#MAIPAlum Job Updates: November 2017

Congrats to all of our #MAIPAlum on their professional achievements in November 2017!

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New Jobs:

Leia Brown (2016)
Brand Coordinator, 72andSunny
Jineen Carcamo (2013)
Translation, Senior Strategy Analyst
Corina Carrizales (2016 & 2017)
Copywriter, REI
Kellie Chea (2017)
Production Coordinator, Hook Studios
Bria Cobb (2017)
Assistant Strategist, OMD
Toni Dawkins (2012 & 2013)
Strategist, Apple
Shawn Gadley (2014)
Senior Creative, FCB Global
Samuel Malave (2012)
AMP Development Associate, Spotify
Jesus Meza (2015)
Digital Team Lead, iProspect
Abraham Mosqueda (2014)
Performance Marketing Wrangler, Automattic
Jasmine Rogers (2013)
Project Director, Streetsense
Javon Scott (2017)
Assistant Social Media Planner, Ogilvy & Mather
Chelsea Spratling (2011)
Creative Writer, Intercom
Stephanie Valderrama (2016)
Designer, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Christopher Vega (2011)
Writer, Apple
Tanya Zhang (2015)
Senior Visual Designer and Consultant, EY


Fernando Agudelo (2013) 
Account Executive, Edelman
Gregory Hines-Garrison (2014)
Social Media Strategist, MRM/McCann
Christian Martinez (2015)
Account Executive, BBDO
Juwan Wedderburn (2015)
Strategist, 72&Sunny

As always, #MAIPItHappen.



Passion Projects: Jesus Meza

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"I refuse to be a product of my environment when I can make my environment a product of my actions."

This was the topic sentence to one of my college essays. This rings true to me at 25 as much as it did at 17. As a 1st generation Mexican American raised in poverty by a single mother I had this gut feeling that I had to get out ever since I can remember. After ending up on probation with HPD and facing a few other major setbacks, realized my only shot at it was education. Eventually received that acceptance letter to UT Austin that changed my life and I knew that when I came back to the Northside of Houston Texas it'd be to get others out.

At U.T. Austin I fell in love with the ad industry, but I continued to keep my community in the back of my mind.

Unfortunately the industry doesn't look very much like me, or attempt to represent a diverse cultural inheritance such as myself. As a mass communication vehicle that's being primarily driven by individuals who do not understand diversity; those of us who differ from the status quo, well we have our work cut out for us in order to improve diversity's representation in advertising. Outside of the data and strategy behind media, this cause was one of the reasons why I chose to pursue a career in advertising. I'd love to contribute to the changes in advertising to make this industry a better representation of the people who see our ads. 

I’d love to contribute to the changes in advertising to make this industry a better representation o the people who can see our ads.
— Jesus Meza (2015)

Whether it's through being a Big Brother for Big Brothers Big Sisters of NYC, or creating scholarships for kids in my high school, or setting up my ad agency's Community Service Day, personally hold myself accountable for breaking the cycles of oppression I see in my every day life. As young diverse individuals in the industry believe it's our responsibility to open doors, and at times take sledgehammers to glass ceilings. My goal as an Ad Man is to works towards diverse representation throughout my career, just as my goal outside my career is to serve as a voice for communities who's voices fall on deaf ears. 

8 months after started working in the industry in NYC, late Spring 2016, I decided I’d waited long enough. I started drafting an organizational plan and some by-law documents to establish a group which would give back to my community. Stubbornly moved forwarded for a few months attempting to create the foundation of this org, find mentors to lead me along the way, and recruit by myself.

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We all make errors, this was one of mine. Realized teamwork and delegation is the only way to reach the end goal, even if that means letting go of certain ideas or details in order to reach that goal. After obtaining a mass list of Sam Houston High School student emails from a major Houston scholarship donor; I reached out to hundreds of alumni from my alma mater hoping someone would share my vision. Luckily for me a few did.

This was the beginning of the Sam Houston High School Alumni Association. It took months, emails, phone call interviews, and a lot of Facebook to finally have a full Board of Directors. Although a few came and went; I’m extremely grateful for each BOD team member because without them this would continue to be a dream; they’re the ones that bring this to life. Since January 2017 until now we’ve worked as a team to register as a 501c3, hold community meetings for our paid alumni members, setup a bank account, create a logo, setup a members’ only discussion platform, hold multiple community service events as well as socials etc.

