Dave Cooksey
Experience Designer

Hi, there. My name is Dave and I am a user researcher and experience designer.

I currently work at Charles Schwab in Austin, Texas, where I am the team user researcher for Schwab Advisor Services. I believe in the power of information to improve people’s lives, which is the motivation behind my work at Charles Schwab.

I have been practicing Information Architecture and User Experience for more than 10 years, building upon my academic training by practicing UX in agencies and as a consultant. Today, I continue to evolve my practice in the enterprise setting by adapting “traditional” user research and design activities for Lean and Agile approaches. (Spoiler: this is harder than it sounds. Haha.)

In my design practice, I focus on 3 things

  1. Organization — Creating order from non-order
  2. Clarity — Making things clear (Notice I did not say ‘simple' as the world is complex)
  3. People — I believe in human-centric approach to technology

And my work consists of 3 concentrations.

  1. Research — Contextual inquiry, usability testing, and analytics
  2. Information Architecture — Structuring information for use in a search and browse environment 
  3. Interaction Design — UI design including navigation, page layout, and visual design 

You can follow me on Twitter at @saturdave.


I’ve held both Information Architect and User Experience Lead job titles. In both I have performed the essential user-centric activities needed for building great user experiences: primary user research to inform design strategy, Information Architecture to organize content for use, Interaction Design to create user interfaces, and usability studies to vet designs.

Having been a front-end developer (XHTML/CSS/.NET) and database architect before getting into UX, I can speak “engineer” and enjoy collaborating directly with developers.

And having an advanced degree in social sciences, I look for bridges between theory and practice, the academic and the professional.

I have had the good fortune of working with companies like Quicken Loans, Ace Hardware, Anthropologie, Toys ‘R Us, Bath & Body Works, Dick’s Sporting Goods, The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, and David’s Bridal.

You can view my professional profile on LinkedIn.

Beyond the Office

My work in user experience spans outside the workplace and into community organizing and professional organizations. Much of what I have learned about experience design has come from peers, so it has only been natural to spend time giving back to the community.

At the global level, I have been involved in organizing the Information Architecture Summit for more than a decade. I had the honor of co-chairing the 2017 IA Summit in Vancouver, Canada, a 5-day conference with more than 500 attendees. At the local level, I have served multiple times as President of PhillyCHI (ACM SIGCHI), Philadelphia’s interest group for human-computer interaction.

But enough about me… What have you been up to lately? 

Current Obsessions

Designing Better Teams
Meeting Design by Kevin Hoffman
The Five Dysfunctions of a Team by Patrick Lencioni
Death by Meeting by Patrick Lencioni
Radical Candor: Be a Kickass Boss Without Losing Your Humanity by Kim Scott

UX in Lean & Agile
Design Sprint: A Practical Guidebook for Building Great Digital Products by Richard Banfield
INSPIRED: How to Create Tech Products Customers Love by Marty Cagan
Lean vs. Agile vs. Design Thinking: What You Really Need to Know to Build High-Performing Digital Product Teams by Jeff Gothelf
Sense and Respond: How Successful Organizations Listen to Customers and Create New Products Continuously by Jeff Gothelf and Josh Seiden
Sprint: How to Solve Big Problems and Test New Ideas in Just Five Days by Jake Knapp

Information Science
Information and the Information Professions: Selected Works of Marcia J. Bates, Vol. I by Marcia J. Bates 
Information Searching Theory and Practice: Selected Works of Marcia J. Bates, Volume II by Marcia J. Bates 
Information Users and Information System Design: Selected Works of Marcia J. Bates, Volume III by Marcia J. Bates 
The Information: A History, A Theory, A Flood by James Gleick

Colorblindness (aka Color Vision Deficiency)
Colour Blind Awareness
Color Accessibility Workflows by Geri Coady
The Island of the Colorblind by Oliver Sacks

Philadelphia Museum of Art
Barnes Foundation
Museo Tamayo
Museo de Arte Moderno

Art & Design
Star Wars Art: Ralph McQuarrie by Ralph McQuarrie, Brandon Alinger, Wade Lageose, and David Mandel