Past winners

Thank you to all those who have participated over the years with an aim to make a difference.

Since 1999, over 500 programs have been funded, for a total of over $14 million worldwide in support of causes that change our lives, our communities, and ultimately, our planet. View the full 2022 press release: Sappi North America Awards 2022 Ideas That Matter Grants or watch videos of some of our past grant winners.

2021 Back to top

2021 Judges
Libby Cole

Principal The Work Department

Detroit, MI

Dian Holton

Senior Deputy Art Director AARP

Washington, DC

Bryony Gomez-Palacio

Co-Founder UnderConsideration

Bloomington, IN

Gage Mitchell

Principal and Creative Director Modern Species

Seattle, WA

Andrew Gibbs

Founder, EIC, and CEO The Dieline

Pasadena, CA

2019 Back to top

2018 Back to top

2018 Judges
Terry Marks

Principal tmarks

Seattle, WA

Maurice Woods

Senior Experience Designer Microsoft

San Pablo, CA

Justin Ahrens

Principal and Creative Director Rule29

Geneva, IL

Julia Zeltser

Founding Partner and Creative Director Hyperakt

Brooklyn, NY

Jacinda Walker

Founder and Creative Director designExplorr

San Pablo, CA

2017 Back to top

2017 Judges
Julie Anixter

Enterprise Design Principal Maga Design, Inc.

New York, NY

De Nichols

Social Impact Design Principal Civic Creatives

St. Louis, MO

Matthew Manos

Founder and Managing Director a verynice design studio

Los Angeles, CA

Randy J. Hunt

Head of Design Grab


Dana Arnett

Founding Partner and Vice Chairman VSA Partners

Chicago, IL

2016 Back to top

2016 Judges
Vicky Jones

Board of Directors Kleen-Tex Industries, Inc.

Atlanta, GA

Sarah Brooks

Director Digital Journeys

Brooklyn, NY

Christopher Simmons

Principal/Creative Director MINE™

San Francisco, CA

Andrew Shea

Principal MANY

New York, NY

2015 Back to top

2015 Judges
Naomi Usher

Founder/Creative Director Studio Usher

New York, NY

Nancy Essex

Director, Creative Design JAMA Network

Chicago, IL

Joan Barlow

Creative Services Officer Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

Bordentown, NJ

Ellen Lupton

Graduate Director Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA)

Baltimore, MD

Debbie Millman

Creator and Host Design Matters

New York, NY

2014 Back to top

2014 Judges
Cheryl Heller

Chair MFA Design for Social Innovation, SVA

New York, NY

Mark Randall

Principal and Creative Director Worldstudio

New York, NY

Lana Rigsby

Founder & CEO Rigsby Hull

Houston, TX

Christine Gaspar

Executive Director The Center for Urban Pedagogy (CUP)

Brooklyn, NY

Chris Rubino

Creative Director, Advertising, Designer Chris Rubino Studio

New York, NY

2013 Back to top

2013 Judges
Michael Lejeune

Creative Director Metro (Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority)

Los Angeles, CA

Jennifer Kinon

Founding Partner Original Champions of Design

New York, NY

Erin Huizenga

Principal and Design Director Borough + Block

Chicago, IL

Bill Drenttel


Hamden, CT

Alissa Walker

Design Writer

Los Angeles, CA

2012 Back to top

2012 Judges
Tracy West

Creative Director 50,000feet

Chicago, IL

Sam Shelton

Principal, Creative Director and Founding Partner Kinetik

Washington, D.C.

Rich Hollant

Principal, Founder, Strategist and Design Director CO:LAB

Hartford, CT

Mike Weikert

Founder & Director of Social Design (MA) and Center for Design Practice MICA Center for Social Design

Baltimore, MD

Mariana Amatullo

Cofounder and Leader Designmatters at Art Center College of Design

New York, NY

2011 Back to top

2011 Judges
Petrula Vrontikis

Owner and Creative Director Vrontikis Design Office (

Los Angeles, CA

Oliver Munday

Oliver Munday Design

New York, NY

Kit Hinrichs

Founder and Creative Director Studio Hinrichs

San Francisco, CA

Dawn Hancock

Founder & Managing Director Firebelly Design

Chicago, IL

Allan Chochinov

Partner Core77 Inc.

