On pace for a record number of clients in 2017, automotive advertising giant JKR Advertising & Marketing announced the hiring of Jeff Dilley to the newly created position of Chief Operations Officer. The appointment was made by JKR Managing Partner Jeff Johnson and is effective immediately.
“The opportunity to join a thriving, growing company like JKR in the role of COO doesn’t come along very often,” Dilley said. “I am grateful to the owners of the agency and look forward to being a trusted resource for the employees of all departments at JKR.”
Dilley’s responsibilities will include being in charge of the day-to-day operations of JKR and its subsidiary companies.
For the past three months, Dilley was a consultant at JKR through the RVR Consulting Group. He also spent 15 years in an executive role at The Golf Channel, where he was part of the initial team that helped launch the network in the mid-1990s.
“The need for a Chief Operations Officer became increasingly apparent over the past few years as our organization has continued to expand,” Johnson said. “The appointment of Jeff Dilley to this position will help ensure we have the proper managerial framework in place both today and well into the future. We’ve been very pleased with the job he has done in his short time with us and look forward to the positive contribution he will make in his permanent role.”
JKR Automotive Advertising continues to grow, necessitating additions to our Client Services Department over the past year. Today’s blog profiles our newest employees in that department.
Tara Wally: Tara is in just her sixth month at JKR but has already proven to be a skillful negotiator, putting together the most cost-conscious buys available for her clients. She has more than 10 years of experience as a media buyer, much of it in the clinical research field. “I always want to do a great job for the clients, no matter the task,” she says.
When she isn’t working, there’s a good chance you’ll find Tara doing something sports-related. She is a Florida State University grad who’s into softball and volleyball; and an avid diver who went shark diving in Honduras on just her second certified dive. She and her boyfriend have been together for 12 years and have two cats and “the cutest dog ever”.
Kris VanSpeybroeck: After an ad agency internship and graduation from the University of Central Florida, Kris came aboard last year as an Account Coordinator. His many tasks include ensuring media outlets are running the agreed-upon advertisements, building budgets, running annual budget reports and constructing new client presentation books.
“When it comes down to it, I will stay until the job is done,” Kris says. “It doesn’t matter how long it takes.” He is a self-professed Star Wars fanatic who enjoys traveling to as many states as possible. His relentless work ethic carries over outside of work, as evidenced by the fact that he once completed a grueling 52.4-mile Ultra Marathon.
Christopher Veiga: Chris’ eye for detail serves him well in his role as Account Coordinator. Prior to starting at JKR, he was an intern at Universal Orlando in the Travel Industry Sales Department. “The experience with keeping track of budgets and researching markets prepared me to work at JKR,” said Chris, a graduate of the University of Central Florida.
A fringe benefit of working at Universal is the opportunity to meet notable celebrities, and Chris’ list includes Wayne Brady, Shaquille O’Neal, Robin Thicke and Stan Lee. Chris is always looking to expand his knowledge base, which he does by taking online classes in his spare time; and he describes himself as a “sci-fi junkie and frequent moviegoer”.
To meet and exceed the needs of JKR’s ever-increasing client roster, our agency has responded in recent months by making a number of key hires. Our two newest graphics department employees, Jeremy Chandler and Abie Silva, are welcome additions to our staff.
Jeremy Chandler, Graphics Director: Jeremy came to us from SeaWorld Parks and Resorts Orlando, where he served in corporate marketing as the only graphic designer on staff. “My job at SeaWorld got me used to meeting tight deadlines, which serves me well here,” Jeremy said. “I find working at JKR to be very interesting because of the niche market it occupies in the advertising world.”
He takes a great deal of pride in his “best supporting role” of producing Web graphics, newspaper ads, newsletters, billboards, and other print and online marketing materials. “Without a print and Internet presence to supplement our TV commercials and radio spots, some campaigns would not have the same amount of success. These days, many people get a great deal of their information either through the Internet or in printed form,” he explained.
Jeremy possesses an Associate of Science degree in Recording Arts from Full Sail University, as well as a Multimedia Graphic Technical Certificate from Valencia Community College. In his spare time, he looks for opportunities to continue honing his skills via conventions and Web classes.
Abie Silva, Motion Graphics Designer: When JKR decided to expand its motion graphics department, Abie was one of the first interviewees. It didn’t take long to realize there was a perfect match between agency and candidate. “My background is in automotive, so I already knew about the industry,” Abie said. “I was really excited to learn about JKR, and once I found out I got the job I couldn’t wait to get started.”
JKR’s clients appreciate the way Abie does his job. “I’m very passionate and meticulous about what I do,” he explained. “I look at each production and make it as wonderful and unique as possible. We believe our clients deserve a lot more than ‘just another car commercial’ … and that’s a big part of what will continue to separate JKR from everyone else in the future.”