Our community is under-served in a variety of ways for a variety of reasons, however we have in our power a way to fill certain voids that will allow our community to be a community.
— Jesus Meza (2015)

Our community is under-served in a variety of ways for a variety of reasons, however we have in our power a way to fill certain voids that will allow our community to be a community. The end goal of all these actions is to pool our alumni’s resources to build a community around our high school which can provide scholarships to students, have an alumni mentorship program, and overall ensure we can all prosper.

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Unfortunately, our high school spent over two decades as the lowest performing high school in the state of Texas and for the majority of the last two decades, our incarceration rates have been higher than our graduation rates. This is not a sob story; this is a story which has been and continues to be perpetuated across cities all over America, however grassroots organizations such as ours are formed in order to enable following generations to reshape our story. My freshman class began with over 1100 and less than 500 graduated four years later.

This is not a sob story; this is a story which has been and continues to be perpetuated across cities all over America... Grassroots organizations such as ours are formed in order to enable following generations to reshape our story.
— Jesus Meza (2015)

Because of these kinds of statistics and the stigma they’ve placed on our school; we decided to take a stand to change this by giving students an opportunity to see a different path, and our alumni an opportunity to provide that path through our community.

We’re currently raising funds to provide two student scholarships as well as an alumni scholarship this upcoming May to ensure our kids prosper through education. From the bottom of our hearts, we appreciate any donations you can send to help us in this endeavor.

"Now let me suggest first that if we are to have peace on earth, our loyalties must become ecumenical rather than sectional. Our loyalties must transcend our race, our tribe, our class, and our nation; and this means we must develop a world perspective"- Martin Luther King



Passion Projects: Pima Mbwana


As The Co-Founder / Marketing Director / Partner at The Cut Buddy LLC I was tasked to take a product that never existed before and turn it into a product people need.

I created the strategy of how my team and I would position The Cut Buddy Hair Grooming Tool in the market. How I created the strategy was first I listened to the Inventor / Founder’s story (Joshua Esnard). It was in his story that I realized he used The Cut Buddy from age 13 (when he invented it) to age 28 (and further) to give himself confidence and self-esteem through a haircut. 

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A haircut is a personal statement about oneself. When a person has a fresh haircut he/she feels better about their self (personal self-esteem). This product and company The Cut Buddy LLC is here to provide people with confidence and self-esteem through a haircut. No matter the age, race, sex and/or sexual orientation, The Cut Buddy LLC strives for people to Look Good, Feel Great and Be Awesome.


The Cut Buddy recently pitched their company on ABC's Shark Tank, where they acquired funding with Draymond John, CEO and Founder of FUBU. 

Get your own MAIP alum-created Cut Buddy.



Passion Projects: Jake Quintanilla



Written by Jake Quintanilla for the 4A's MAIP

The Mi Casa Es Su Casa Network (MCESC) network is a non-profit organization founded by Multicultural Advertising Intern Program (MAIP) alumni dedicated to educate, celebrate and represent the latino and hispanic communities through the advertising, public relations, media and entertainment industries.

MCESC is launching the “Por La Gente” campaign to help affected areas and communities in Houston, TX, Puerto Rico, Mexico City, MX, Florida and the US Virgin Islands. The organization is seeking volunteers, sponsors and agencies to host an “Es Lit” happy hour. “Es Lit” is a happy hour event series where professionals are welcomed to engage with their colleagues the best way they know how, over drinks. Participating agencies and their employees will be invited to the “Por La Gente” benefit night event in New York City on December 5, 2017.


The benefit event will encourage members of the advertising, public relations, media and entertainment industries to embrace Latino culture and allow them to donate to “Por La Gente Support Fund,” a fundraising initiative established to provide monetary and supplies relief to communities affected by recent natural disasters, as well as beneficiaries of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA).

Companies and agencies interested in hosting an “Es Lit” happy hour, sponsorship opportunities or volunteering can contact Jake Quintanilla, President and Founder of MCESC, at or


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Alumni Spotlight: Haywood R. Watkins III

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Written by Haywood R. Watkins III for the 4A's MAIP


On August 30th , I received an e-mail from Dianne Parks, Bill Sharp’s daughter. Enclosed was a heartfelt congratulations and request to answer a few questions for the award’s site. The last query was, “What advice would you give your 17-year-old self?”

