offer free HIV and STI tests to their constituents, while providing a private and secure testing results portal. The program was such a success, the model has since gone national, expanding access to HIV self-testing throughout the U.S., including Puerto Rico, for everyone ages 17 and older.

Given the confluence of events and challenges our society now faces, does this moment in time present any special opportunities, urgencies, obstacles to designing for good?

Global devastations are leading more people to prioritize cause over profit, and it’s exciting to see corporations reexamine their systems to include more diversity, equity, and inclusion.

All designers have the ability to alter and shape perceptions. Whether that influence is used to amplify or to harm, is nothing to take lightly. We must think of how our work will live in the world while painstakingly and repeatedly question and audit our choices.