Red Urban is a small
collective of mothership
Who, by sheer happenstance, landed on the same tiny island and set about building a new civilization based on the twin pillars of Cool Stuff and Good Times.
Christina Yu, Creative Director
Christina is a big thinker. And she proudly doesn’t show favouritism when it comes to media. She loves design, digital, and traditional advertising. Whatever it takes to get the job done. It’s this kind of thinking that has brought her success at agencies like Taxi, BBDO, and Lowe Roche, which was named Agency of the Year by Marketing Magazine just two years after she joined as Creative Director.
Steve Carli, El Presidente
Steve is a strategic planner by trade. He’s been studying what makes people do what they do for 25 years. And he’s put his findings to use at agencies like Roche Macaulay, which was named Ad Age’s International Agency of the Year during his tenure, and Hadrian’s Wall, the creative boutique agency he co-founded in Chicago. Now his job is to help put Red Urban on the map.
Caroline Kilgour, Director of Client Services
Caroline got her start in politics. But we forgive her. Since joining Red Urban in 2010, her considerable experience in digital, planning, automotive, and retail has been put to good use. When she’s not building brands or soothsaying clients, Caroline can be found floating in a canoe in the Georgian Bay.
Nicole Milette, Director, Digital Strategy & Social Media
Nicole brings with her a diverse background. Starting in online production, she quickly moved into account services and online strategy. A true lover of all things built with 1’s and 0’s, Nicole’s role at Red Urban is to make our digital initiatives and strategy extra awesome.
Andrea Hull, Producer
Andrea is a serial dabbler. She has dabbled in the veterinary arts, print production, heavy metal, and most recently - advertising. But since joining Red Urban Andrea has finally found her true calling: getting stuff done. And we adore her for it.
Damian Simev, Creative
Damian hails from a little town called Skopje, in good ol' Macedonia. Cast out of his native land for refusing to eat meat, Damian set off to Canada to pursue vegetarianism – and advertising. And now that he's landed at Red Urban, he fully intends on making his mark. A curious observer and multi-talented Art Director, Damian is often spotted with a notebook in hand and a smile across his face.
Jon Taylor, Creative
Jon won the art award for his high school class and has never looked back. Well, except for when he ran with the bulls in Pamplona. Oh, and when he was youth security on cruise ships in the Caribbean, he was always having to watch his back. But now that he's at Red Urban, we've got Jon's back. And he's got ours.
Sonia Ruckemann, Account Supervisor
Sonia got her advertising training the way most of us do: as the Assistant Manager of a Swiss hotel. So, not only does she have exceptional taste in chocolate and a real knack for telling time, she also gets things done efficiently, precisely and excellently. If you get a chance, ask her to yodel. She loves that.
Liam Johnstone, Creative
A graduate of OCAD, Liam is a bit of a design fiend. And his work makes it clear: He loves what he does. A world traveler and a patron of the arts, Liam recently spent time teaching design classes in Rome. No big deal. Endowed with a keen eye and a knack for solving problems, Liam looks to play a big role in shaping Red Urban’s future success.
Matt Syberg-Olsen, Creative
Calm, cool and collected, Matt’s what you’d call a “savvy veteran.” He’s the first one in, in the morning, and the last one out, at night. And when he puts his head down to work, the job gets done right. That’s why it’s no small wonder, that after 16 years in the biz, he’s been on the receiving end of numerous awards, both nationally and internationally. Matt brings to Red Urban, experience, and an uncanny eye for the good idea.
Lance Kowlessar, Account Executive
Lance spent his formative years in Vancouver before heading for the bright lights of the T-dot. And while he’s seemingly easy-going, when push comes to shove, he’s all business. A music fanatic and a pasta lover, he also knows how to enjoy the finer things in life. And ladies, if Lance sounds like the total package, there's a reason for that: he is.
Chris Whyte, Community Cultivation Manager
At six foot five, Chris is the office giant that tweets. Having started his social media career in the music biz, Chris helped shape the careers of everyone from teenyboppers to hardcore rappers, in 140 words or less. Whether he’s telling stories, cultivating brands, or making the perfect pulled pork sandwich, Chris brings passion and enthusiasm to everything he does. And now that he’s joined the ranks of Red Urban, we’re all better off for it.
