Black Executives


IBM Black Executive Forum


Role: Worked alone as Visual Designer


I was approached by an IBM Design Executive in search of a designer to work with the IBM Black Executive team for their 2019 forum. The IBM Black Executive Engagement Forum is a Signature Experience in which the Black Executive population engages in meaningful  dialogue and co-creation while moving toward specific actions that will positively impact the health of the executive and non-executive population of the Black Constituency. Their previous forum guide felt a bit dated and doesn't work very well on a visual or interest level.

thinking in circles

It was important to the IBM Black Executive members that they communicated a strong sense of community within the organization. With that in mind, I knew I wanted to design with circles. Circles are, by definition, inclusive. A circle has no beginning and no end. It is encompassing and also welcoming. Circles are timeless, endless, and limitless.


To narrow in on the visual direction of a project, I sketched and mood boarded ideas to gather both conceptual and layout inspiration. I explored, revised, tweaked, merged and massaged my designs until they become the vision that I wanted to portray. I eventually landed on a design that represented unity and connection. I wanted to create something that felt modern and conveyed a sense of movement, more in line with the future than the past. Not wanting it to be a complete departure, the colors, layout and design I created was inspired by the IBM Digital Design Language. 


My final deliverables were featured at the 2019 IBM Black Engagement Forum. It was received with positive reviews and will be the look and feel for future IBM Black Engagement materials.

“Alisha, your work will live on forever as the work of this executive team and the Black Executives of the future continue to drive the constituency forward.  - IBM Executive