Katie Kirsch

I’m Katie,

a designer and business strategist at IDEO.

I play an interdisciplinary role at IDEO that has spanned marketing, business development & strategy, and design research on the side.

For my current focus in biz dev, I help manage a multi-million-dollar portfolio with Fortune 500 companies and Silicon Valley startups alike, spanning AI and emerging tech, software-hardware integration, mobility, retail, consumer products, and health & wellness. You can find me on the front lines leading conversations with clients about fees, deliverables, impact, success metrics, constraints, and the innovation process. I revel in identifying ways that we can help companies solve their most pressing challenges—which requires deeply understanding clients' objectives and needs, structure, and capabilities, and clearly communicating the value we can deliver.


Outside IDEO, I run a non-profit that empowers girls to step up as leaders and change the world.

I co-founded Girls Driving for a Difference back in college, as a student at the Stanford d.school. We first got started with a crazy cross-country road-trip, where we spent 14 weeks driving across the US in an RV, teaching design thinking & leadership workshops for 1,500+ girls across 30 states. (Thank you, Kickstarter!)


Our workshop now lives on as a physical teaching toolkit and digital curriculum—see below! Today these materials reach hundreds of schools and educators in 15 countries and 4 different languages.

Last summer of 2018, we organized and ran our first superhero-themed summer camp for 50 girls in the Bay Area, called “Girl Possible.”

I’m a Stanford grad —> faculty member for design research.

Somehow Stanford lets me come back on campus every year to help teach an advanced design research course geared towards seniors in the Product Design Engineering program—the same program I graduated from a few years ago.

Another favorite side hustle is design/business consulting for startups and non-profits.

I work across the Adobe Creative Suite to bring graphics, marketing collateral, and other materials to life—while also helping early founders think through their product roadmap, UVP, and brand positioning.

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I love speaking and facilitating workshops at conferences and events.

For example, I co-keynoted SAP’s most recent Women In Technology Conference and taught a design / leadership workshop at SXSW Edu. Past topics include:

  • Empowering girls to become the leaders and change-makers of tomorrow

  • Discovering your mission statement for changing the world

  • Kickstarting your business / social enterprise through design

Let’s talk: