Dave Dryden, Director of Creative Services at Clemson University, is the recipient the 2015 UCDA Award presented at the annual UCDA Design Conference in Orlando, Florida on October 4, 2015.

The UCDA Award was created in 1995. This stunning award, designed by emeritus member j.Charles Walker, is presented by the UCDA board of directors in recognition of those who have donated their valuable time, service and support to further UCDA's goals. Individuals receiving this award have significantly contributed to the success of the University & College Designers Association.

24 years ago, Dave Dryden first joined UCDA, and was serving as president just a few years later. After that first year as president, he wrote, "I have been very proud to serve this organization as president. It has been an eye opening experience in many respects. I have seen that UCDA is truly an organization that draws its energy and life from its membership. UCDA's membership has been described as a "jewel," unique in its emphasis not only on professional matters, but on personal concerns as well. UCDA is about the individuals who pay their dues, network and socialize with each other and believe what they do for their institutions is important and valuable."

"What followed was years of solid commitment by this individual to UCDA," UCDA's president Tina LeMay stated. "They have left a legacy of volunteerism in their wake that continues even here in Orlando."

Dave has been a: UCDA Board member in 1994, 1995, and from 2004-2012; President in 1995 and 2011; Conference coordinator in 1995; Conference chair in 2001 and 2002; Competition co-chair in 2012 and chair in 2013 and again in 2015; served on the UCDA Foundation board since 2013; currently serving as the foundation's treasurer; served as program coordinator for the CASE/UCDA Design Institute for many years; presented at many UCDA conferences; and hosted several UCDA workshops. More than 13 years ago, the UCDA board of directors also awarded emeritus member status to our recipient, in recognition of their outstanding service to the organization.

Dave has said, "I was at Iowa State University before moving to Clemson. I did a short stint in agencies in Minneapolis before moving over to the education side. I have never regretted this decision. I have found higher ed to be the perfect environment for me. I like the variety of work and the challenge off being an in-house agency. I am blessed with a phenomenal staff. I started out as a designer and moved up through the ranks to my current position."

Tina LeMay added: "As we recognize the individual whose support has meant so much to our organization, we must also acknowledge the institutional support they received from Iowa State University and Clemson University that made all of this possible. Anyone who volunteers for UCDA knows how critical the support of their institution is to their level of success. There is no doubt in my mind, though, that both of the recipients institutions benefited from their involvement with this organization."

In 2008 our recipient stated, "UCDA has been an important part of my professional life since I graduated from design school. At various points in my career, UCDA has provided the rejuvenation and inspiration I needed to work through professional challenges I was experiencing. It has been an anchor and a compass that has kept me grounded and on course [while] I have been working as a designer."

"I have taken my role of shepherding this organization very seriously. I see the need daily in my current position at Clemson University to elevate the visibility and importance of the designer. We play a vital role at our respective institutions and UCDA is the only organization that uniquely understands the challenges we face."

In addition, Dave is an avid runner and also loves to cook. "It fuels my creativity," he said. "Food and cooking to me are the ultimate in designing... you are designing for every sense."

"On a personal note," Tina continued, "I've know the recipient for almost two decades. I've never met a kinder, gentler sole than this person's. They are extremely competent, talented and fun to be around. They are the reason I am standing as President as he was the one who encouraged me to get involved and then to run for the UCDA board. They had confidence in me, even when they knew I'd never have it in myself. Without him, I would not have had this wonderful experience."

UCDA Award David Dryden
Photo by Matthew Lester

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