Hopeful black and well-intentioned white people held hands and sung Kumbaya. It was November 4th, 2008 and Barack Obama had just collected enough electoral college votes to safely be announced as the next president of the United States of America. Dr. King's dream had become a reality. America was now a post-racial society.

Unfortunately, Obama's jump shooting, Motown singing, swagger walking blackness did not end racism. Instead, it served, at the least, as a distress call to awaken the dormant hate that rested in the hearts of many Americans. This divide is once again rearing its head to rip the country in two. I wondered, “Will our industry follow?”

During the short span of my advertising career, I’ve witnessed ads that uplift as well as ads that disregard. And the latter is always met with disdain that screams across the web, “This wouldn’t have happened if there was a person of color in the room.” It’s a nice thought, but simply not true.

That thinking implies a world where marginalized communities need only to get a foot in the door to dismantle tone-deaf media. My retort is this, “What change can you create in the conference room if you are silenced in the lobby?”

The silencing does not arrive as a formal request. It comes in the announcement of a peer’s promotion or the awarding of work that doesn’t take the reality of others into account. Those on the fringe quickly adapt to survive and in the process, they edit away their differences with the hopes of being accepted.

I now fight the urge to edit, the want to be accepted, and the desire to belong where I know I’m not wanted because the hardships of my hue has given me strength. So, I sat down and wrote twenty words of advice to my younger self.

“When weary, seek your reflection and know this: Black skin is bonded to a body strong enough to carry it.”


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Passion Projects: Bria Benjamin


Written by Bria Benjamin for the 4A's MAIP

My name is Bria Benjamin, and I'm a graphic artist. In my professional life, I stick to graphic design. But, my personal passion is graphic art and illustrations. There, I can play with color and a certain softness that I am able to create. I consider my work political, but not in the same way as shirts that say "NASTY WOMAN" or posters that have "BLACK LIVES MATTER" on it a hundred times.


As a black woman, sometimes I just want to see myself in art that is, well, pretty; a woman holding a glass of wine as she peers out the window, rather than her fist up in protest. Yes, those portraits can be the same woman, but sometimes, even the fighter needs a break. Her existence and happiness is a form of resistance, too.

My work can be found at, and can be purchased on my society6 page.



4A's Face of Talent 2017 Re-Cap


4A's Face of Talent 2017 Re-Cap

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At The Face of Talent 2017, the 4A’s and MAIP team connected an unprecedented 209 MAIP fellows with over 250 advertising and media professionals and countless learning experiences. Throughout the week, fellows packed over 2,000 meal kits in three hours with CityMeals on Wheels and Omnicom Health Group, were introduced to five of Dentsu Aegis Network’s agencies at Agency Immersion Day, developed skills for their next challenge with DigitasLBi during the Leadership Development Forum, watched as Fellow Lisa Marie Rainford chose her future agency among Atlanta’s Advertising For Change program (congrats, Fitzgerald & Co.!) and were given an unparalleled welcome to our industry. During the luncheon, Dentsu Aegis Network committed to 25 fellows in #MAIP2018. We’re proud to call the MAIP Class of 2017 our newly minted #MAIPAlum and encouraged by the astounding support from our partner agencies. 


MAIPers to Watch: Bennett Bennett, Marianne Bellorín, Valerie Nguyen, Christopher Vega, Laura Linthicum, Candace Queen (shouts-out!)

Bill Sharp: Haywood R. Watkins III

Paragon Award: Pam Fujimoto, Dhane Scotti, Keith Yamashita, David Hernandez

MAIP Coach of the Year: Ingrid Patiño

Special thanks to our DJ: #MAIP2017 Alum Ebony Anderson-Brown


DigitasLBi Multicultural Scholarship: Alicia Harris

MAIP Summer Project: AdHaus (Team 3)

One Club Creative Fellow: Alexandra DeCespedes

Clarence Leroy Holte Fellow of the Year: John Paul Napleton

Gladiator Award: Singleton Beato 

Agency of the Year: Advertising for Change

Pantheon Award: Ed Frankel



Alumni Spotlight: Ronnie Dickerson-Stewart

Ronnie Dickerson Stewart: VP Talent Engagement & Inclusion, DigitasLBi NA

Ronnie Dickerson, 2004 MAIP Alum, 2010 Rising Star, and VP, Talent Engagement & Inclusion at Digitas, attributes her advertising foundation to MAIP. Ronnie has held cross-media strategy and investment roles on brands such as Morgan Stanley, Nintendo, and Toyota. In 2015 she founded a career navigation consultancy, The Dickerson Stewart Group, as a commitment to education, growth and development. Ronnie reaches back, helping the leaders of tomorrow grow and develop, via the MAIP Alumni Association, 4A’s IAAS Partnership, and ADCOLOR.

