Clarissa posing with a cardboard cutout of Flo from the Progressive commercials.

At the Progressive corporate headquarters in 2012 to give a talk on responsive design to the Cleveland Web Standards Association. Flo was not able to attend the event.

I’ve been working on the web since 2002, in nearly every role you can imagine. I started as a front-end developer and moved on to focusing on content strategy, UX design, and digital strategy in recent years. My diverse experience enables me to fill a unique role in teams, bridging the gap between designers, developers, and all the other areas that are necessary to build and maintain websites and software.

I’m especially interested in accessibility, and I’m a Certified Professional in Accessibility Core Competencies (CPACC).

In the early part of my career, I was lucky enough to work at some pretty awesome places, such as the Library of Congress, AARP, Fannie Mae, and the Leadership Conference on Civil & Human Rights. I’ve also worked for Ralph Nader.

In 2012, I started speaking at design and tech conferences, where I give presentations on topics such as UX design, mobile strategy, and responsive design. Lately I’ve been talking a lot about ethics for designers and developers. I have given talks or workshops at more than 70 events so far. I also create online courses for LinkedIn Learning (Lynda.com) and I’ve taught in the web developer fast track program at the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology (SAIT)

I wrote a book called Learning Responsive Web Design: A Beginner’s Guide, which was published in 2014 by O’Reilly Media. This book is a start-from-the-beginning introduction to responsive design, targeted towards designers, project managers, department heads, and others who may have trouble getting into the many more technical, developer-focused books on responsive design. It’s great for the members of your team who are having trouble understanding the concept of responsive design, and everything that needs to happen to make a responsive website work well.

I recently moved back to Chicago (nearly 20 years after the first time I lived there) and I’m so excited to be back in the midwest. I grew up in central Wisconsin (lots of cows), and I’ve also lived in Houston, Washington, DC, Montreal, and Calgary. As of 2019, I’m a dual U.S./Canadian citizen!

In my free time I read, go camping and hiking, and visit quirky museums.


Some Other Writing

Additionally, I served as a technical editor and/or technical proofreader for Getting Started With High Performance Web Design (2015), Smashing Magazine (2012-2013), and The Mobile Book (2012).

Online Courses

Podcast Episodes

  • TalkScript, Episode 13, August 14, 2018
    Lying to the Browser/Advertising Alcohol to Alcoholics (LIVE AT NEJS)
  • CTRL+CLICK CAST, March 12, 2015
    Responsive Typography with Clarissa Peterson

Selected Press & Etc.