We're a team of strategists, designers, and engineers on a mission to solve critical challenges

What makes us special to work with

Reveal insights that lead to demand

Our sweet spot is digging deep to discover the key insights around consumer needs and wants - that ultimately inform solutions that drive higher demand.

Approachable, direct and transparent 

From day zero to launch, we meet with our partners to review, debate, solve, and make decisions in real-time. This brings critical product knowledge into our design process and ensures clear understanding of our design development.

Creative and pragmatic

This is the core of who we are - design and engineering. We are wildly creative and at the same time disciplined and pragmatic in our approach. It's a balance or a combination of the two that produce the best outcomes.

Track record of success

Our diverse project experience, and the sheer volume of projects that have made it to market is unmatched. Many of our creations have gone on to become huge market hits.
“Design’s secret weapon.”
1999 - 2001

Getting Our Start

A new Industrial Design and Mechanical Engineering consulting firm called Whipsaw was founded on July 21, 1999, by Dan Harden and Bob Riccomini in San Jose, California. Acer, Cisco Systems, and Creative Labs are Whipsaw's first clients. Dan was previously President of Frog Design and Bob was Director at Silicon Graphics.
Whipsaw team circa 2000
2002- 2004

Keep moving on

Whipsaw-designed Leapfrog Quantum Pad wins the Educational Toy of the Year Award, Toy Wishes Hot Dozen, and Toy Wishes All-Star Education & Learning. Rio launches an all-new line of personal MP3 players that go on to place Rio in second place in the market behind only the Apple iPod.
2005 - 2008

Expanding

Whipsaw grows from consumer electronics to include biotech and medical device experience with the launch of Dynatherm post-surgery recovery device, Dionex Chromatography system, and Optovue Retina Scanner. A partnership with Stanford and Reuters leads to the design and development of a digital dirt bike that delivers internet access and medical services for third-world communities. Whipsaw founder, Dan Harden, is featured as a “Master of Design” by Fast Company.
2008 - 2012

Establishing

Whipsaw came into its own with a multitude of exceptional products and a new brand identity. The Adiri Baby Bottle achieved an unprecedented feat by sweeping every international design award, collecting five Gold awards. Known for an audacious approach, Whipsaw secured its position among the “Top 5 Most Innovative Design Firms” by Fast Company. Whipsaw engineers travel to China more than 30 times in the development of the Nike FuelBand.
2013 - 2016

Industry Impact

Whipsaw's partnership with founders, early-stage companies, and international corporations is showcased through projects like the Google Chromecast, Google OnHub router, Dropcam home security cameras, TP-Link networking devices, and the Dell Precision line of computers. In 2014, Dan Harden was named one of Fast Company's "100 Most Creative People in Business.” During this time, TP-Link became the world's #1 networking company with sales of over 100 million Whipsaw-designed products. Whipsaw’s service offering organically evolves to include more dedicated research and digital design capabilities.
2017 - 2021

Resilience

Whipsaw embarked on an exceptional journey by opening its new studio in San Francisco in 2017, bookending Silicon Valley. The year brought a series of remarkable achievements, starting with Dan's well-deserved recognition through IDSA's Personal Recognition Award. Brita's instant success with the Brita Stream water purifier line and Ceribell's prestigious accolades in the Medical Design Excellence Award further solidified Whipsaw's reputation for innovation. The Tonal strength training system and Tile's bestselling tracker product further highlighted the company's impact on the market. Amidst these triumphs, the world faced the challenges of a pandemic, prompting remote work and adaptation. Nevertheless, Whipsaw's research practice engages in multiple national and international projects.
2023

Boost

Emerging from the pandemic, Whipsaw consolidates studios to a new single location in the Potrero Hill neighborhood of San Francisco. This move offers the full team a single location to connect and collaborate under one roof. Whipsaw launched the Whipsaw Design Lab (WDL) to push the boundaries of design innovation and also launched the Whipsaw Research Network (WRN) to embrace participatory design methods and better connect with end users throughout the design process.
Whipsaw

Meet Our Team

Dan Harden
CEO, Principal Designer
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Anne Van Itallie
Director, Business Development
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Cole Derby
Director, Industrial Design
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Walker Harden
Director, Experience Design
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Mike Elam
Director, Engineering
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Dyana Chargin
Director, Finance
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Tom Underhill
Creative Lead
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Natalie Rowan
Senior Industrial Designer
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Mark Hearn
Lead Industrial Designer
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Rachel Arredondo
Senior Experience Designer
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Chloe Georgiades
Senior Industrial Designer
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Tiffany Gleason
Senior Project Manager
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Rod Romantsov
3D Visualization Designer
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Benjamin Martin
Industrial Designer
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Mike Dong
Experience Designer
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Carlos Terminel
Industrial Designer
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Lauren Hishinuma
Mechanical Engineer
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Celine Wong
Industrial Designer
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Grace Budgett
Industrial Designer
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Alex Gao
Industrial Designer
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Emma Kushner
Project Manager
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Shariah McKenzie Walthour
Marketing Manager
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Jaye Ahn
Experience Designer
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Candace Pong
Experience Designer
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Yunhao Song
Industrial Designer
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Saoirse Lewis
Studio Manager
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Join us in solving critical problems for some of the world’s leading brands

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