Reed Agnew is one of the three founders of ThoughtForm Inc., a design consultancy noted for untangling complex communication problems. At ThoughtForm Inc., Reed has devoted his attention entirely to graphic design and communications. He is specifically interested in integrating language and visual design and especially in the use of visual models to explain complex ideas. His notion of “writing backwards” has guided his work, which has included information spaces and exhibits, brochures, packaging systems, interactive programs, sign systems, annual reports, handbooks, branding programs, websites and software. He is also interested in computer technology and its application to design problem-solving and production, as well as to business management. Before founding ThoughtForm Inc. in 1980 with Don Moyer and Grant Smith, Reed spent 13 years with Westinghouse, mostly at the company’s Corporate Design Center. A graduate of Lehigh University with a degree in civil engineering, Reed served as manager of industrial design and later as manager of the design services group, which also included graphic design. The Design Center was a unique, in-house consulting office, set up under the direction of outside consultants Eliot Noyes and Paul Rand. It provided design services to Westinghouse divisions worldwide for products, graphics, signage, packaging, interiors and architecture.
He has won numerous design awards, published articles on a variety of design-related subjects, speaks frequently at design and business conferences and has been actively involved in AIGA, APDF, IDSA and the Design Management Institute. Reed has served as a board member of the Association of Professional Design Firms (APDF), as well as on the advisory boards of the Design Management Institute and the Institute for Entrepreneurial Excellence at the University of Pittsburgh’s Katz Business School. In 2008, Reed was selected as a Fellow of the American Institute of Graphic Arts (AIGA).