In Memoriam: Tee Hamilton
Theresa "Tee" Ann Hamilton, owner of Clearwater, Florida-based CreativeAlchemy, and an educator and designer/illustrator who worked with suppliers, distributors and service providers within the promotional products industry, passed away on December 4 after a battle with cancer. She was 54.
Hamilton, born in Baltimore, Maryland, was an artist and graphic designer whose varied career background included work in many different industries in the U.S. and overseas to design children’s books, comics, giftware, toys and other products, and technology. In the promotional products field, along with working with industry companies on design projects, she also played a significant role in the founding of PromoKitchen, a volunteer-driven organization with a focus on uplifting the promotional products industry through education, mentorship and inspiration.
Writing on her passing, Mark Graham, president and chief brand officer of promotional products industry business and sales software provider commonsku, and a PromoKitchen “chef,” credited Hamilton with building PromoKitchen’s initial website, designing its logo, leading several of its initiatives and contributing a considerable amount of educational content to the platform. Graham wrote, “You spread the gospel of creativity to anyone who would listen in the promotional products industry. A lot of people did listen (many more than you knew). Your illustrations were gorgeous. Your designs were original and cutting edge. You were the exact opposite of the $10 vector artwork cleanup artist. You threw yourself into your work like a hurricane. And I found myself in the center of that hurricane on several occasions. It was a thrilling place to be. I can assure you that the promotional products industry is a more creative and aspirational place because of you.”
PromoKitchen is also in the process of putting together a Tee Hamilton Creative Education Scholarship, and collecting industry colleagues’ memories of Hamilton for an upcoming podcast. Click here to contribute.
“Tee was one of our industry’s most powerful creative voices,” says Danny Rosin, CAS, Brand Fuel co-president and a PromoKitchen chef. “She was the voice of ‘design mattering’ and battled to prove the value of creative work. Her branding and vision as a cofounder of PromoKitchen will ripple into many lives in our industry. She will be sorely missed.”
Hamilton is remembered for her kind heart and selfless nature, and her love of all-things Disney, Star Wars and Harry Potter. She was known for her thoughtful gifts, and her love of travel and spending time with family.
Hamilton is survived by her father and stepmother Denny and Patty Lutz, her mother Kathy Lee, her sister Denise Brantley and her niece Bella Sniadecki, and her beloved dog and companion Gracie, along with countless friends.
The family will be holding a private memorial service at Calvary Cemetery in Clearwater in early January 2021. There will be a larger celebration of life for extended family and friends in Destin in Spring 2021 with details forthcoming. In lieu of flowers, Hamilton’s family requests donations be sent in her name to Alaqua Animal Refuge.