SisterVote (Brand/ Logo)

CLIENT: SisterVote

ART DIRECTION: Ascender Communications, LLC


LIFE for Sickle Cell Foundation (Logo/Brand ID)

Making a Difference. One Life at a Time

CLIENT: Life for Sickle Cell Foundation, Inc.
DATE: Summer 2012

'The Gospel of Healing' Premiere at IAC | Thursday,July 26 2012

Ascender  premiered our first feature-length documentary film 'The Gospel of Healing: Volume I: Black Churches Respond to HIV/AIDS' at the 2012 International AIDS Conference in Washington, DC , July 26th, 2012, in the Global Village Screening Room.   This was the first time in 22 years that this conference will be held in the United States.  Nearly 200 people filled the screening room (which had actual seating for only 100) through out the film screening.

Unfortunately, many were turned away.

Almost six months later, we are still receiving requests the screen the film and host workshops around the country.  We are honored to have played a small part in such a significant event.


International Stigma Conference (2011- Present)

Client: CEAS / Howard University
Project: Organization and Conference Branding, Conference Poster Series (2010-2013)
Art Direction: Paul Grant

We have had the pleasure of working with a team of passionate doctors and advocates who founded a non-profit based at Howard University School of Medicine. Their mission is simple.  They want to eradicate all health-related stigma. Their goal is to create a Center for Study of Stigma, housed at the school.  It's  a worthy cause.  Their outreach began with HIV-related stigma then came the first conference wholly dedicated to looking at ways to eradicate stigma associated with HIV/AIDS.

The Ascender team jumped at the chance to brand their new organization, Coalition for the Elimination for AIDS-related Stigma (CEAS) and their first annual conference, The International Stigma Conference, which takes place around World AIDS Day , at Howard University since 2011. Take a look at our work since then.

'Colorado Get Ready: The Wellness Train Is Coming'

The Ascender team worked very hard throughout spring and summer 2011 to help The Collorado Black Health Collaborative to re-design and  promote the release of their 2011 Resource Directory --a statewide listing of African American healthcare providers.  The booklet is also full of articles, up-to-date fact sheets and healthy recipes.  CBHC Resource Directory Page Spread 2

The 2011 resource directory will be released  for free online and distributed in print across the state, through CBHC's vast network of  partners, including  businesses, the Colorado State Department of Public Health and Environment, community-based and faith based organizations.

It's all about promoting wellness. Wellness--as we understand it-- is a lifelong commitment to maintaining good wholistic health practices and seeking preventative care. That takes real commitment. For CBHC Resource Directory Pages Sample 2many, the notion of 'wellness' is challenging. But it is a concept that we all have to embrace. Just because you provide a person with health insurance, doesn't mean that they understand how to use it to actually stay healthy, improve their health and overall quality of life.

That calls for a community mind-shift.

Thelma Craig, the Chair of Collorado Black Helath Collaborative --also a writer and perhaps one of the most creative partners that we have had the pleasure of working with--came up with the idea of a 'wellness' as being a train. CBHC  is the conductor and their goal is to shout 'All aboard!, ' loud enough for everyone to get on-board in order for the train to move away from its present station.

We like that idea.  It also means that Ascender is their bullhorn.

CBHC Family Reunion Flyer
CBHC 2011 Family Reunion Event Flyer

So, how do we-- in producing and  promoting this invaluable resource -- make health and wellness 'sexy'? How do you shift the public mind-set away from getting sick first before you seek care? And then, how do you make it easy for an entire community to find out where they are to go to get appropriate care?  This year, we developed a passion for health marketing  and asking these types of questions....It's gonna take more that slick design and witty slogans and it going to take consistent crafting and disseminating messages that raise awareness about the threat of chronic illness, the availability of new treatments and promoting healthy lifestyles.

We are going to make certain that CBHC's message of wellness is resonated, statewide. So, stay tuned and be ready... The 'Wellness Train' is headed your way,too.




CLIENT: Tangy Major


Re-Imagining the African-American Experience in World War II

Coming Home (Poster Concept 1)Ascender is very proud to be assisting the Prince George’s County African-American Museum and Cultural Center with multimedia web creative and design. Among our first tasks: To design promotional materials for their upcoming May exhibition: “Coming Home: How the African-American Presence in World War II Shaped Prince George’s County”   

We jumped at this opportunity. To get started we studied archival images that were provided by the museum. Then we studied U.S. propaganda poster art from the period taking a particular interest in those with African-American representations.

The first thing we noticed was how today you can walk into any restaurant, bar –maybe even your local hardware store—and find reproductions of Uncle Sam’s glowering “I Need You to Serve…” poster or the “We Can Do It” poster which celebrated American women serving in factories… Both are pretty exceptional.  But, have you ever seen posters featuring Heavy Weight boxing champ, Joe Louis or celebrated Navy hero Dorie Miller? WWII Poster Concept 2

Nor had we… The reasons why these images haven’t been more prevalent over time are far too many to discuss on this site. Point is, we thought we throw our hat into the ring and design a couple of our own. What was our goal? To create something that celebrated black men and women who served their country and portray them with valiance, strength and a dash of rugged inspiration without being too emotionally heavy-handed.

When all else failed, we looked to Clint Eastwood... The posters for  “Flags of Our Fathers” were contemporary, elegant and thoughtful. So, we thought, 'Why not combine aproaches and let the client decide?'

With any luck, what we create will portray these many great men and women with the honor they deserve.