My name is John.

I'm a digital product designer passionate about
crafting social change.

Watch my three-minute video from 2014.

My Story


uring an incredible chapter at Clearleft, a top UX agency in the UK, I worked in a multi-disciplinary team to solve complex business problems using human-centered design. I dove deeper into the craft of digital design and discovered the key elements of a successful project. I honed my tools as a designer and realized the potential to apply what I learned towards a pressing humanitarian crisis.

Helping Refugees Prosper

While at Clearleft, I worked nights and weekends to start an initiative called Prosper—a diverse community of digital professionals working together to help refugees prosper in Europe. With a distributed team of volunteers, we built a central database of refugee crisis initiatives and began moving towards a more sustainable long-term model.

Leading Product Design & Crafting Social Change

Having found my niche at the intersection of digital design and social change, I've been thriving in a remote role as Lead Product Designer for Peak Democracy—a successful Bay Area company that has empowered governments to engage with their citizens with online tools over the past ten years.

It's been a challenging and rewarding experience so far, and I'm enjoying taking on a leadership role within a progressive, distributed organization. We're testing the new version of our tool and I'm super excited to share it with the world. We're working to shape outcomes for public good—one pixel at a time...

Feel free to check out my portfolio below to get a sense of how I work. If there's anything you'd like to discuss, you can send me an email or find me on Twitter.


Investing all that I am into all that I do

prosper portfolio image

Prosper App

Digital Product Design

As the founder of Prosper Community, I led a distributed team of over 100 volunteers to design and build an open source product that helps relief organizations make sense of "who is doing what—where" amidst the refugee crisis.

View Case Study
prosper portfolio image

Prosper Community

Startup Founder

As a response to the crisis in Europe, I founded a community of digital workers around the belief that "When refugees prosper, we all prosper". In four months the team grew from one person to ninety, and we successfuly launched an open source product to help refugees, volunteers and donors find projects that meet their needs.

View Case Study
working with the team at Clearleft on a three-month workplacement


UX Research, Strategy & Design

I worked with a team of user experience designers at Clearleft to research and define new business concepts within the landscape of design training and education. I designed and facilitated human-centered workshops to shape the narrative of our process. I pitched the new business concepts to Clearleft executives and celebreated as several of the concepts were taken on by the organization.

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screenshot of thengine's homepage on samsung galaxy


UX Research, Strategy & Design

I led research and design for a startup out of the Founders Institute based in Denver, Colorado. From user interviews to prototyping and usability testing, I helped shape the vision and execution of a seed-funded startup that created tools for local musicians and their fans.

View Case Study
screenshot of sprky chess app on an imac


Product Design & Development

For the capstone of The Firehose Project, we crafted an open source chess app using Ruby on Rails. With Test-Driven Development (TDD) as our guide, we built every element of the application—from the back-end Ruby to the front-end Javascript. The project was featured in an article on the Huffington Post.

View Case Study

Clients & Collaborators

Hear what others have to say

“As lead product designer, John is leading our company through a major product redesign. His intense focus on the needs of our customers is paralleled by his deep desire to understand our business and meet its goals.

“ John thinks strategically and produces results quickly. After a few short months, he has already redesigned key components of our product which have been reviewed and applauded by multiple clients as beautiful enhancements to our legacy system.

“As a result of his insightful strategic work, John has also become a key asset to our senior management team. John is great.”

“John led our product team through discovery and research into prototyping and through several iterations. I was very impressed by John's capacity as a designer, as a team leader, and as a writer. John will go out of his way to make sure clients are happy with the final product.”

“Creative, professional, insightful and meticulous. Our team depended on John's UX expertise to create a clean, compelling face for our product. But behind the scenes, it was his relentless drive to understand, refactor, simplify and clarify our code that made working with John such a fantastic learning experience for me.”

Michael Catlin
Principal, Genius Media

“John understood our vision and crafted it into reality. He was the guy who took charge and made it happen. From business strategy to user needs, he was a rockstar.”

Want to Work Together?

Contact Me