Bethany Stolle is a user experience professional with a background in design research, interaction design, curriculum development, education, nonprofit work, and entrepreneurship. She loves design, theory, collaboration, and making ideas happen.
Combining an interest in learning, meaning-making, and design, I spent nearly a decade developing innovative, experiential curriculum for Augsburg Fortress, a non-profit religious publisher.
While there, I helped launch sparkhouse, a division that embraces design thinking practices to create products that are used and loved in thousands of churches and classrooms across the country.
I studied Interaction Design and Social Entrepreneurship at Austin Center for Design (AC4D), completing the intensive program in 2013. After graduation, I created a design research practice at sparkhouse and brought new methods of prototyping to the team. The 2015 launch of Sparkhouse Family (now Beaming Books) represented a move toward consumer-driven products for sparkhouse and was shaped by two major design research initiatives I led.
I currently work as the Design Research Lead on Blackboard’s Product Design team, where I’ve grown our research practice from occasional, ad-hoc projects to a regular cadence of generative and evaluative studies to ground and inform our design work. My day-to-day involves a mix of running studies, overseeing research operations, and equipping colleagues to lead their own projects. Our insights inform both strategic and tactical decisions across the organization and are a tangible way we partner with the global education community.
The daughter of a teacher and an artist, I am passionate about designing for “wicked problems” in education and beyond. Since starting Stolle Creative, I have worked on meaningful design projects for higher education technology, academic institutions, and non-profits. I also lead design workshops and speak at conferences.
In my free time, I love traveling, experimenting with odd recipes, listening to (too many) podcasts, going to the farmers market, drinking coffee, and meeting new people. My husband, Brent, and I live in the Seattle area with a couple young humans and a geriatric cat.