Keith Barry, Director, Strategy & Development
What happens to child television commercial actors when they grow up? Rehab for some. And a life of advertising for others. With Sega and Juicy Fruit acting gigs under his belt, Keith left the ad world, only briefly, for an Industrial Design degree at OCAD. But his self-imposed exodus didn’t take. A creative guy with a strategic mind, Keith returned in an accounts services role to help build brands like Audi, Volkswagen and PepsiCO, to name a few. Most recently, Keith returned from NYC where he worked on a Super Bowl spot for Motorola, among other things. Born with a gift for the gab and a love for all things advertising, Keith is an invaluable asset to the team.
Dianne Kim, Senior Account Executive
Dianne Kim grew up in Scarlem (aka Scarborough), Ontario, listening to New Kids on the Block and hanging tough. Today, she still shares that same love for NKOTB, but she’s also into other stuff, too, like dancing, photography and keeping up with Swedish fashion bloggers. And while she’s got a tendency to tear up when watching sappy TV ads, don’t be fooled – Dianne is still one tough Account Executive. After having spent the last year at Lowe Roche, it feels real good to have her on our side. If only for the added street cred.
Kathy Lee, Account Executive
Though Kathy loves to travel to far away places, she has a tendency to get lost. Even with a GPS. But when it comes to advertising, she’s always been on point. In fact, it’s her strong passion for branding and strategic planning that led her right to her first advertising gig in Dubai. There, in the midst of the desert, she got her feet wet, working on German cars like BMW, Audi and VW, before moving on to Lowe Roche and Red Urban. A lover of wine, food and instagram photography, Kathy is a cultural gal with a great sense of humour. Just don’t call her Kathy Lee Gifford and think you’re the first. She doesn’t take too kindly to that.
Brad Kumar, Studio Manager
If you ever wondered what it means to be “Zen”, watch Brad at work. With over 15 years in advertising and print production, it’s safe to say that he knows a thing or two about a thing or two. He’s a Mac artist, typographer, re-toucher, studio manager, IT administrator and a software troubleshooter. And, he’s worked in big agencies on big accounts like Audi, Telus and Stella Artois. A calming influence in a not-so-calm industry, Brad’s a force of good in the advertising world.
Patrick Shing, Creative
With over 50 pairs of shoes and 20 pairs of vintage sunglasses in his possession, some might call Patrick a hoarder. We just prefer to call him, Patrick. As a young buck, he left the hustle bustle of Hong Kong and headed west for the hustle bustle of Toronto. It was there that he found a life in advertising. An Art Director with a penchant for art directing his own hair, Patrick has worked at many of the top shops in Canada such as BBDO, John St., Lowe Roche and MacLaren McCann. Having hoarded experience along the way, Patrick now calls Red Urban his home. And with style, grace and a cool, well-cropped head, he’s a welcome addition to the family.
Sarah DiDomenico, Creative
Tennis camp champ, decorated public speaker and class valedictorian, Sarah grew up making it rain awards. So it only made sense for her to keep the good times rolling by getting into the ad game. She attended OCAD, where she earned a Bachelor of Design degree, before pulling a 180 and becoming a copywriter. And a good one at that. Prior to Red Urban, Sarah did her thing at Crispin Porter + Bogusky and Sid Lee, working on clients like IKEA, Sobeys, SXSW and Comic Com. Half Italian, half Polish, and fully committed to the cause, Sarah’s greatest thrills come from big ideas, tasty meatballs, and her Boston Terrier, Olive.
Matt Baggley, Senior Account Executive
Matt fears nothing in this world. Nothing at all. Except cats. And the musical by the same name—it freaks him out. But his fear of felines doesn’t make him any less of a lion in the ad world. He first cut his teeth working in experiential marketing. After getting a taste for the business, he moved into the digital realm at Proximity. And, now that he’s all grown up and well-rounded, it’s only fitting that he’s found a home at a fully integrated agency like Red Urban. A lover of scotch, wing-tipped shoes and fine cigars, Matt’s poised to make his presence felt.
