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SPAN Studio Portraits BR 220307 1 AB copy

Partner & Design Director

Bud Rodecker

Bud Rodecker is a founder and design director at Span and an adjunct professor at DePaul University. His work explores the space between logical constraints and formal play, and balances form with meaning. He is interested in systems and processes with the potential to create design. In 2022, Rodecker was named one of Newcity Magazine’s Design 50 in recognition of those who shape Chicago’s design community.

Rodecker was a designer and later a partner at Thirst from 2005–2019. Rodecker’s work with Thirst has been displayed in the Venice Architectural Biennale, the Chicago Cultural Center, Typeforce, published in various publications including Graphis, Concept Magazine Indonesia, IdN Magazine, Slanted, archived in The Chicago Design Archive, and earned recognition from the STA 100, Design Observer 50 Books 50 Covers, and by Graphis with a platinum award.

Outside the studio, Rodecker explores the process of creativity through self-initiated experiments and teaching design at DePaul University. He has participated in numerous design-related lectures, workshops, and panels—sharing his unique perspective on design and the creative process.


Illinois State University, 2017
Cardinal Stritch University, 2014
Bradley University, 2014
AIGA West Michigan, 2014
Spark Conference, 2014
Oklahoma State University, 2014
SEEK Conference, 2013
Apple Store, Lincoln Park, Keynote Presentation, 2012
The School of the Art Institute, Keynote Presentation, 2012
UMD Student Show 2012, Keynote Presentation, 2012
The American Academy of Art, Keynote Presentation, 2012


Adjunct Professor at DePaul University, 2012–Present
Instructor at The Chicago Portfolio School, 2011–2012