How did you get your start in MAIP?

I applied for MAIP junior year at Kentucky and got declined, so I went to Dillard’s and applied for a job selling shoes and planned to take a free internship. I was at a step show in Chicago and got a phone call from Tiffany R. Warren informing me that someone dropped out of MAIP and I was able to reapply. It was for a position at Starcom in Chicago so I reapplied and drafted a letter about why I was fortunate to work under Renetta McCann. I got the position and had an offer before I went back to school.

How has MAIP helped you?

We carry this hunger and desire to be in an industry where historically, we haven’t been allowed. MAIP provided the arms and legs in - they provided us a window when perhaps a door wasn’t offered for us.

What are some side projects you're working on?

I had a baby. Coaching, sponsoring, supporting. Shining a light on tools people already have to be really great in the industry. I want to be a resource for diverse folks to have that ally or coach on their side to celebrate their wins and help navigate the world. I’m a certified career management and executive coach at the Dickerson-Stewart Group. We offer free 20- minute sessions and an exhaustive list of products and resources. Between now and launch of #MAIP2017, MAIPers will get 25% off services using the code: MAIPfam. (One per customer and valid through June 5, 2017.)

What are some workplace wins that you're most proud of?

Starting my career in media but over the last 3 years, I’ve been evolving out of that. In 2015 I became the NA lead for talent at DigitasLBi. It positions me to empower others to make an impact just like me. It helps me be more able to create programming and to support programs like MAIP. I can advance those things that help others.

What are some key lessons you’ve learned since being in the industry?

Show up as a badass but don’t be an asshole. Bring your best authentic self. Know that you’re there to learn. You should always be in a position to receive that knowledge and make yourself better.

What would you tell your MAIP self now?

No need to buy out all the business suits in the business suit section. You’re supposed to be here. I started at an agency that invested in MAIP but when I walked into the room and didn’t see people like me, I had to remind myself that I’m supposed to be here. We want MAIPers to come into our agencies to change the dynamic. They have the fortunate and unfortunate opportunity to change the moment. 

Written by Tien Dang, Coordinator, Diversity and Inclusion Strategy, and Talent Development


I Am Allergic to Career Fairs


I Am Allergic to Career Fairs

August 12, 2014. 4As, MAIP, Face of Talent 2014 at Three Sixty, 10 Desbrosses St, New York, NY 10013. Photography by Margarita Corporan

August 12, 2014. 4As, MAIP, Face of Talent 2014 at Three Sixty, 10 Desbrosses St, New York, NY 10013. Photography by Margarita Corporan

Sweaty palms, bubbling stomach, rapid heart rate, and shortness of breath are all classic signs that I am getting too close to a career fair.  But, I've never told anyone of my illness. I just don't go to career fairs and maintain perfect health.  Unfortunately, as a 2014 MAIP intern, not going to the career fair was not an option; but I sure did try.  I cozied up in on a couch and proceeded to act like I was working.  Fellow MAIPers would walk by, sit, talk, but I never left my spot.  Until, I was caught.  My MAIP mentor walked by one too many times to see my lack of movement and stopped to ask me, "What are you doing?" I think my answer consisted of a series of excuses:

  • It's too crowded.
  • It's hot in there.
  • There are too many lines.
  • I'm researching the agencies.

Not one excuse flew by her.  The anticipation of her forcing me to go into the career fair took over and anxiety set in.  "What is this water filling in my eyes?" I could tell she saw it happening.  So, she hit me with a one-two combo to get me in the career fair.  She sat down and talked with me to calm my nerves and dry up that "weird eye watering" thing.  The, she physically dragged me into the career fair.  She pulled me right up to the mcgarrybowen table, introduced me, and left.  I aw left to swim with the sharks, and surprisingly, I swam laps around the fair.