New York, NY

2010 Back to top

2010 Judges
Armin Vit

Co-founder UnderConsideration

Bloomington, IN

Matt Rollins

Executive Creative Director Adrenaline Agency

Atlanta, GA

Doug Powell

Vice President of Design IBM

Austin, TX

Jessica Helfand

Creative Director The Design Observer Group

Hamden, CT

Casey Caplowe

Chief Creative Officer/Co-founder GOOD

Los Angeles, CA

2009 Back to top

2009 Judges
Scott Santoro

Principal Worksight

New York, NY

Tim Bruce

Founding Partner and Creative Director Lowercase, Inc.

Chicago, IL

Gaby Brink

Founder/Chief Designer Tomorrow Partners

Berkeley, CA

Bill Grant

President and Creative Director Grant Design Collaborative

Canton, GA

Ann Willoughby

Principal Emeritus Willoughby Design

Kansas City, MO

2008 Back to top

2008 Judges
Phil Hamlett

Director, School of Graphic Design Academy of Art University

San Francisco, CA

Scott Stowell

Creative Director/Proprietor Open

New York, NY

Marcia Lausen

Director, School of Design Studio Lab and UIC School of Art and Design

Chicago, IL

Cedomir Kostovic

Professor Missouri State University Department of Art & Design

Springfield, MO

John Bielenberg

Co-founder Pando Institute

Bozeman, MT

2007 Back to top

2007 Judges
Arvi Raquel-Santos

Product Design Lead Glassdoor

San Rafael, CA

Lita Talarico

Co-founder and Co-chair SVA MFA Design School of Visual Arts

New York, NY

Hans Neubert

Principal/Global Creative Director Gensler

New York, NY

Adam Larson

Founder/Creative Director Adam&Co.

Boston, MA

Steven Heller

Co-chair, MFA Design Department School of Visual Arts

New York, NY

Laura Des Enfants

Partner and Co-founder D'NA Company

Austin, TX

2006 Back to top

2006 Judges
Arvi Raquel-Santos

Product Design Lead Glassdoor

San Rafael, CA

Laura Des Enfants

Partner and Co-founder D'NA Company

Austin, TX

Keith Helmetag

Partner C&G Partners

New York, NY

Steffanie Lorig

Creative Consultant Lorig Design & Strategy

Seattle, WA

Kim Baer

Principal KDBA

Santa Monica, CA

Brian Collins

Chief Creative Officer and Co-founder Collins

New York, NY

2005 Back to top

2005 Judges
Deb Aldrich

Partner and Co-founder D'NA Company

Pasadena, CA

Doug Herbert

Principal, Design Director Savage Brands

Houston, TX

Bobby Martin Jr.

Founding Partner Original Champions of Design

New York, NY

Pat Samata

Partner Samata

Chicago, IL

Michael Osborne

Michael Osborne Design

San Francisco, CA

2004 Back to top

2004 Judges
DK Holland

DK Holland

Brooklyn, NY

Rick Valicenti

Founder and Design Director Thirst

Chicago, IL

Robynne Raye

Modern Dog Design Company

Seattle, WA

John Clark

Principal, Designer Looking

El Segundo, CA

David Cannon

David Stuart Cannon

2003 Back to top

2003 Judges
Jurek Wajdowicz

Emerson Wajdowicz Studios

New York, NY

Stefan Sagmeister

Sagmeister & Walsh

New York, NY

Fred Ritchin

NYU Tish School of the Arts

New York, NY

Ron Jeffries

2002 Back to top

2002 Judges
Robert Louey

Louey/Rubino Design Group

Santa Monica, CA

Tom Laidlaw

Laidlaw Group

Boston, MA

Kent Hunter

Hunter Bee

Millerton, NY

Tim Bruce

Lowercase, Inc.

Chicago, IL

Deb Aldrich

D'NA Company

Pasadena, CA

2001 Back to top

2000 Back to top