Don’t Judge a Designer by Their Cover

From a small-town upbringing to a vibrant life in Chicago, Abbey La Tour highlights the importance of not judging others by appearance and their dedication to enhancing Catalyst’s publications.

Abbey can be seen here with some of their favorite things, her three cats (Sylas, Sherman and Toblerone) and books.

Over the past several weeks, I hope you’ve had as great of a time meeting my Catalyst Communications Network (CCN) teammates as I have!

I recently joined CCN as its new digital production designer, and in my short time here thus far, I have really enjoyed making sure my coworkers’ personalities shine throughout our magazines.

I know that, on the outside, I may appear vastly different from our typical contributors and columnists. I am a non-binary goth who happens to be married to a woman. We live in Chicago with our 3 cats — Sherman, Toblerone and Sylas — despite both growing up in small cities that were mere minutes from rural America.

Now, I don’t know about you, but growing up, my grandma always said, “Don’t judge a book by its cover.”

And she’s right, I really am not that different once you get to know me.

I was born in Illinois where I grew up among corn fields. I spent most of my childhood in Peoria, the home of Caterpillar (don’t worry John Deere lovers, I spent some time in the Quad Cities too). My journalism career started in college at Southern Illinois University’s student newspaper, The Daily Egyptian. Since then, I have worked at numerous organizations, such as The Peoria Journal Star, The Dispatch-Argus, American Institutes for Research, The News-Enterprise, Paxton Media Group and Gateway Journalism Review.

When Brian Ethridge, CCN’s head of content, reached out to me about the digital production designer position, I jumped at the opportunity to be part of the CCN team. Catalyst stands for change, and as someone who loves learning, it was an exciting prospect that I couldn’t pass up.

In my free time, I love to learn. I enjoy collecting and reading books. Away from work, you can also find me contemplating potential recipes to try out, lurking in the aisles of my favorite local produce store.

I love to bake and cook meals, whether that be for myself or my family and friends. This past week, I baked a strawberry rhubarb pie and brownies — but a frequent request is always for me to bake focaccia.

Since joining the crew at CCN, I have been working in the shadows to continue the standard of excellence of my fellow peers and those before me. I aim to continue to ensure CCN’s publications are beautiful, readable and engaging. Recently, I have even been contributing photos to some of the stories within our magazines.

With my new role at CCN, I hope to continue to further the company’s goals toward sustainability, inclusivity and progress—and most of all, stories that connect us.

Abbey La Tour headshot

Abbey La Tour (Digital Production Designer)