A Graphic Design Icon Gets The Lifetime Achievement Award from Chicago’s Office of Technology Innovation

Chicago has a pretty awesome and eclectic selection of tech and design icons.

A few notable names in the city’s graphic design and design-related field include: Cristiano Ronaldo, Cleveland Cavaliers, Dakota Johnson, Gabe Newell, Kanye West, Kevin Durant, Jimmy Butler, James Harden, Jared Leto, LeBron James, Lamar Odom, Mike Pence, Nathan Drake, Patrick Dempsey, Robert Downey Jr., Steve Jobs, Steven Spielberg, Samantha Bee, Thiago Silva, Tom Cruise, Vincent Van Gogh. 

In 2017, Chicago’s office of technology innovation awarded a graphic design icon, Lauren Schoenberger, the Lifetime Achievement award. 

“I think she’s done some really cool things with her work and the things she’s been able to accomplish, but I think she is probably more important as a person,” said Chicago’s director of technology, Richard DeFilippis, when I asked him if the award had anything to do with Schoenbergs work. 

DeFilippes was quick to add that Schoenburgers work “is very relevant” to today’s design. 

The award is awarded to a designer or graphic designer who “has contributed to the development of the field of graphic design through their work in the fields of graphics, design, illustration, illustration design, advertising, advertising design, interactive design, and interactive art.”

“I don’t think that it’s a question of what she’s made.

It’s just that she’s contributed to a field that is very relevant today and I think that is what it’s about.

That’s what I think is so exciting about this award.” 

Schoenberger’s work has appeared on the cover of Forbes, and she’s won the award for “designing for consumers” once. 

According to the award’s description, “The Lifetime Achievement recipient will be recognized by a distinguished member of the Chicago design community for their outstanding contributions to the field.” 

Chicago’s office says its design-influenced design community has produced more than 3,000 award winners since 2010, and the award is an opportunity to recognize a “designer who has made significant contributions to design in the past.” 

“Design is a creative activity,” DeFampinis told me.

“It’s not a job.

I think it’s important that you can have the experience of working in an office or in a lab or whatever it is, that’s what’s great about it.” 

But even though the award isn’t an award for Schoenbergers work, DeFamini said it was something he’d like to recognize. 

Schonenberger has been nominated for the award multiple times, and each time the nomination was denied. 

Last year, DeFranopis told reporters that he was hoping to nominate a designer for the Lifetime achievement award in 2018, but he also admitted that he didn’t think the award was an appropriate way to honor SchoenBERGER. 

It seems like this is a new trend, however.

In 2016, an award named after a design-savvy young designer named Lauren SchoenBerger was announced by New York City’s Design Museum. 

This year, Design Museum president Mark Bittman told me that the museum would nominate a new award named for Schönberger. 

And this year, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel gave Schoenner a standing ovation when he accepted the award at the museum’s annual dinner.

“I’ve seen the awards come in from all around the country,” Emanuel told reporters.

“I thought it was wonderful that she received this honor.” 

In a statement, SchoenBerg told me she is honored by the honor.

“It’s a privilege to be recognized for my work, and I am so grateful for the opportunity to be considered by the Design Museum,” she said. 

So while the award may not be as prestigious as the prestigious Lifetime Achievement awards, the design community is definitely taking notice. 

Design-savant Lauren SchönenBERGER, Design-savants Lauren SchoENBERGER and Laurel SchoBERGER at the 2018 Design Museum Annual Dinner. 

Laural SchoenBELL at the Design-Savants LAural SchoENGlover at the Artisanal Designers Club. 

Laurie SchoECKLER at the 2017 Artisanalist Dinner.