Yesterday was one of the best days I have had in a long time, and professionally one of the greatest moments.
By connecting over 70 partner organizations with students, schools, and parents, I Have A Dream Oregon (IHAD) is a unique non-profit organization that forms an unstoppable team, truly leveling the playing field for equal education.
Their mission is to support and empower students growing up in poverty-impacted communities, so they can thrive in school, college, and career.
But it was time for the Portland chapter of IHAD to forge their own path and separate from the national parent organization.
With a launch date only six weeks away, they approached us for a name and brand for their newest non-profit effort.
This new name needed to reflect the core idea that the collective power of a community is greater than the sum of its parts.
"Greater Than" said it all—it was a perfect name for them. We loved the notion of power in numbers, and we felt the name spoke well to their cumulative efforts.
To avoid the potential pitfall of the name coming off as overly-proud or boisterous, we championed the phrase “Together We Are Greater Than” and put it right in the main logo lock up to give clear and immediate context.
As a nod to students, teachers, and parents that are the community base of Greater Than, we looked to classic schoolhouse aesthetics as our source of inspiration.
The handwriting was inspired by a schoolteacher’s comments on homework, and the typeface, Shift Light, offered a textbook feeling with a sophisticated refinement.
We created a secondary icon inspired by the mathematic Greater Than symbol, comprised of multiple thin lines to symbolize community and alignment.
Everything was coming together nicely, and the client was thrilled.
And to their relief, the new name and brand was also met with rave reviews from those that mattered most: the parents, the students, their Board, and even their biggest funders.
Read more here, and, if you are inspired, get involved. If you are in Portland, we encourage you to go check out what they are doing at Alder Elementary. We know we’re biased, but we think they’re doing pretty amazing work!