Young Designers Circle 2022-2023

Celina Andino
YDC Coach / El Salvador

Celina is an artisanal product designer and professor with 15 years of interdisciplinary expertise in product design and sustainable development project management. Her project portfolio draws bridges between the academic world and the work of not-for-profit organizations, boosting design and higher-education participatory approaches. She conceives design as a conscious and personal decision-making process leading to solutions with the potential to positively impact people’s lives, thus requiring a great professional and ethical commitment. As a researcher, she has been a speaker at events such as the Design Principles and Practices Research Network conference, and the First Conference on Mesoamerican Textiles (TEXTIM), publishing articles in The International Journal of Design Education and the Ibero-American Biennial of Design. Celina holds a Master of Arts in Cultural Policy and Management from Sheffield Hallam University; she is alumni of the Community Solutions Program sponsored by the U.S. Department of State and implemented by IREX. Currently, she serves as the director of the MA Product Design programme at Universidad Centroamericana José Simeón Cañas (UCA) in El Salvador. She enjoys any opportunity to connect with nature, taking a field trip, observing plant and animal life, or simply talking to cacti and stuffed bunnies.

Ralitsa Debrah
YDC Coach / Ghana

Ralitsa is a designer and educator with over a decade experience of consulting both locally and internationally. She is a lecturer at Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Ghana; and a facilitator at e/merge Africa Network – CILT, CHED | University of Cape Town, South Africa. She serves as a committee member and Juror on several design organizations such as Open Design Afrika, DesignGhana, Pan Afrikan Design Institute; Type Directors Club, Cumulus and DESIS Network. She is a co-founder and acts as the Technology and Innovation Specialist for Inclusive-Tech-Group, a not-for-profit organization in Ghana. She actively participated in WDC-2014, Cape Town, South Africa and WDC-2020, Lille, Métropole. Also, she supports YDC initiatives and was a core team member for 2020-2021 cohorts. Her research interests include: Design, Social Innovation, Sustainability, Human-Computer-Interaction and EdTech for Social Transformation within Transdisciplinary settings. She is a lifelong learner and a futurist.

Owen Foster
YDC Coach / United States

Owen, a designer and educator with vast experience in architecture, landscape, environmental, and industrial design, is passionate about the relationship between design and learning. It’s been stated that there is no such thing as a boring conversation with Owen. He has mastered the art of storytelling and knows that the most powerful way of connecting to people is by relating to them. He believes that every experience is an opportunity to learn something new and that the measure of success is to apply yourself in all you do. He is the co-founder and director of Aether Global Learning and SHiFT Design Camp, where he aspires to cultivate free-thinking, compassionate practitioners who will passionately lead their local and global communities through logical discourse, impeccable craftsmanship, and sound strategic direction. He desires to deliver a world-class educational experience for the worldwide community of creators, thinkers, change agents, givers, and leaders through platforms for discovery, creativity, and reflection.

Kimia Amir-Moazami

Kimia Amir-Moazami completed her design studies at the UdK Berlin. During her semester abroad at the Design Academy Eindhoven, she was able to deepen her knowledge in the field of design research and experimental design approaches. She has gained experience as a UX and product designer and is currently working on the further development of her bachelor’s project within the framework of a one-year scholarship together with the Ph.D. chemist Sany Chea. In addition, she is leading the design semester in the advanced art course at Berggruen Gymnasium Berlin. She is particularly interested in interdisciplinary projects and enjoys exploring new topics.

Santiago Avella-Perdomo
United States

Santiago Avella-Perdomo is a learning enthusiast currently pursuing his undergraduate degree in User Experience Design at Savannah College of Art and Design. He is a designer which focuses on empathy as the keystone for problem-solving nowadays. Furthermore, he is the founder of Captura tu Mundo, an international community of more than 80,000 photographers whose main goal is to democratize photography´s learning. Moreover, he considers himself someone who loves working with and for technology, using it to connect emotionally with people and therefore, create better experiences.

Marco Antonio Barba Sánchez

Marco Barba is a Mexican industrial designer. Founder of a studio specialized in product development, packaging and experiences. Its objective is to achieve greater impact, making empathetic and unique products with an incredible look and feel. In which it always seeks to implement solutions that meet the bases of sustainability (economically, ecologically and socially viable). His work has been awarded +20 international design and innovation awards (

Marco has also been a promoter of good practices and the impact that design can have on companies and society. He is currently a member of the advisory council of the Anáhuac University and has taught at universities such as CEDIM, as well as talks at various universities and spaces for businessmen.

Geovana Blayer

Geovana Blayer is a Brazilian Designer and also a Master in Architecture and Urbanism by Federal University of Uberlandia, Brazil. She has 9 years of experience, theorical and practical, in several areas of Design, such as: Interior and Graphic Design, Strategic Design for Sustainability, Design for Social Innovation, among other fields. She has great interest in researching and designing projects linked to social initiatives and their contribution to the 17 Sustainable Development Goals. Currently, working as a researcher in the area and running her own creative design business, Blayer Studio, specialising in interior and visual communication projects.

Danna Gonzalez

Danna Camila Gonzalez Ortiz is an industrial designer pursuing public administration and a Master’s Degree in Design for Social Innovation. She is currently working on a project called BIO-FADI that explores alternative energy from plants and garden design with a community of female heads of households. She has  participated in several design contests, competitions and presentations.

Abigail Hoover

My name is Abigail Hoover. I recently graduated from the University of Alberta’s Industrial Design Undergraduate Program. In September, I will begin my masters in the Global Innovation Design MA/MSc program at the Royal College of Arts in London.

My current passions are heavily tied to environmental and social sustainability. My primary work has focused on the Outer Space Industry utilizing space-based technology to forward life on Earth through co-design and transdisciplinary collaboration.

