Joshua Vaughan


Joshua Vaughan is a graphic designer/creative at Blue Barn Design Co., with 16 years of design experience in city/local government, higher education/academics, agencies, volunteer, and freelance.

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.

No person is an island, and if we want our communities to thrive and continue to grow, it is up to us to take the opportunity to engage and do what we can. I have had the good fortune and opportunity in my career to work with and learn from Dawn & Brian Crawford of BC/DC Ideas, a non-profit communications agency based out of Cary, NC; with the late Tom Douglass through the East Carolina University English Dept. to help Veterans tell their stories with the Veterans Writing Workshop, to fundraising to aid in recovery efforts for Ocracoke Island when Hurricane Dorian devastated the island and it’s community, and most recently donating my services and time with the JOY Community Center & Soup Kitchen as a volunteer and volunteer designer.

Design can be especially effective in socially responsible communications by providing a larger platform or greater attention for a group/program/organization’s message, potentially giving them a refresh to better represent their mission and goals. Design can be used to streamline and educate. Design can bridge the gaps in communication, in understanding, and bring us closer together.

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?

The opportunity is there to roll your sleeves up and do the work. The work may be providing creative services for an organization or cause that needs that extra boost or literally ladling soup to help care for those in need. Or maybe use the last line in a paragraph to drop the donation information for your local community center/soup kitchen in an attempt to hopefully do a little good and help feed a few more people,