Chicago Blackhawks

The Chicago Blackhawks, an iconic NHL professional hockey organization based in Chicago, IL, boast a rich history dating back to 1926 as one of the Original Six teams. With six Stanley Cup championships and a devoted fanbase spanning generations, they have made an indelible mark on the sport of hockey.

During my 6-year tenure at the Chicago Blackhawks, as the first full-time in-house Graphic Designer in Marketing, I collaborated with a small team and partnered with internal departments and agencies. I played a crucial role in creating creative projects from scratch, including the annual Blackhawks Convention, special events, and the acclaimed One Goal advertising campaign. This experience sharpened my adaptability, project management, and problem-solving skills, solidifying my passion for graphic design in the sports industry and dedication to delivering impactful creative solutions.

Blackhawks Convention

From 2008 to 2019, the Chicago Blackhawks held an annual fan convention at the Hilton Chicago, with over 10,000 attendees each summer. The convention was the first of its kind in NHL history and featured Blackhawks players, coaches, executives, and alumni throughout the weekend. The event also included Q&A panels, autograph and photo sessions, special exhibits, interactive games, and more. The Blackhawks Creative Team was responsible for developing and evolving the event’s identity and branding each year, creating a cohesive and immersive environment for attendees through a range of print, digital, and spatial design elements.

Year: 2008-2014
Role: In-House Graphic Designer
Location/Market: Chicago Hilton (Chicago)
Creative Assets: Apparel (Bags, Shirts, Pucks, etc.), Branding/Logo, Embroidered Patches, Large Format Print (Banners, Window Clings), Print (Passes, Programs), Signage (Directional, Elevator, Poster, Stage)
Creative Team: John Sandberg


While with the Chicago Blackhawks, I had the privilege of producing various publications tailored to their dedicated fanbase. Two standout publications were the books “One Goal” and “One Goal II,” which meticulously recounted the team’s glorious journeys to Stanley Cup victories in 2010 and 2013, respectively. These books provided an intimate glimpse into the players’ experiences and the team’s unwavering determination, becoming cherished keepsakes for fans to relive those historic moments. Additionally, the Blackhawks’ game day programs, aptly named Blackhawks Magazine, proved to be a valuable source of in-depth insights for fans, featuring player profiles, interviews, behind-the-scenes stories, and more. These publications further deepened the bond between the Blackhawks and their supporters, fostering a strong sense of pride and camaraderie throughout the hockey community.

Year: 2010 & 2013
Role: In-House Graphic Designer
Creative Assets: Book (Hard Cover, Wrap), Magazine (Blackhawks Magazine Game Day Program Cover Sleeve)
Creative Team: Adam Kempenaar, John Sandberg


As the in-house Graphic Designer for the Chicago Blackhawks, I was responsible for producing a wide range of printable projects in collaboration with several local vendors. These included publications, banners, posters, tickets, pocket schedules and holders, game-day giveaways, out-of-home, and specialty printing. Due to the varying budget sizes, some projects required unique and unconventional processes and techniques to create engaging and fun pieces of creative.

Year: 2008-2014
Role: In-House Graphic Designer
Creative Assets: Blu-Ray DVD Case, Large Format Print (Vinyl Banners), Media Guides, Specialty Print (License Plates, Die-Cut, Foil Stamping, etc.), Tickets
Creative Team: Adam Kempenaar, John Sandberg

Premium Giveaway Items

The Chicago Blackhawks, known for their passionate fanbase, have a long-standing tradition of offering exciting game day giveaways to enhance the fan experience. These giveaways, distributed to attendees at United Center during home games, range from team-themed merchandise to promotional items. Fans have been treated to a variety of items such as commemorative jerseys, bobbleheads featuring iconic players, branded hats, scarves, and other memorabilia. The game day giveaways not only foster a sense of camaraderie among Blackhawks supporters but also serve as cherished keepsakes that allow fans to connect with the team on a deeper level and create lasting memories of their time at the rink.

Year: 2008-2014
Role: In-House Graphic Designer
Creative Assets: Bobbleheads (Boxes)
Creative Team: Adam Kempenaar, John Sandberg

Bobby Hull & Stan Mikita Statue Unveiling Ceremony

On October 22, 2011, the United Center in Chicago witnessed a historic event—the unveiling of statues honoring two legendary ice hockey players, Bobby Hull and Stan Mikita. These iconic figures had an indelible impact on the sport and the city during their illustrious careers with the Chicago Blackhawks. The ceremony served as a celebratory tribute to Stan Mikita, who dedicated an impressive 22 seasons to the Blackhawks, earning two Hart Trophies as the NHL’s Most Valuable Player and four Art Ross Trophies as the league’s leading scorer. Bobby Hull, affectionately known as The Golden Jet, was also immortalized as a Chicago Blackhawks alum, having played 15 seasons for the franchise and earning numerous accolades, including three Hart Trophies as the NHL’s Most Valuable Player. Both players were pivotal in the Blackhawks’ 1961 Stanley Cup victory, and their contributions were further honored with the retirement of their numbers, forever adorning the rafters of the United Center.

Year: 2011
Role: In-House Graphic Designer
Creative Assets: Branding/Logo, Large Format Print (Outdoor & Concourse Banners)
Creative Team: Adam Kempenaar, John Sandberg

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