Principals

Denise Korn

Principal of Korn Design,
Denise has worked with a wide range of clients including top-of-class developers, hoteliers, chefs, and entrepreneurs, providing expert consultation on an equally wide range of assignments in the categories of leading hospitality, restaurants, luxury goods and ground-breaking strategic work.

Denise set up shop as Korn Design in Boston’s South End in 1992, after six years working as a designer, creative director and art director in New York City.

Actively involved in the political and civic life of greater Boston, in 2003, Denise founded Youth Design- a summer jobs program connecting talented urban high school students to career opportunities in design through professional mentorships. Since its founding, the program has gained national attention and is expanding across the country. She recently wrote a book— 10 Who Mentor— as an outcrop of her work with the New England Creative Economy Initiative and urban youth.

She was honored with the prestigious AIGA Fellow Award for her contributions as a design visionary and youth advocate, is the recipient of two Sappi Design That Matters Awards and most recently, the Leaders in Diversity Trailblazer Award from the Boston Business Journal for her commitment to promoting diversity and inclusiveness within the creative industry. She currently sits on Cornell University’s AAP Committee on Diversity.

Denise sits on the Advisory Boards for AIGA/Boston, DIGMA Design Industry Group of Massachusetts, and The Private Industry Council (PIC’s) Advisory Group. Most recently, Denise was named a Senior Fellow in Social Innovation at Babson College’s Lewis Institute. She was previously Board Chair for Business Outreach, creating forums to connect business leaders and innovators to discuss the role of design communications and its value in smart business practices. Korn also served a two-year term as Co-President of the New England Creative Economy Initiative. 

Javier Cortés

Partner and Creative Director
at Korn Design, Javier has brought his particular variety of talento chilango to Korn since 1996. Javier has an uncanny ability to realize complex brand strategies with ease, producing meaningful design that both delights and supports business and creative objectives.

Driven by innovation, Javier is admired for his deep knowledge of emerging lifestyle trends, abundance of bold ideas, and dynamic visual style, serving clients in the hospitality, real estate, and cultural sectors.

Javier has led dozens of game-changing hospitality projects for clients such as The Waldorf Astoria New York, Four Seasons, The Ritz Carlton, Kimpton, and Host Hotels and Resorts in locations including Boston, Philadelphia, Chicago, New York, Palm Beach, St. Andrews by the Sea and Saranac Lake.

He was named as one of Massachusetts’ most influential people for the Latino community by El Planeta newspaper, and his award-winning work has been published and honored by The James Beard Foundation, AIGA’s National Competition, Graphis, How Magazine and Print Magazine. He has also earned multiple awards from The Best of New England Design Competition (B. O. N. E.).

A native of Mexico City, Javier received his Bachelor of Fine Arts, Magna Cum Laude, from Boston University. Javier served as a Connector for Mayor Thomas M. Menino’s Boston World Partnerships program, as Vice President of AIGA Boston, on the board of Youth Design and YMCA. Cortes is co-curator of the exhibition “Graphic Intervention: 25 Years of International AIDS Awareness Posters 1985-2010,” which travelled to 10 cities including Boston, New York, Atlanta, Miami, and Pasadena, California.