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Posted December 21, 2012

Our 20th year in business begins


Most people love celebrating anniversaries. But we all know these celebrations are inherently odd. What makes a day or a year truly special? Its number? If that were true, something significant (e.g., the end of the world, or the beginning of a new one) might have actually occurred on Dec. 21, 2012.

But we’re not superstitious. Even so, we’ll use this day to mark a somewhat arbitrary point in time and, in the style of romantics everywhere, meditate for a moment on its significance.

Approximately 19 years ago (it’s true, we don’t remember the specific date!), Jell began life as Grossmann Design. “We” were a one-man shop, a spin-off of Dave Doty’s PageWorks, improbably optimistic about a future as an independent design firm. Back then, founder Joe Grossmann was juggling design commitments with writing books for Ventana Press and various magazine columns.

We’ve now weathered three — count ‘em, three! — recessions. We’ve expanded, contracted slightly, and are expanding again.

Most importantly, we’ve honored three early commitments without wavering, and these core values have consistently paid off: 1) aspire to be the smartest creative firm in town; 2) accept every new challenge as a learning experience; and 3) maintain supreme loyalty to those clients who value incisive thinking, research, and dialogue. These core values have consistently paid off.

So as our 20th year begins, we thank many people: those clients who have been with us for so many years; those brilliant and talented past team members who contributed to our growth and evolution; and those supporters (“friends of Jell”) who have sung our praises to others.

We’ll check back in midway through the year and let you know how our 20th is going.

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