Lead with Heart Project

To us, leading with heart is all about practicing empathy, making a positive community impact, and putting people first. The Lead with Heart Project is just one way we put our values into action.

Lead with Heart Icon

Performing beautifully, together.

“Lead with Heart” is one of our core values.

Our Lead with Heart Project is all about strengthening our community involvement by supporting service-oriented organizations with our time and talents.

And we’re always looking for more opportunities to get involved. If you’d like to partner with us on a project for your organization, let’s connect.

We’ve partnered with the following organizations on projects big and small — from designing websites and hosting in-person workshops at our office, to creating new logos and offering our advice.

Communities In Schools works to address social barriers that stand between Kalamazoo kids and school success.

From tutors and college visits to food assistance and health services, Communities in Schools (CIS) Kalamazoo works hard so that kids can start strong and be prepared for life. Since 2013, we’ve supported them in that mission in the following ways.

Building Community Together

In the winter of 2019, we devoted our time to throwing a Winter Festival for the CIS afterschool program at Lincoln Elementary, where we shopped the students’ wish lists and surprised them with a day of games, activities, and gifts. We did it for the kids, but we had a blast, too!

We’ve also supported CIS Kalamazoo with donations to their kids’ closet — in 2019, we donated over $5k in hats, coats, and gloves during the winter season. (Want to help out? Here’s how.).


Website & Marketing

Outreach is a crucial part of getting CIS Kalamazoo the support they need to make their mission a reality. We’ve supported them over the years by designing their website, helping them refine their brand messaging, and designing their annual reports, newsletters, and marketing materials.

Visit website

Student Engagement

Making post-high school plans can be an important part of crafting a student’s future. We love CIS and we love design, so naturally we invited a group of CIS Kalamazoo students to our office for a workshop field trip with our creative teams, and we’ve visited Kalamazoo Central High School to talk to students about careers in design. Our involvement with CIS has encouraged more team members to volunteer with them, too!

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A pit bull mix panting happily.


As part of a Learning Design Team challenge where each designer was asked to create a unique training on a topic of their choice, animal rescue advocate Kendra designed an animated, modern, digital course on the volunteer onboarding process for the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) of Southwest Michigan. It turned out so well that when she asked if they would want to use it for real, their answer was a resounding YES!

Big Brothers Big Sisters

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Southwest Michigan helps children realize their potential and build their futures through mentorship programs. We partnered with them to get the word out by consulting with them on voice-of-customer work, content strategy, storytelling consulting, and social media strategy.

Taking our turn for Scott Matzka

When one of our former team members, Scott Matzka, was diagnosed with ALS, we made it a priority to support his desire to leave a legacy. Scott’s mission was to raise awareness of ALS through his “My Turn” campaign. He fought hard until his passing in December of 2018, and the work we did together lives on.

Brand identity & website design

We partnered with Scott to create the logo and tagline for My Turn, and we took it a step further by executing some of his social media strategy.

To boost his awareness campaign, our team designed and built Scott’s custom website, which still acts as a resource for people to learn more about ALS and get involved.

Visit website

Capturing Scott’s story

Our stories are everything to us; they’re what make us human. Our writers worked with Scott to capture his story while he was still able to tell it. In the days before we had our own media team at Maestro, we sent Scott over to our friends at Rhino Media, who produced a documentary about Scott’s journey with ALS.

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Open Roads

Open Roads Bike Program is a Kalamazoo-based nonprofit that uses bicycles to engage, empower, and teach youth practical life skills for their futures. When our office moved downtown, we partnered with them to purchase and build bikes for their youth programs. And we partnered on some design work, too!

Posters we designed for Pecha Kucha events.

Pecha Kucha

Various members of our team have worked hard to bring the storytelling event Pecha Kucha to life in Kalamazoo since 2017, in partnership with Intersect Studio and Rhino Media.

Upcoming Events

Fostering entrepreneurship

As a small business, using our resources to support and grow Southwest Michigan’s local creative and entrepreneurial scene is near to our hearts. Over the years, we’ve been involved with such initiatives as MIX Southwest Michigan, Startup Grind, and WMU’s Starting Gate to foster entrepreneurship in our community.

Supporting our community during COVID-19

When Kalamazoo families were affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, we asked ourselves “what can we do to help?” We acted quickly to deliver tangible support to our community by creating a website to connect people to donation and volunteer opportunities at food pantries and support centers like Kalamazoo Loaves and Fishes. We also put our digital learning talents to work by creating a free informational PPE course to promote safe face covering and hand washing techniques.

Chicago Loot Drop

Chicago Loot Drop seeks to develop an inclusive gamer community and share their love of games within the city of Chicago. Additionally, the volunteer events enable them to raise funds and donate toys and games to a variety of causes. We loved the work they were doing and wanted to support them, so we rebranded the organization to better reach the gaming community.

Kalamazoo County Ready 4s (KC Ready 4s)

The mission of KC Ready 4s is to advance fully accessible, high-quality pre-kindergarten education for every 3 and 4-year-old in Kalamazoo County through collaborative leadership with public and private providers. In an effort to increase awareness about the program, we partnered with KC Ready 4s to create a series of 10 videos that spoke to the impact that the organization has on our local community.

Let’s work together

If your mission is to serve your community, we want to support you.

Each quarter, we make it a priority to use our time and talents to boost organizations, individuals, and causes that are dedicated to making their communities stronger and more beautiful.

We select projects based on the following criteria:

We want to support projects that have potential to create a positive impact in your community.

We look forward to working on projects that align with our skills and values.

We agree to projects based on our teams’ availability.

We love our communities, so we’re especially excited to partner with organizations that serve the areas where we live, where we work, and that we love.

Not sure if you’re a good fit? We encourage you to apply anyway! Please fill out the form below and we’ll get back to you soon.