Alumni Stories

Lindon Leader

BFA 78 Advertising

ArtCenter grad Lindon Leader is the designer behind the legendary FedEx logo with the secret arrow. He designed it in 1994 while working in the San Francisco office of Landor Associates as senior design director. Named as one of the eight best logos in the past 35 years by Rolling Stone in its 35th-anniversary issue (2003), the FedEx logo has won over 40 design awards and continues to set an example in art schools for designing with negative space.

Leader’s design philosophy is well known: simplicity and clarity. Over his 30-year career in brand strategy, trademark design, naming and identity management, he has created many influential corporate identities which follow these basic design principles. Besides Federal Express, his most recognized assignments include branding programs for Avery Dennison, Hawaiian Airlines, Ryder System and Brazil’s Banco Bradesco. He has authored successful brand-repositioning strategies for Motorola, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, the NCAA and Hanley Wood, among others, and worked with leading design and identity consultants, including Saul Bass/Herb Yager and Landor. Since 2001 Leader has been serving the branding needs of clients across the country from his strategic design consultancy, Leader Creative, in Park City, Utah.

His work has been recognized by AIGA, D&AD, the Advertising Association of Brazil,the International Brand Packaging Council and the Art Directors Clubs of Los Angeles and San Francisco. It has appeared in publications such as Communication Arts, Graphis, Print, American Corporate Identity, Catalog Age, Computer Arts, Fast Company Design, How, Identity Magazine, I.D., Rolling Stone and The Washington Post.

Leader was honored with a Tribeca Disruptive Innovation Award and named a Disruptor Foundation Fellow in 2014, and he received FedEx’s Bravo Zulu award for exemplary performance by a team member. Leader’s work is in the permanent collection of the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum. He regularly mentors aspiring designers and speaks on corporate identity matters. He has also donated considerable work to nonprofit organizations in Park City.

Before he pursued a bachelor’s degree in Advertising from ArtCenter, Leader earned a

bachelor’s degree in political science from Stanford University in 1972.

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