About Us

Bay Area Black Designers was founded by Kat Vellos in 2015. It is a professional development community for Black people who are digital designers in the San Francisco Bay Area. We are design professionals working in all areas of digital design, at every level from beginners to experts.

Our members practice:

  • [UX] User Experience

  • [UI] User Interface Design

  • Interaction Design

  • Graphic Design

  • Web Design

  • Product Design

  • UX/Design Research

Being designers from an underrepresented ethnic group in tech means that most of us can relate to the isolation of feeling like “the only one.”  In community we share inspiration, connection, peer mentorship, professional development, resources, feedback, support, resilience, and project collaboration. Our community is also a space to safely and confidentially express the challenges that we deal with as a marginalized population within the tech industry, and to be a source of support to each other. If you are a non-Black person, please respect this need and our space; thank you. 

If you are not a Black designer but want to network with this group, please invite us to participate at another meetup or event that you're doing or contact the organizer about being a guest speaker if you have something specific you want to share with us.

How we got started:
BABD was founded in the summer of 2015 by designer Kat Vellos. She started the group because she’d been a designer for over a decade, but could count the number of Black designers she knew on one hand. She craved community and believed that other black designers did too. As of April 2019, BABD’s member count is 428.

Want to hire a black designer or reach the organizer? Contact us.


Are you a Black designer (or an aspiring one in the SF Bay Area in search of more community?

"Essential if you are a Black designer in the bay area. Community is your sanity, motivation, and connection when you have nothing else."

— BABD member feedback 


"[This is] a group of creative, inspiring and dope black designers contributing to the greater good of the design industry by working together to develop each other."

— BABD member feedback


"This group has given me such a sense of community." 

— BABD member feedback