promoting quality of life
Eric Woolridge, AICP
Director of Planning and Business Development
Eric’s passion includes land use planning, small-town and rural economic development, and greenway, bike, and ped planning. He has worked as a professional planner in both the public and private sectors. He likes to ride his bike, play disc golf, and drink good coffee when he isn’t contemplating government/ citizen collaboration. Eric has a Masters in Public Administration from Appalachian State University.
Alex Gotherman, RLA
Urban Designer & Planner
Bringing over eight years of experience in the design of edible, native, and ornamental landscapes, Alex’s passion lies at the interface of urban and rural planning, conservation, and agriculture. Using place-based sustainable design methods, Alex has worked on a wide variety of projects including commercial sites, campus master plans, pocket parks, greenways, and local food infrastructure.
Jason Gaston, PE
Director of Communications & Place Branding
Matt leads Destination by Design’s community branding and marketing-related projects, shoots & directs multimedia and web campaigns, and develops targeted brand strategies that promote quality of life and economic development.
With a Masters degree in Communications and an undergraduate in Commercial Recreation & Tourism Management, Matt is passionate about helping communities uncover their true essence and communicate a shared vision to the world.
Keagan brings Geographic Information System (GIS) skills and field experience in safety and environmental compliance to the DbD team. As a GIS Specialist, Keagan strives to use the power of geospatial technology to help envision and develop a greater connection between people and their natural and built environments. Keagan holds a B.S. in Geography from Appalachian State University. Outside of work, he enjoys hiking, backpacking, reading, and running.
Art Director / Graphic Designer
“Solve the problem first, then make it beautiful”. That’s Dan’s motto. And through his time at design agencies, freelance endeavors, and with companies large and small, Dan brings a wide array of graphic design and art direction skills to the DbD team. From large e-commerce sites and digital advertising, to campaign design, brand development, illustration, animation, and more. Above all, Dan is passionate about providing thoughtful, strategic, and appropriate solutions for clients and their audiences.
With over 20 years of experience in the parks and recreation field, Tim has led recreational planning and programming efforts for outdoor recreation infrastructure improvements and collaborated with a diverse range of partners and private stakeholders on developing local and regional recreational opportunities. Tim has a passion for trails and greenways that provide a variety of experiences for users with a focus on long-term sustainability and natural resource conservation. A user and educator of trails, Tim is an avid trail runner and also enjoys sharing the science of sustainable trail design, construction, and management with others. Tim holds degrees in Forest Management, Parks and Recreation Management, and Geography.
A graduate of Appalachian State’s Graphic Design program, Magnolia is passionate about promoting quality of life and combining images and text to tell a story. Her supplementary skills in photography, video, illustration, copywriting, and social media make her a valuable asset for the DbD team and for clients looking to share messages with their communities. Whether designing a wayfinding system, developing a brand identity, or drafting an infographic, Magnolia is passionate about helping people find and experience unique destinations while empowering them to share their stories along the way.
Web Developer / Designer
We call him our resident magician, but in reality Sunny is a web developer, graphic designer, programmer, and photographer with more than 15 years of experience. Sunny develops custom interactive websites to promote public engagement and assists with marketing place-based assets for DbD clients.The field of urban planning, design, and place branding provides a perfect conduit for Sunny to use his technical and creative skills to enhance quality of life. If you meet Sunny, prepare to ponder what just might be possible.
Lucas is passionate about helping others share their stories and experiences in an ever evolving digital age. He enjoys going on walks in busy places as a way to meet new people and learn about them and from them. “Many cultures go unnoticed and histories untold because they are not as flashy as a blockbuster movie, but they are still relevant and hold important lessons. It’s important that we seek out and promote those stories in a way that is relevant and relatable to today’s culture.” Lucas is a Denton, NC native and holds a B.S. in Electronic Media and Broadcasting from Appalachian State University.
C.J. brings a combined passion for recreation, public space, and placemaking to the DbD team. With experience in both public and private sector recreation, she is inspired by the power of places to connect individuals within a community. In her spare time, CJ enjoys playing music, running, and traveling. She holds a B.S. in Recreation Management from Appalachian State University.
Having experience in both private sector landscape architecture and public sector planning, Dustin is intrigued by how good design shapes communities. With a Bachelors degree in Landscape Architecture, Dustin is passionate about creating places that are not only beautiful but serve the best purpose possible. Dustin has a wide range of interests including master planning, greenways, historic garden design, urban design, and city planning. Dustin is a graduate student
working towards a Master of Public Administration.
VP of Misc. Stuff
Nicole brings field accounting and office management experience to the DbD team. She keeps things flowing and organized! Nicole and her husband, Robert, spent 18 months in service to the community and people of Haiti. I hope you get a chance to meet her; she’s pretty awesome.