Gil Manalo

Industrial Design
Primary office:
Chalmers, room #343
University of Kansas
1467 Jayhawk Blvd.
Lawrence, KS 66045


What can I say, I have been at a lot of different industrial design institutions. I did the small consultant firms, the large consumer electronics corporations, car companies and even owned an ID consultancy business for a time. Lived and worked a bunch of places around the world. A lot of patents and design awards (blah blah blah). Twenty plus years of consistently solving problems in various roles of the industrial design profession. Always with a stack of bond paper and a black pen.

Where I am now consisting of 60+ total staff industrial designers in our studio. Out of that, I manage a group of 12 secret ninja industrial designers here in the Kansas City Garmin headquarters. It’s great to be here. Recruiting, developing skills, inspiring and innovating new processes are among a few of my duties. Mostly, I enjoy basking in my team’s industrial design culture and passion for perfection.

My goal with the IDSA Kansas City Chapter is to become entrenched with the industrial design people here in Kansas City and the surrounding areas. This means bothering to meet a wide range of people from fresh new design students all the way up to the retired warriors of past industrial design in our immediate community. Most of all, I look forward to talking with the many fellow ID professionals around town. Learning all I can and sharing all I can.

Lastly, I teach the KU Industrial Design Junior Studio course. The Kansas University Industrial Design program graduates about 20+ students a year. There is a small gang of new teachers trying to make a difference there and it is a fresh start. I have learned a lot about myself and it deeply affects how I manage back at Garmin. It makes me a better leader for sure. Constantly dialing back to teach in steps and reasserting my knowledge in a clear and achievable fashion. Thank you, KU.