Abie received his Bachelor of Fine Arts in Computer Animation from the Miami International University of Art & Design, and he puts it to good use at our agency. “I know how to convey our clients’ messages through animation,” he explained. “This is my niche, and I know it well.”
When JKR grows this much, its employee roster follows suit. To that end, we introduce you to a pair of new employees who frequently interact directly with our clients in a number of very important ways. Please join us in welcoming Donna Fuller and Yolanda Pagan to the JKR family!
Donna Fuller: While Donna’s everyday job is Account Executive, there really isn’t much she isn’t capable of doing. She’s also a talented copywriter, project manager and creative marketing resource, so she’s able to jump in with both feet and help her coworkers when they need assistance. “I have four years of experience working directly with car dealers, so the environment here at JKR isn’t new to me,” Donna explained.
Prior to her foray in the automotive field, Donna worked in several fundraising positions; one of which was with the New Orleans Ballet Association. “I started in the automotive industry by chance, but it falls in line perfectly with what I like to do,” she said. “I enjoy doing things that allow others to be successful, and helping our clients reach their goals is very rewarding.”
Donna grew up in Orlando and returned home four years ago to be closer to her family. She is the proud mother of three kids, ages 12 to 17. Over the course of her life, Donna has lived in Florida, New York, North Carolina, South Carolina, Washington, D.C., Missouri, Louisiana and Georgia.
Yolanda Pagan: As a media buyer, Yolanda’s role is an instrumental one. “I have the responsibility of finding the most efficient vehicles to invest my clients’ budgets,” she said. “By keeping up with media trends … what’s working best in each market and for each dealer … I can prepare an effective media plan. That will translate into great traffic and sales for them.”
During her first advertising agency internship in Puerto Rico, she found her calling. “Contrary to most people studying communications, I love numbers,” Yolanda explained. “I actually asked them to place me in the media department. I wanted to learn what it meant to be a media professional. Once I got there, I knew I had found my spot in the advertising world.”
Yolanda and her husband of five years have a three-year-old son named Leonardo. “He is the light of the house and he keeps us on our toes,” Yolanda says. She’s a media buyer by day, Disney cast member by night; since 2004 she has been a seasonal Disney entertainment performer.
With significant growth comes significant new employment opportunities, and we are pleased to announce the hiring of three new Billing Coordinators! On the heels of JKR’s best year ever in 2014 – and our best first quarter ever in 2015 – we’ll be announcing the hiring of quite a few new employees in the coming weeks. So without further delay, let’s introduce you to our three new billing coordinators.
Our Three New Billing Coordinators
Sarah Pendleton: Prior to joining us at JKR, Sarah was an Accounting Clerk, Webmaster and Marketing Assistant for a retail store, where she worked for nearly three years. She’s enjoying her new environment at JKR, which is quite a change. “Coming from a small retail background, JKR is a very exciting workplace,” she says. “There’s always something new going on, and we’re constantly challenged to keep learning and growing with the company. The billing and accounting departments are the backbone of the company that makes the front end run seamlessly.”
Sarah graduated from UCF in 2009 with a Bachelor of Arts in Technical Communications. She’s also a newlywed, having been married to her husband, Cory, last December. Together, the couple has “a clowder of cats.” (If you don’t know what that means, look it up!)
Christina Bowers: Christina’s unique background assists her in numerous ways as she interacts with all the “creative people” here at JKR. After spending her freshman year at USF in Tampa, she graduated from UCF with a major in Communications, Social & Behavioral Science, and a Minor in Nonprofit Management. See … what did we tell you; perfect, right! Prior to working at JKR, she gained experience working as the Director and Social Media Coordinator of a med spa.
“The billing department is very detail-oriented, and it requires great responsibility,” she says of her work. “It really reflects our reliability and reputation as a company.” When she’s not at work, Christina is training to be a yoga teacher. What would people be surprised to learn about her? “Three things,” she says. “I paint murals, I sing in a band, and I’m a cancer survivor!”
Trevor Brown: Trevor is a recent graduate of the University of Florida, and this is his first full-time job. However, he gained extensive experience at his college internships – with one being particularly helpful. “I interned at a company called Blezoo Promotional Products,” Trevor said. “I helped with new business development, creative strategies and campaign executions. I walked away from that internship knowing much more about entrepreneurship, start-ups and advertising in general.”
Trevor met his girlfriend, Kelsey, way back in 10th grade when they were still in high school. Since then they’ve gone to Europe on a six-month college study trip. They’ve even conquered the long-distance relationship thing, staying together even while graduating from different universities. Since graduation they’ve both moved back to Orlando, where they share custody of an “extremely hyper English Springer Spaniel” named Oscar.