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Thomas Phinney


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Public bio

Thomas Phinney is the president of ATypI, a type designer and font forensics specialist, who has created fonts for Adobe and Google. He is also involved in the business of type, having been product manager for fonts at Adobe and Extensis, and CEO of FontLab. He has four patents, an MS in printing/typography from RIT, and an MBA from UC Berkeley. Phinney did his Master’s thesis on “Extreme Form Change in Multiple Master Fonts,” a precursor to variable font technology. He designed Adobe Original typeface Hypatia Sans, and his team’s open-source typeface Science Gothic is a 4-axis variable font commissioned by Google Fonts. With Vassil Kateliev, he created and maintains a 4-axis variable font version of Google’s Material Design icons, the public version of which has over 2000 icons, and is called Material Symbols. Phinney has been on the board of ATypI from 2004–2020, and 2023–present, currently as president (but has also served as VP, treasurer, and secretary). Phinney serves on ATypI’s governance, finance and conference program committees. Phinney views being an ATypI board member as a way to serve the typographic community, in appreciation for a career he loves.