About The Founder – Rebecca Hargrave Malamud

Read an interview with Rebecca Hargrave Malamud
Founder of the Rural Design Collective.

In A Nutshell

Rebecca Hargrave Malamud is an award-winning designer, creative director, open source advocate and artist living in Sixes, Oregon. She is best known for her creative design work on groundbreaking Internet projects, including The Internet 1996 World Exposition, Public.Resource.Org, Change Congress and Open Library. In 2007, she founded a mentoring program known as The Rural Design Collective to share her professional knowledge with people in her local community.

Early Career

Rebecca’s first job out of art school was setting type on a Compugraphic 8600; a device that was soon to be made obsolete with the popularity of the personal computer. In very short order, she was required to transfer these skills to create typography for demanding art directors and skeptical agency principals using a meager Macintosh SE and Aldus Pagemaker 1.0. Did I fail to mention the modem was 1200 baud? The rest, as they say, is history.

In the late 1980’s she managed and helped develop a production network of ad agencies and designers working remotely across the United States on Macintosh computers. As part of this work, she helped many agencies transition from traditional pre-press environments into the digital realm. In 1992, she co-founded Productivity Online, one of the first ISP’s in Cincinnati, OH, which developed many of the first online presences for the corporations and organizations in the city. In addition to this effort, she coordinated a consortium of designers working across the Internet to develop a knowledge and productivity resource. Shortly thereafter, she designed the 1996 Internet World Exposition working with a diverse team of artists, writers, programmers and photographers around the globe. A book and CD ROM about the project was released in 1998, which she developed working remotely with the author, Carl Malamud, and the publishing house, MIT Press, in Cambridge, MA.

Rebecca’s career in web design and Internet architecture began in 1992, when the only option to enter the field was to teach oneself the required skills. She began to develop independent creative works, and as a result her firm was recognized as a pioneering creative force in the early days of the web by several noted organizations. During this period, she worked with and learned from respected Internet and web pioneers across many disciplines and discovered the power of using her talent to support initiatives she believed in. This career path instilled in her the belief that key apprenticeships, research, collaboration and self motivation are paramount to learning, creating relevant work and promoting change on the Internet as well as in the world. Rebecca excels at motivating creative people, pushing a project through to completion, and organizing projects remotely.


Rebecca’s creative work has received accolades from The Webby Awards, NewMedia Invision Awards, Art Directors Club of New York, Communication Arts, HOW Magazine, and the Global Information Infrastructure Awards. Her work is frequently mentioned in the media, and most importantly, provides solutions for her clients.

You can learn more about her at http://webchick.org/ or follow her on twitter at @webchickbot. She also posts occasional home movies at the Internet Archive.

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