Recent DVC alum wins national Silver ADDY award by the American Advertising Federation

Gisselle Dominguez

In May, UWM celebrated its latest group of graduates moving on from academia and into their next chapter. For some graduates, it has not taken long to receive recognition that provides a valuable boost to the start of their professional careers. 

Recent graduate Gisselle Dominguez (BFA 2024, Design & Visual Communication) has since been recognized by the American Advertising Federation with a Silver ADDY Award in Student Packaging at their national competition. 

For the ADDYs, Dominguez submitted her brand campaign entitled Endiablada, or “devilish” in Spanish. Designed in ART 329 under the instruction of Robert Grame (Associate Professor and Co-Area Head, Design & Visual Communication), Endiablada is a craft soda brand packaged in glass bottles, taking inspiration from the popular Jones Soda Co.  

Dominguez’s designs honor her Hispanic culture as well as the community of Milwaukee.  

“This was an exploration of not only showcasing my illustrative approach but also exploring for the first time how I can fit that into a package design,” said Dominguez. 

Gisselle Dominguez won a Silver ADDY Award in Student Packaging at the American Advertising Federation’s national competition. | Submitted photo

Each glass bottle has one of four heroic figures that represent strong aspects of Dominguez’s Hispanic heritage: the fighter representing resiliency, the singer capturing artistic expression, the gentleman signifying dignity, and the dancer celebrating the joy of movement and culture. 

“The figures really captured the devilish resilience and determination I wanted to convey,” said Dominguez. “As a first-generation American, and being surrounded by Hispanic pop culture, these characters remind me of the major aspects of life I learned from inspirational figures growing up. I’m sure others can relate to this as well when they think of the figures they looked up to.” 

Throughout her time at UWM, Dominguez pursued a steady stream of work. Whether that was interning at advertising firms such as Bader Rutter and Hoffman York or designing cans for Panther Pale Ale, Dominguez is always seeking opportunities to improve her craft and showcase her work. 

Dominguez credits her diverse array of work experience as giving her confidence to enter the ADDYs. Additionally, she thanks her mentors for being sources of inspiration. 

“If I didn’t have professors like Robert Grame or people at work cheering me on, I would not have had the confidence to sign up for this,” said Dominguez. “To see it slowly evolve from a regional award to a national ADDY, that’s been a huge testament.” 

Dominguez, now working with ad agency BVK as a graphic design intern, uses the recognition she has received as a reminder to stay confident in her future as a designer. 

“Overall, this is a huge testament to my abilities to keep growing my skills, seeing what other areas of advertising I can venture into,” said Dominguez. “It’s a validating testament that I can actually be in this industry. I can go into advertising, I can go into marketing as an artist and designer.” 

Story by Jason McCullum ’25