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Ohio Northern graphic design graduate wins an ADDY in awards competition

March—Ohio Northern University graduate Arnaldo (AJ) Jimenez, BFA/graphic design ’09) and his colleagues from Recess Creative in Cleveland, Ohio, won a silver ADDY award at this year’s American Advertising Federation/Cleveland ADDY Award Show held February 27.

The award recognized the work for the Cub Cadet Cub Connect app. Designed for use with the Cub Cadet XT Enduro Series of lawn tractors, the app alerts users about necessary maintenance, including oil changes, blade maintenance and air filter replacements. The app also tracks total running hours over the lifetime of the tractor and logs all maintenance tasks to keep machines running at peak performance.

The design agency also took home several bronze ADDY awards, including several for their work with Cleveland Hopkins International Airport.

The event honored Northeast Ohio’s most creative marketing campaigns where a total of 462 entries were submitted this year. The work included advertising, website, video, publication designs and more. About 150 winners received a bronze, silver or gold ADDY voted by a panel of three judges that also work in the ad industry. The silver and gold winners move on to compete in the District ADDYs competition (Ohio, Kentucky, and West Virginia). 

The ADDYs, now the American Advertising Awards, is the advertising industry’s largest and most representative competition, attracting over 40,000 entries every year in local AAF Club (Ad Club) competitions. The mission of the American Advertising Awards competition is to recognize and reward the creative spirit of excellence in the art of advertising.

Conducted annually by the American Advertising Federation (AAF), the local Ad Club phase is the first of a three-tier, national competition. Concurrently, all across the country, local entrants vie to win ADDY Awards—recognition as the very best in their markets. Entry in your local Ad Club competition is the first step toward winning a national ADDY.

Selection of the most creative entry in each category is affected by a scoring process in which a panel of judges evaluates all creative dimensions of every entry. A Gold ADDY is recognition of the highest level of creative excellence and is judged to be superior to all other entries in the category. Entries that are also considered outstanding and worthy of recognition receive a Silver ADDY. The number of awards given in each category is determined by the judges, based on the relative quality of work in that category.

AJ is currently an art director at Recess Creative, a full service, digital advertising and integrated marketing agency. Founded in 2009, Recess Creative adheres to an unwavering goal of providing innovative solutions and unexpected results for their clients. Based in Cleveland, Ohio, Recess Creative serves a roster of blue-chip companies nationwide in scope. Clients include KeyBank, MOVband, Iron Chef Marc Forgione, Gatorade, the Greater Cleveland Partnership and other regional and national industry leaders. The firm also has been recognized as an industry leader in digital communication and has won numerous awards that include ADDYs, Webbys, Communicator Awards, IMAs, OMMAs, Hives, AIGA Awards, AdAge, IxDA and ECHO awards.

As a designer for Recess Creative, AJ provides art direction and design for all mediums, with a strong emphasis in interactive design. AJ has worked in a wide variety of industry segments from retail, non-profit and financial services and B2B. AJ most recently lead the design of a new mobile app for a BD pitch as well as designed for KeyBank and Cuyahoga Community College. He currently is involved with the local AIGA professional chapter in Cleveland.

Prior to Recess Creative, AJ worked as a graphic designer for Insivia in Cleveland and as a free-lance designer. He also completed an internship at The Detroit Studio, also located in Cleveland.

While on campus, AJ served as president of the AIGA (The Professional Association for Design)/ONU student chapter, attended several national design conferences including Gain in New York City. He also served as vice president of the Latino Student Union and was involved with Finding U @ ONU and Vision Builders. For several years he served as a peer assistant for the Arts & Science First Year Experience program. He had work accepted to a number of student juried exhibits, had work accepted to the AIGA Cleveland design competition, and was inducted to Kappa Pi national art honorary.

The mission of the Ohio Northern graphic design program is to prepare undergraduate students to become socially and environmentally aware leaders in the field of visual communication. Focusing on development and mastery of conceptual and technical skills in graphic design, illustration, and advertising as well as studio electives, cross disciplinary courses and collaborative experiences prepare students for the convergence of the design fields and for positions as creative directors across a broad spectrum of increasingly media-based careers. Graduates from the program have gone on to work at companies such as Wunderman Design, Foothold Design, Smithsonian Institution, Milan Historical Museum, NiSource, and Bubbles Academy.

Originally designated as the School of Fine Arts and later the College of Fine Arts, the art & design program was first established as an independent academic unit at Ohio Northern in 1878, largely as an outgrowth of course work in engineering and architectural drawing. Today, Ohio Northern offers both the Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Fine Arts degrees with majors in advertising design, art education, graphic design and studio arts with concentrations in two-dimensional, three-dimensional and pre-art therapy. The department of A&D holds memberships in national organizations such as the National Art Education Association, College Art Association, Foundations in Art: Theory and Education, AIGA: The Professional Association for Design, and the National Council on Education of Ceramic Arts. The department is recognized in the “Creative Colleges: A Guide for Student Actors, Artists, Dancers, Musicians and Writers” as one of the best creative programs nationwide. For additional information about the department of art & design or the University’s 2014–15 Arts Exhibition Season, contact the department at 419.772.2160.