Mary Claire Barlow, Creative Resource Manager
An avid reader, gardener and Frisbee toss-er, Mary Claire is proof that a television-free upbringing actually has its benefits. In fact, it was her love for reading that first led her to the book-publishing world. From there, she heard about this thing called advertising and got hooked. With gigs at Cossette and Northern Lights District under her belt, Mary Claire comes to Red Urban with ridiculously effective project management skills, exceptional attention to detail and the creative mind necessary to make great work happen.
Beatrice Recio, Senior Account Executive
If you grew up watching Melrose Place like it was your job and, later in life, actually made advertising your job, is it considered self-fulfilling prophecy? Well, that’s the story of Beatrice Recio. Raised in Hong Kong and the Philippines, Beatrice attended McGill University, in Montreal, before delving into the advertising world. Her first job was at Twist Image. There she gained experience, before taking the next step and moving to Taxi. But just like a young Heather Locklear, she knew she was destined for greater things. Naturally, that meant a move to Red Urban.
Tyler A. Smith, Creative
Tyler enjoys drawing on bananas, collecting illustrations of long obsolete machines and daydreaming about floating in space. In other words, he sees things differently than most. And that’s kind of why we like him so much. Not to mention, he also happens to be one hell of a designer. An educated guy with a background in everything from English and Art to Photography and Design, he’ll also be heading to NYC this fall for a Masters in Branding from the School of Visual Arts. For all these reasons, and because he’s spotted the elusive white squirrel of Trinity Bellwoods Park, not once, but twice, we say, “welcome to the team.”
Terri Vegso, Integrated Producer
They say you can take the girl out of the country, but you can’t take the country out of the girl. Believe that. Hailing from a small town near London (Ontario, not the “real” one), Terri brings her hard working, good-natured personality to Production, and makes everyone at the agency better for it. Never one to take “no” for an answer, Terri’s a graceful problem-solver in a job that doesn’t always present graceful problems. A first-class spinner, body pumper and dedicated yoga practitioner, Terri believes in working out to enjoy the finer things in life - like cupcakes. Needless to say, we like her style.
Alicia Outschoorn, Creative
Born in the ‘burbs, Alicia was forced to entertain herself. So she drew. And drew. And drew some more. One time she even drew on the dining room chairs. And while her parents may not have been too thrilled then, surely they were when she graduated from OCAD with a design degree and an advertising thesis good enough to be presented in front of her peers, teachers and a panel of judges. In fact, her thesis was so good, we snapped her up. Freakishly organized and multi-talented, Alicia understands advertising, well beyond her years. When she’s not thinking and drawing up ideas, you can find her reading graphic novels and eating chocolate chip cookies.
Sam Leirsch, Digital Producer
Lock up your lip balm, ladies and gentlemen. This Fergus, Ontario native is a confessed addict. But please, before you cast judgment, take a moment to get to know her first. See, Sam’s the kind of person that looks out for others, including animals. In fact, to date, she’s taken in three animal rescues, and has no intention of stopping. When it comes to her own well being, once again, she impresses. A CrossFit and Yoga maven, Sam recently completed the tremendously difficult, Tough Mudder challenge. Aside from all these reasons, our love for Sam is simple: She’s one of the most creative Project Managers we’ve ever come across. So while the lip balm thing is weird, we’re willing to go ahead and overlook it.
Sam Brightling, Account Director
Yes, it’s true. Sam’s got a weird thing for wine gums. It freaks Lance out. But we’re cool with it. Everyone’s got something. Raised in Toronto, Sam graduated from Sir Wilfred Laurier with a Communications Studies degree and a bad case of the travel bug. Her only cure was a stint in England and Australia, where she took up work in various marketing-related roles. Upon her return, she helped build brands like the LCBO, Stolichnaya Vodka and the SickKids Foundation. An avid tennis player and marathon runner, Sam knows how to get results. In fact, it’s precisely her drive and determination that makes her such a valuable asset to our team. The fact that she’s infatuated with wine in gummy form is really just the icing on the cake.
