- Monday, Jun. 1, 2015
The One Club (www.oneclub.org), producers of Creative Week and the prestigious One Show Awards, announced the formalization of “Creative Residency,” a program developed in collaboration with BBDO New York that provides multicultural students and young professionals with a yearlong residency at BBDO’s New York office.
The program was first fielded in BBDO New York during the latter part of 2014/early 2015. It involved the hiring of five young “creative talents” tapped by BBDO from The One Club’s diversity initiatives: the Creative Boot Camp, a series of intensive workshops that introduces multicultural students to advertising and design, and Here Are All the Black People, a career fair for emerging and aspiring creatives of diverse backgrounds, whose program includes inspiring talks, panel discussions, creative pitches and portfolio reviews.
“We’ve been thinking about lack of diversity and its complexities for a long time,” said JD Michaels, EVP and Director of Diversity & Creative Engineering at BBDO NY. “When we created this program, we asked ourselves, ‘What better way to get young people involved in our business then to actually come work for it. Could it be this easy?’ At least in our corner of the world, yes, it is.”
Following a three-week orientation period, five residents assumed junior creative positions and were assigned to account teams.
“We’re committed to this for two reasons,” said David Lubars, Chief Creative Officer, BBDO Worldwide. “One, it’s frickin’ embarrassing how un-diverse the industry still is, enough already. Two, BBDO needs brilliant talent and these kids are fantastically talented."
“There’s a lot of talk about the need to address the lack of diversity in our industry, but it’s academic until you actually do something,” said Traecy Smith, Director of Diversity at The One Club. “BBDO is putting its money where its mouth is. We are grateful for their support, initiative and for the leadership at BBDO, especially David Lubars, who posed a call-to-action for the residency during a panel at last year’s Here Are All the Black People, essentially creating the program onstage.”
The inaugural Creative Residents selected are as follows:
► Sheue-Fang Lee: She is a native of Malaysia, a product of Queens College, a three-time Creative Boot Camp participant and a passionate designer and art director.
► Shayne Alexander: Raised on the island of St. Vincent, Shayne is a photography enthusiast. His eye is on art direction.
► Bennett D. Bennett: Bennett is a copywriter and helped develop AdByte, powered by Google, a one-day immersion for multicultural professionals in ad technologies.
► Kayla Robinson: Kayla recently graduated from The University of Texas in Austin with a major in advertising and art direction. She co-founded Minorities in Advertising.
► Chris Vega: Chris is a Stanford graduate and a copywriter. When not working, he produces music and writes stories.
“I believe that one of most pivotal assets in life is to never stop learning. By working among some of the most talented people in the advertising industry, I continually grow and learn as a young creative. That’s valuable,” said Shayne Alexander, Art Director at BBDO New York and one of the program’s inaugural Creative Residents.
The next class of Creative Residents will start in January of 2016. BBDO New York is currently searching for next year’s Creative Residents and will be vetting candidates at Here Are All the Black People, taking place in New York on September 29th.
About The One Club
The One Club, producer of the prestigious One Show and Creative Week, is the world's foremost non-profit organization recognizing creative excellence in advertising and design. The One Show honors the best work across all disciplines, including Advertising, Interactive, Design and Branded Entertainment. Creative Week takes place in New York City every May and is the preeminent festival celebrating the intersection of advertising and the arts.