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Ideum Awarded as a Champion of Diversity

The USFWS award recognizes the new Valle de Oro NWR Visitor Center team for creating an inclusive, accessible, and memorable experience.
Authored by
Greg Hayes
Marketing & Content Coordinator

The US Fish and Wildlife Service recently granted the 2022 Diversity Champion of the Year Award to the team who created the Valle de Oro National Wildlife Refuge Visitor Center. Ideum joined the team in 2019 to design and build educational exhibits spanning a wide range of digital and physical mediums, including custom fabrication, experience design, software programming, and signage. 

Congratulations to our design and construction partners (Brycon, Formative Architecture, and the Friends of Valle de Oro), Ideum team members past and present, and the wider Valle de Oro community for the wildly successful collaboration that led to this notable visitor experience.

As specialists in—and advocates for—inclusive design, Ideum is proud and grateful to be part of the group being recognized for design principles we hold dear. Valle de Oro has been a truly community-driven project since its inception, with a shared vision that helped naturally align everyone's hard work and creative energy with inclusionary values.

The award's full name, "Justice, Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Access (JEDIA) – Diversity Champion of the Year (Group Award)," briefly sums up the award's criteria, characterized by some of the project highlights called out in the announcement:

  • Exhibits that highlight community members telling their own stories of connection to the land
  • Multiple open-house workshops to gather community input throughout the design process
  • Creation of an at-home way for community to help with design and decoration
  • Accessibility design integral to the fabric of the building, meeting or exceeding ADA and ABA standards
  • Welcoming environment for visitors with neurodivergent minds


We at Ideum love contributing to projects that serve the community like Valle de Oro, and we're especially grateful for the chance to work with local partners to make a difference in the place we call home. 

Thank you to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for recognizing the thought and care that went into making the Visitor Center a welcome place for all. 

Learn more about the many ways Ideum's creative services foster inclusion in interactive spaces

Valle de Oro National Wildlife Refuge welcomes all. There is no charge for visiting the refuge's public areas and the Visitor Center. Hours and amenities may vary, so check Valle de Oro's website for directions and tips to plan your visit. 

Read more about the Valle de Oro Visitor Center project:

Ideum Joins the Valle de Oro Team

The Valle de Oro National Wildlife Refuge: A Community Effort

Ideum Designs Exhibits for Accessibility

Ideum Creates Digital Docents for Valle de Oro

The Valle de Oro National Wildlife Refuge is Open to the Public