Cooper Evoy, Creative
Firstly, Cooper is his first name and not his last. Secondly, though he grew up on a farm with horses and donkeys, he’d like you to know that he never actually rode them much. The son of a successful musician, Cooper can play guitar. But take our word for it; he’s a better writer. After completing a Bachelor of Arts degree from Queens University, teaching English in South Korea, and studying advertising at Humber, his Copywriting skills landed him an internship in Vancouver. But all that fresh air and mountain scenery took its toll on young Cooper. He needed skyscrapers. Concrete. Gridlock. He needed Red Urban. With his talent, we were happy to oblige.
Kayla Christenson, Account Coordinator
Kayla spent the better part of her time at the University of Guelph, studying rats and their brains on drugs. And while, in theory, that may seem awesome, it got a bit old. So, upon graduating with a Psychology degree, Kayla freed herself from the yoke of her lab coat and took up a new psychological profession: Advertising. Free at last, Kayla landed an internship, where her love of organization, grammar and office stationary did not go unnoticed. When Kayla’s not making everyone jealous of her work ethic, she enjoys kicking it with her cat, music festivals and the occasional cross-Canada road-trip.
Amanda Braun, Studio Artist
Amanda was 18 when she left her family’s cattle farm in small town, Manitoba and headed east for the Big Smoke. After all, what was a vegan to do? Upon arrival, she took up hosting her own radio show and wrote a weekly column for her local paper. With great journalistic ambitions, she decided to study Professional Writing in university. It just made sense. Not like that time she took part in the largest-ever gathering of Librarians to perform the “hustle”. But, just as life has a weird way of gathering Librarians to do the “hustle”, it also drew her out of journalism and into the Production side of advertising. And while she may be many miles from home, we’re very happy she’s part of our family here at Red Urban.
Jennifer Rossini, Creative
There are a few things you got to know about Jenn. For starters, she has the biggest blonde hair in the business. And she never seems to wear the same clothes twice (how M.C. Hammer of her). When she was a kid, she wanted to be a sports writer. Luckily for us, it didn’t pan out. Winner of multiple advertising awards at home and abroad, Jenn possesses a love for reading, a Wikipedia-esque mind and a writing-style unto herself. Motivated by her daily mission to disprove the theory that women aren’t funny, Jenn’s all about making people laugh and doing a little laughing of her own. And by a little, we mean a lot.
William Chong, Digital Developer
Central Mississauga / born and raised / in the basement playing video games / is where he spent most of his days (anyone remember the Fresh Prince?). Will’s initial interest in movies, photography and design eventually led to hardcore development, motion graphics and video editing. Having worked at places like Lowe Roche and Taxi, he’s managed a name for himself in just a few short years. When he’s not making magic on the computer, you can find him glued to the TV, watching his beloved Raptors try to make some magic of their own.
Jesse Langille, Interaction Designer
Jesse has come a long way. And now he’s back where he started. Literally. Our offices are just a couple blocks from where he grew up. With degrees from U of T and George Brown under his belt, he has learned many things in his time. For example, he knows how to design websites that people actually enjoy using. And that’s no small feat. In his spare time, he also studied dance, and then decided to teach those who couldn’t. What’s more, he discovered his passion for the arts, falling in love with cinematic masterpieces like “Wayne’s World”, and the timeless musical stylings of R. Kelly. Possessing an insatiable appetite for learning and tons of talent, Jesse’s just the kind of guy we look for around here.
Ricardo Peters, Senior Developer
Born in Trinidad & Tobago, Ricardo is easily the best soccer player in the office. And with a wealth of experience, he also happens to be our best Technical Developer, too. Some of that experience comes from his time as a Senior PHP Developer at Syncapse, and from running his own company, Genutier. When Ricardo isn’t solving complicated development problems at work, he likes to solve them in his free time, participating in hackathons that can last from a full day to an entire weekend. Some people just work with code. Others, like Ricardo, live by it.
Nicole Arruda, Production Assistant
Nicole leads a busy life. She’s only twenty-two, and she’s already broken into the business, carved herself a niche in Production and rescued two dogs. Respect. She’s also an avid reader, Game of Thrones worshipper and consumer of all things “Buzzfeed”. To clear her head, she likes to take to the open road and cycle. And when that doesn’t do the trick, she heads to her favourite getaway, the Dominican Republic. Proudly Portuguese and full of passion, Nicole takes Production at Red Urban to the next level.