Elaine Korenich

Elaine Korenich

Graphic Designer; Board President of EqualityToledo

January 9, 2018


Elaine Marie K designs, Root Inc., EqualityToledo


Tell us more about some of your past projects?

As a graphic designer, a friend of mine asked me to create a map of her partner’s neighborhood (also my ‘hood: the Old West End) as a gift, and that turned into a love of local cartography. I designed and screen-printed maps of several neighborhoods in Toledo, which have been available at Handmade Toledo and I featured at the last Artomatic419. I’ve also worked in the art glass world, focusing mostly in casting and pâte de verre.

What current projects are you working on?

Right now, my focus is on my work with EqualityToledo. It’s less creative in the artistic sense, but our organization makes real change in the area and is responsible for some huge movement forward for LGBTQ people.

I’m also freelancing as a designer for a few friends and their businesses. You’ve probably seen my work on a few political signs around this past election cycle. #PickNick

At the office, I’ve been working on a lot of board game design, which is really fun to dig into: there are lots of problems that great design solves, plus play-testing is a real thing I get to coordinate!

What advantages does being in Northwest Ohio/Toledo offer your efforts?

I’ve found that what I appreciate the most about Toledo is that you can see the change you make here. The people who are involved in our city are passionate and welcoming, and it’s easy to volunteer your way to some pretty cool work.

Tell us about one of your greatest successes.

I’m so proud to have been involved with EqualityToledo. Two summers ago, we threw our first LoveFest at the Love Wall mural on Adams Street. In our first year, we saw more than 600 people from all over the city and beyond come together to celebrate love and togetherness, and raised a record-breaking amount of money for the worthwhile cause of the organization’s mission.

Tell us who or what gives you inspiration?

The people of our city really make me step up my game, and we have some really first-rate institutions like the Glass Pavilion and Arts Commission.

Tell us about your background.

I grew up in the suburbs of Pittsburgh, and came to Northwest Ohio for school. I graduated from BGSU in 2005 with a BFA in graphic design and (essentially) a minor in glass, and I’ve been around the area ever since. I’ve lived in Findlay, Perrysburg, Point Place, and now I love keeping my historic home cozy in the Old West End.

Do you have a motto or favorite quote you try to live by?

I don’t really have a specific motto, but when in doubt, I think about what Leslie Knope would do in that situation.

Favorite place for local culture?

I’ve found that hanging around the Original Sub Shop or Handmade Toledo keeps me abreast of the best stuff that’s happening in the area. It’s important to listen to your girl gang: they’ll drag you to the best stuff!

Toledo’s “best kept secret” is . . .  


My favorite place to chill locally is . . .

Georgjz419 Fun Food and Spirits

My favorite natural space in the Toledo area is . . .

I live near the arboretum in the Old West End. It’s a personal favorite. That block on Robinwood is my absolute favorite during the few weeks before the leaves fall in the autumn. It’s like a golden canopy of a hug.

When I’m not working hard, I can always be found at . . . 

My kitchen counter baking cookies. Or somewhere on Adams Street.

If you could change anything about the current landscape for creative, progressive people . . . 

Making creative education a priority and affordable.

Any exciting collaborations (past or present) you would like to tell us about?

Nothing super exciting or groundbreaking, but I love collaborating with friends in the glass studio. I’ve been assisting my pals for years, and I enjoy the work that comes out of our work together.

Name one person (living or deceased) who you would love to collaborate with.

Stanislav Labensky is probably one of my favorite glass artists of all time.

Name a CD, book or website you can’t live without.

I recognize this is probably cheating, but I need Spotify in my life.

3 words that best describe me or my work are . . .

Dedication to readability

Give us 5 Desert Island Album picks.

Miseducation of Lauryn Hill - Lauryn Hill
The First Days of Spring – Noah and the Whale
Lungs – Florence + the Machine
Miles of Aisles – Joni Mitchell
Any cast recording of Jesus Christ Superstar

My biggest vice is . . .


I’d like to see __________ in Toledo.


What’s the last dream you recall having?

I’m pretty sure my house had turned into the Museum-Go-Round from Mister Rogers Neighborhood. I should probably try that.

The last lyric that moved me was . . .

“Don’t be a hard rock when you really are a gem”

One movie character I identify with is . . .

Rob in High Fidelity

The best gift I’ve ever received was . . .

My godmother gifted me a 3-D light-up portrait of Jesus for Christmas the year she moved out of her childhood home in Pittsburgh. Every member of our family got a gift found in the attic, but, I have to say, mine was clearly the best. It sits in my living room now, and we even dress him up in party hats and google eyes for celebrations.

My most inspiring moment was/is . . .

My 30th birthday in Europe

I want my last meal to be _______________.


Additional websites: rootinc.com & equalitytoledo.org


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