Announcing Teresa L. Gonzalez, Design Impact’s New Executive Director

Caitlin Behle
Design Impact,


Announcing Teresa L. Gonzalez, Design Impact’s New Executive Director


Release: May 13, 2021
For Immediate Release


CINCINNATI — Design Impact is pleased to announce Teresa L. Gonzalez as its new executive director. Teresa succeeds Kate Hanisian, who co-founded Design Impact 12 years ago.


Teresa comes to Design Impact with over 20 years of experience and an extensive background in reforming complex systems within the social justice sector. Most recently, she led as executive director of Centro Legal de la Raza, a comprehensive legal services and advocacy organization in the Bay Area, protecting and advancing the rights of immigrant, low-income, Black, and Latinx communities through legal representation, education, and advocacy. Teresa has also served in various nonprofit leadership roles spanning health, education, and criminal justice fields.


“Teresa is a phenomenal leader with a proven track record as an agent of change and advocate for social justice. Her experience and expertise will help shape the future of DI. Not only will she be an asset to DI but to the Greater Cincinnati region,” said board president Ashlee Young.


As executive director, Teresa will work closely with staff and the Design Impact board to increase the organization’s impact locally, regionally, and nationally. She sees part of her role as envisioning how the organization can be part of the broader racial, social, and economic justice movement to ensure that communities of color around the country are defining and living into their visions for their own liberation.


Design Impact’s nontraditional model promotes shared and decentralized power within the organization. Teresa is thrilled about the opportunity to lead Design Impact into its next chapter. “Being a part of Design Impact’s translocal mission is a tremendous opportunity to be a catalyst through multi-sector partnerships that inform policies, practices and conditions driving inequities for BIPOC communities across multiple issues. Eliminating structural racism and barriers — while cultivating local assets with community-driven strategies — are imperative for authentic, meaningful, and sustainable social change,” Teresa said.


Teresa joined Design Impact on April 19, 2021.


About Design Impact:

Design Impact is a nonprofit social innovation firm based in Cincinnati, Ohio. DI collaborates with individuals, organizations, and funders to apply creative and inclusive approaches to complex social challenges. Their approach combines creativity, equity, and leadership practices to create social change. They do this in part by centering and amplifying unheard and underserved voices — especially those directly impacted by the issues — in the design of their own solutions. For more information, visit