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We bring brands to life by making them relevant and wanted. We do that with ideas that cut through the noise, creatively solve problems and bridge the gap between a brand’s promise and the consumer experience...despite the impression our size sets. We built Stack a little different. We love collaboration, hate silos and understand the best work impacts more than sales—it evokes an emotion that moves people to think or act.

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James Pelz

Founder, Creative Partner

James has over 25 years of experience in the marketing and advertising industry, but he’s defined by much more than that.

Professional Career Highlight: Partnering with Royal Caribbean to work on Clues to the Cruise. So much content needed to engage and promote the newest, and largest, cruise ships ever. Honored and just…wow.

 

Personal Career Highlight: Mentoring young advertising professionals. I’m a firm believer you should always send the elevator back down.

 

Favorite Taco: Torchy’s Republican. It’s a taco, with a sausage. The tacos are simple in concept, surprising in content and funny as hell. Love them.

 

Creative Style: Bold and expressive campaigns that move people.

 

Industry Pet Peeve: Agencies, partners and consultants who offer solutions without first asking questions. How can you fix a problem if it’s not fully understood first?

 

Best Advice to Clients: Magic bullets don’t exist. I wish they did because we’d offer them. But the truth is you need to put in the work. I know because I’ve been putting it in for decades. It isn’t easy but doesn’t have to be hard.

 

Biggest Fear: Zombies that run fast. Absolutely terrifying. Absolutely not ready for that.

 

Favorite Campaign: The "We love our house, but..." campaign from Geico Insurance. They work to pitch an easy benefit but capture your attention with engaging juxtaposition. The spots are simple in concept, surprising in content and funny as hell. Love them.

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David Pahl

Founder, Creative Partner

With over 25 years of photography and production experience, David has seen it all and photographed most of it.

Most Memorable Photoshoot: Can’t disclose but I was worried about being arrested. Brings new meaning to the words “Gorilla Advertising"

 

Advice to Amateur Photographers: Get closer and take more.

Favorite Lunch: Grilled Smoked Turkey Sandwich from Free State Brewery in Lawrence KS. Not on the menu for a couple decades but they still will make it if you ask.

Best Piece of Career Advice Ever Received: A little fear or uncomfortableness can be a Wonderfull motivator.

 

Most Invaluable Piece of Gear: It's all replaceable but I really do miss a polaroid and cropping Ls.

 

Favorite Photoshoot Location Ever: 11,000 acer cattle ranch you could watch the sunset over Monterey Bay.

The Beatles or the Stones: Beatles- nothing but happy memories for me used to listen to them every morning before school. Walked out the door to the bus stop singing Beatles tunes. Good Day Sunshine!

First Job: Forecaddie. Don’t know what that is? Most people don’t either. Most boring job looking for golfers errant tee shots.

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Carlton Bonilla

Director of Strategy and Growth

A marketing and sales professional with a successful track record of creating and implementing growth programs. 

Best Advice to Clients: Develop trust with your agency. Not asking for that trust right out the door but be open and select a team you can comfortably work and grow with. The right agency’s first priority is helping you, not generating revenue. To do that, they need to understand you, your business, what you want to accomplish.

 

Most Underrated Marketing Tactic: Strategy! It’s not a tactic but without a clear one, you’re just wasting time, budget, resources. And, this gets back to that best advice…trust. Strategy drives the best results, but takes time, planning, and hard, genuine, joint thinking.  It’s worth it.

Hardest Part of your job: Earning trust to really support a client. It takes time and with a strong background in sales, people frequently think I’m a transaction based, used-car salesman. To be successful, and have clients return over and over again is earned through trust and that ain’t easy.

Guilty Pleasure: To wake up early on a Saturday, get in the saddle as the sun rises over Denver, pound out hours of great gravel cycling, eat and take a nap. All before my teenager wakes up!

 

Best Professional Compliment Paid: “Because Carlton is not a big personality, it's sometimes hard to understand how he ended up in sales. He comes across much more analytical and visionary than is typical for business development folks. Had I met Carlton outside of work, I would not have pegged him for BD. Maybe that's a good thing, actually....”

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