Maz joined Advocacy International as a Creative Director in 2008. Her work stands at the intersection of design and advocacy, of information navigation and information delivery.
Maz Kessler’s creative education began in New York’s downtown no-wave music scene in the 1980s, writing and playing synthesizers in art bands. Her early work in synthesis put her at the center of the digital-musical revolution, including work for Roland and Akai-Linn. Maz wrote her first ‘pop’ tune as a bet, and was a chart topping song writer within weeks of signing with CBS, collaborating and recording with a diverse range of pop, R&B, and dance artists including Malcolm McClaren, Hall and Oates, Madonna, The Breakfast Club and Adele Bertei among many others. She was a founding producer in NY’s acid jazz scene, writing and producing for jazz legends the Brecker Brothers (with whom she won a Grammy). Maz has also scored music for film & TV including the theme for Showtime/ITV’s Ace Award winning Chris Cross, NOVA for PBS and Are You Afraid of the Dark for Nickelodeon.
In 1993 Maz co-founded FunArts Software. FunArts specialized in conversational interfaces, and developed and licensed a framework for wrapping social intelligence around media. Working in both voice (VUI) and visual interface design, FunArts client highlights include General Magic’s influential Portico Virtual Assistant, SCHWAB, BMW, Microsoft Office 97, Bandai Entertainment and Microsoft Far East among others. In 1996, FunArts principals were named Creative Directors for Microsoft’s Social Interface Group. Maz co-authored UI design guidelines for “Designing and Producing Speech Systems – Practice and Principles” for Microsoft Speech group. In 1999 FunArts was acquired by NetSage, where Maz continued on the executive team until 2000.
Maz’s work in advocacy, design and communications began in 2002. She brings her technology and design skills to bear on progressive issues that focus on achieving positive change. As co-founder of Keep a Child Alive, a high profile global AIDS foundation, she helped to define the organization’s visual identity and mission while developing programming to provide life-saving AIDS medicines to children and families. Starting in 2004 Maz worked as a consultant with additional organizations and NGOs to create identities, develop strategic communications plans and design and produce websites and social media. Her clients include ICEC, Debtonation, AIDS-Free World and Women Deliver.
As part of her work at Ai, Maz specializes in supporting and providing advocates with the best possible data, in the best form, so that they can influence decision-makers and change hearts and minds.
Multidisciplinary creative and strategist experienced in designing and delivering design and communications strategies for progressive organizations, campaigns, governments and companies.
Design and production of creative assets
Areas of Focus
Women’s health and rights
Technology for social change