I’m incredibly excited to participate in this year’s Young Designer Circle and to meet, work and learn with individuals who share like-minded ambitions towards sustainability.

Muhammed Khan

Muhammad is a user experience research intern at Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada. He holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology and is currently completing a graduate certificate in human-centred design. Muhammad has spent the past 5 years working in the Canadian public service in various departments and is passionate about using design to improve the way governments deliver programs and services to the public. As a designer and researcher, he aims to help make the world a better place by advocating for people’s needs and working with them to facilitate interventions.

Nyariara Njoroge

Nyariara is a Human Centered Designer based in Nairobi Kenya. Passionate about healing systems to work well for those they are created for, she refers herself as a Systems Doctor.

With diverse experience in working in healthcare, education and climate change design she has worked with organizations such as ThinkPlace and Equalize Health. As a Certified Professional Coach she brings meaningful behavioral science insights in design through connection of the invisible line between the obvious people behavior and their true systemic drivers.

Nyariara enjoys moments when she has deep laughter and is intentional about creating time for opportunities that allow for this.

Hazal Doga Kilickap

Hazal Doga Kilickap is a designer based in Finland. Her work focuses on collaboration to find out the needs and create the services that will make life better for people, organisations and the environment. Hazal has a B.Sc in Industrial Design from Ozyegin University and a M.A. in Service Design from University of Lapland where she completed her thesis on Sustainable Development using Service Design methods. Currently she is working as a Service Designer at Alt Company with projects from around the world focusing on digital services, also she is the co-founder of Design Activism for Regenerative Futures.

Zeynep Meleksoy

 Zeynep Meleksoy is an interior architect and designer from Istanbul Turkey. She is excited in social and experience based design that is sustainable, innovative and providing concrete solutions with a strong story behind. Upon graduating from Bilgi University and NABA-Milano Zeynep has been working with Ypsilon Design on exhibition and industrial design projects. She attended the Architectural Association, UK robotic workshop and completed her internships in MESA construction company and ETUD architecture firm. While designing she feels like an individual tree that strives to give maximum energy and nutrition for the well being of its forest. She also sings jazz.

Stephanie Padilla

I am Stephanie Padilla, a Design Manager from the Philippines. I am an Industrial Design graduate, and  I started my professional practice by providing design services to Philippine MSMEs to open business opportunities. In 2017, I started collaborating with diverse groups of designers and creatives, entrepreneurs, and with local and international design organizations and experts in designing and implementing programs which resulted in more than a thousand local designers and creatives trained.

Currently, I maintain partnerships and pursue potential collaborations in designing programs that will address the needs of the design ecosystem, locally and globally.

Suyoung Park
South Korea

Hello everyone, my name is Suyoung and I am from South Korea. I studied Communication Design in Korea and got my start as an experienced UXUI & Interaction Designer in Germany. I have a strong understanding of how to make and think of users’ perspectives and experiences. I’m a person who has a very open mind and a lot of interests. Through this opportunity, I want to find design needs for people and contribute to making a better world as a designer.

Riyaaz Roy

I am Riyaaz Roy and I am a student of animation design from Kolkata, India. I am in the last few days of finishing my bachelors in design with specialisation in animation at MIT Institute of Design, Pune, India and in the near future, I am looking forward to study animation direction at Filmakademie  Baden-Württemberg from September, this year. My most notable work which is close to my heart is a 2d-animated film which I made on the disorder- pure OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder) and my experience with it titled ‘OCD of Riyaaz Roy’ which is currently running in festivals.

Davis Ruiz

Greetings, I’m Davis Ruiz, from Pasto, Colombia. My experience in design began at the University of Nariño, with the design of a self-assisted rehabilitation element, aimed at people with limb amputations due to anti-personnel mines (APM). Subsequently, I have focused on designing methodologies for the development of community tourism in Colombia, as an alternative to improve the quality of life of people, employment generation, poverty reduction, inclusion of women, environmental sustainability, preservation of traditions. community and tourist infrastructure. Through collaborative design with the communities, results have been achieved that have made it possible to strengthen their capacities in the territories.


Pedro Sáez Martínez

Pedro Sáez Martínez applies design to social and environmental challenges of today, with a focus on Social Innovation and Circular Economy. He has a background in different fields such as Industrial Design and technological Research & Development, design for the Hábitat sector, Cooperation for Development and Communication, design of brands and digital platforms, Social Design and Co-design, circular business models design.All these experiences have shaped how Pedro understands design. Now, he is mainly focused on Strategic and Service Design for SDGs and regeneration, working in his design studio Monnou. For him, design is about aligning stakeholders and co-creating (not only economic) value.

Ssanyu Sematimba
South Africa

Ssanyu is an Art & Design, and an Entrepreneurial Leadership (EL) Faculty at the African Leadership Academy (ALA). EL is designed to build the interpersonal leadership skills that are essential for future agents of change.  She has a BA Degree in Graphic Design, BA Honours in Visual Communication, and Postgraduate Diploma in Innovation & Design Thinking, and is currently completing her Masters in Digital Art by Research at the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg South Africa. As an educator, her focus is to foster a sensitization of their role as leaders for growth and development in changing their local communities.

Valeria Valdez

Valeria is an Industrial Designer with studies in Electronics. She is a Master’s degree candidate in Product Design  & Development at UAM Azcapotzalco. She has been coordinator & facilitator of Global Goals Jam Mexico City since 2017 to 2021 and of Disur Jam for the Congress “Diseños del Sur” for Latin America. Her projects seek to integrate design, technology and gender to address complex problems in society. She has been exhibiting her work in Museo Franz Mayer, El Rule, Pandeo, MedialabMX, University of Illinois and Seattle Design Festival. In 2019 she received the prize “Premio Nacional de Diseño: Diseña MX”.