Daydreamer turned designer.


Katherine (Kat) is a product designer who is passionate about designing ethical, accessible, and inclusive solutions that leverage tech to positively impact others. When she's not wireframing or prototyping, she's writing and coding. She is also the creator of the <Design Ethically> project, which explores how product teams can implement ethical practices in their day-to-day process.

She is currently in Austin, TX at IBM Design on the Security team, building IBM Security Connect, a cloud platform for security developers to integrate existing SaaS products that proactively protect enterprises from cyberattacks. She also collaborates with IBM’s AI Design Practices team to pilot <Design Ethically> methodology with product teams at IBM. Previously, she was in Washington, D.C., designing products for the US Air Force via IBM iX.

While she was a student at Duke University, she majored in design and received grants from the Kenan Institute for Ethics to conduct ethics research in Santo Domingo and Dublin. Her research in Santo Domingo focused on the effects of codified racism; her research in Dublin was centered around refugees and migrants.

Her hobbies include: developing <Design Ethically>, creating podcast art, crafting photo essays, teaching kids design thinking, volunteering with Front Steps and Everytown, collecting secondhand books, mentoring underrepresented designers of color, tickling the ivories, and traveling without Google Maps.



Reading Superintelligence by Nick Bostrom

Learning how to shoot 35mm film

Listening to Student 1 and Princess Nokia



SXSW 2019: March 12, 2019 in Austin, TX

ATX Speculative Futures: February 27, 2019 in Austin, TX

Decolonize Austin 2019: January 20, 2018 in Austin, TX

UXPA DC World Usability Day: November 8, 2018 in Washington, D.C.

IBM Craft Con: August 16, 2018 in Austin, TX

IBM Design Studio: April 12, 2018 in Washington, D.C.

UXCamp DC: January 13, 2018 in Washington, D.C.

Ideate: April 15, 2017 @ Duke University


An Interview with Kat Zhou: Marvel, February 05, 2019


Fun Facts

Performed piano in NYC's Carnegie Hall four times

Placed 2nd (twice) @ the National Speech & Debate Tournament

Was an extra on House of Cards Season 6, Episode 3