I'm an engineer who recently became a member of a county Grand Jury in California. For those who don't know what that means, it's a body of 19 people who - for a year - have the responsibility to investigate various aspects of the county and the cities and special districts, etc., in the county. The object of an investigation is to create a report containing research, findings, recommendations and such which is then provided to the entity or entities mentioned in the report who then must respond. The set of all reports during the year is then included in the full report of the Grand Jury.
OK, that's the background. In reading past reports (which are online) I have found pretty much all of them to be profoundly uninteresting as far as layout and design are concerned. What I expect has occurred in the past is some juror starts using Microsoft Word pretty much straight out of the box with no eye towards the niceties of layout and design - probably due to not having any background (or, in my case, talent) for layout and design.
I do, however, understand the need of separating layout and design from content - something Microsoft Word doesn't do well. I admit I have no particular skill at graphic design but would still like to produce a product at the end of our service which not only has properly formatted citations, an index, good typography and excellent content, but which also looks good. Can anyone offer advice as to where I might find help along these lines? That is, is there (for example) a Graphic Design class that might wish to give us a design (and get it published by the County) that I can use? I don't know that I have any actual budget for this but someone might want to do it for the publicity.
Is there a significant possibility that I might succeed in getting some help?