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News & Press: Pressroom

AICC 2017 Designers’ Lab Proved to be a Great Event for All

Monday, October 2, 2017   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Alyce Ryan
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The AICC 2017 Designers’ Lab was held September 24-26 in conjunction with the Annual Meeting at the Encore Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada. Attendance was up significantly this year with thirty-four designers participating from AICC’s member companies and six students. The student attendees were winners of the AICC Student Packaging Design Competition and hailed from the following schools: Clemson University, Dunwoody College of Technology, Michigan State University, and The University of Texas at Arlington. This three-day event gave designers the chance to learn new techniques—in both structural and graphic design—from experts in the field to network with their peers and to show off their talents.

The event kicked off with a lunch and presentations from the sponsoring companies which included Arden Software North America, Esko, Gerber Technology, and Xante. Encorr Sheets and Wasatch Container were also contributing sponsors of the event. Next, Dan Malenke, President of PKGPRO, discussed "Trends in Paperboard Packaging” and Dr. Andrew Hurley, Assistant Professor at Clemson University, spoke about "Leveraging Human Factors in Packaging Design.” The lunch wrapped up with a presentation by Rick Kay of Sweets Candy Co, who presented this year’s "real world” challenge. The designers were tasked with creating a standard floor display or half pallet sized display utilizing the 13oz bags of Sweets Taffy. Additionally, they had to design a matching family of displays utilizing the company’s different sized bags of taffy. They all had to be retail ready with little to no setup at the store.

The designers were split into teams and set to work. Different from years past, the designers had a full extra day to work on their challenge. Set up in the room for all teams were two functioning CAD tables provided by Esko and Gerber Technologies, a digital printer provided by Xante, and software and computers sponsored by Arden Software and Esko.

The designers had to give a presentation about their entries on Tuesday afternoon to an expert panel of judges. The full list of winners is below.



 1st Place – Team 6

-Brian Labonte of Lawrence Paper Company
-Adrian Lozano of Corrogados Logo
-Scott Neff of Skybox Packaging
-Kristin Warehime of Dunwoody College of Technology
-Matt Whitlock of Sumter Packaging





2nd Place – Team 8

-Keith Diablo of Commencement Bay Corrugated
-Lindsay Knowlton of Merrill Industries
-Ritchie Gray of Sumter Packaging
-Enrique Gutierrez Trejo of Corrugados Y Especialidades









3rd place – Team 1

-Juan Manuel Beltran of Celulosa Y Corrugados de Senora
-Jeff Burks of Clemson University
-Stephanie Jones of Commencement Bay Corrugated
-Steve Kramer of Jamestown Container
-Michael Turnball of Great Little Box Company







Honorable Mention – Team 7
-Kathryn Amlin of Great Little Box Company
-Brandon Garcia of Harris Packaging
-Shannon Mahoney of New England Wooden Ware









All of the participants will receive an engraved award to commemorate the event. Special thanks to the companies that sponsored and contributed to the success of the 2017 Designers’ Lab! 

For more information on the Designers’ Lab, please contact Laura Mihalick at or by calling 877-836-2422.