I say this story to say, if you've got the heart and experience to help a person push past his/her nerves and into a career fair, you've got what it takes.  Become a MAIP mentor today by clicking here. 

Written by Kendra Croft, Jr. Copywriter @ RPA. 


The Face of Talent Week Kicks Off!


The Face of Talent Week Kicks Off!

After months of planning, The Face of Talent officially kicked off today with Final Project Presentations at Wieden+Kennedy and the Leadership Development Forum powered by McCann Worldgroup.

Fifteen cross-national teams have been working tirelessly this summer to compete in the annual MAIP summer project.  Partnering with Wieden+Kennedy, fellows were tasked to work on a Nike project.  To say they were excited is an understatement.   It's come down to four teams and the stakes are high.  The winning team will be announced at The Face of Talent Diversity Leadership Luncheon tomorrow. While we wait, check out some behind the scenes images below.

In the afternoon, fellows participated in the Leadership Development Forum powered by McCann Worldgroup and led by Carolyn Ou, MAIP Alum and Executive Leadership Coach at Sandbox Consulting.  The interactive workshop took fellows through a series of activities to learn how to get out of one's own way.  You know the age old saying, "You're your own worst enemy."  Well, our fellows learned how to fight (and occasionally) work with their "Gremlins" - fellows you know what we're referring to. 



"From NYC to Seattle - My MAIP Experience" by Mallory Jones






Mallory Jones
#MAIP2015 Fellow @ WONGDOODY

"When ‘incredible’ doesn’t even begin to sum up your internship experience, what else is there to say? That’s how I’m feeling right now as I start to come to terms with the fact that my time here in Seattle is coming to a close. WONGDOODY, the agency where I have been spending my MAIP experience, has treated me better than I could have ever hoped for. I was welcomed with open arms and immediately encouraged to dive in and work on important projects for some of their top clients. In a million years, I never would’ve imagined that they would allow me to participate in the business and culture of the agency to the degree that they have. I’ve never personally experienced what an internship in another field of business is like, but I feel as though most typical interns wouldn’t be able to say the same. 

For this incredible experience – and for giving me a real chance to have the career I have always imagined – I am completely indebted to MAIP. Without this program, the odds of me ever making it out to Seattle to meet the amazing people at WONGDOODY are slim to none; the odds of me being set up as well as I will be to enter the advertising world once I graduate with my M.B.A in the spring would be even slimmer. In my mind, I will undoubtedly owe whatever career I have that comes out of this experience to the entire 4A’s organization and the MAIP program. From the bottom of my heart, thank you for allowing me to be a part of this."

Check out some pictures from Mallory's experience below.



"My MAIP Experience" by Laura Gonzalez










Laura Gonzalez
#MAIP2015 Fellow @ Osborn Barr

"Winning the lottery is comparable to the rewards a student gains from participating in MAIP. Broadening my knowledge base is an eternal goal of mine, and I make sure to commit when a challenge presents.  

Prior to this internship, I did not know what media planning was or what media buyers do. My fearlessness allowed me to jump into a discipline that was foreign to me. Taking this risk has allowed me to see how much I enjoy the discipline. 

I embrace the art and rigor of analytical thinking and complex problem-solving. Immersing myself into media planning has allowed me to tap into these passions. Learning from the media team at Osborn Barr has allowed me to gain an insight into this world and witness firsthand how media planners are responsible for making sure the product touches the eyes, and ears of the masses.   

My perspective on time changed just weeks into my internship. I find myself intrigued with the focus demanded, the strategy, the relationships, the communication, the detail, the language, the meticulous planning and the challenge that comes with working in media planning. It is life-altering to be able to dive into a discipline and identify hours as minutes. 

Media planning is the heart of all the disciplines in advertising. Everything in this discipline revolves around a hypothesis that is supported through research, past campaign records and data. From shadowing my mentor and the media director, I have been able to fulfill my passion for learning beyond expectation. To say this experience has been life-changing is the least of all MAIP encompasses for me. I now have a new set of eyes, skills and a newly developed passion. This is my lottery award." 

Written by: Laura Gonzalez

Click here to view a recent post on Osborn Barr's blog about Laura.