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Title: Head of Creative, Copy
Company: Triple Threat Communications
Education: BA, Philosophy, Loyola University; MFA, Creative Writing, Emerson College
Family: Wife, Ashley; children, Michael, Julia, and Will
Hobbies: Running, reading, listening to and playing classical music
From strategy to concept to tactics, Jeff Perino’s talents as a creative expert are clear to everyone he works with — colleagues and clients alike. The words “can do” sum Mr. Perino up perfectly.
A true leader at Triple Threat Communications he sets the tone for how the teams work together, with the ultimate goal of going above and beyond for all clients — large and small. Always striving for creative excellence, Mr. Perino has no problem doing whatever it takes to make sure the work the team delivers is the best it can be, no matter the time or budget constraints set.
As head of creative, copy, Mr. Perino absorbs and interprets input and direction to produce creative executions that are beyond expectations.
Mr. Perino says every big creative assignment that comes in remains a challenge, and even after 20 years in the business he still fights that blank white page “writer’s block” paralysis.
“But here’s what I’ve learned: Just put a thought down — a word, a sentence, whatever,” he says. “It doesn’t need to be the ‘big’ idea. Just start connecting your smaller ideas, and the bigger idea will come.”
Communicating the client-focused, “un-agency” philosophy of Triple Threat Communications is one of his major accomplishments. Whether he is creating advertising or Websites or being interviewed for articles, he has consistently articulated what the company stands for in a credible, creative, and engaging manner.
Being involved in jumpstarting startup companies remains a career highlight for Mr. Perino, who says it’s too easy to stay in a silo in big agencies.
“In a smaller agency, it’s important to push every day to figure out what’s possible and find the resources. And that’s where the personal growth and satisfaction come in,” he says.
His passion for the industry and creative assignments remain unchanged, and he wants to keep finding ways to be creative inside the industry’s narrow parameters and to remain excited about doing so. The challenge, he believes, is to make sure he and his colleagues keep moving brands forward.
“Brands are living things,” he says. “It’s easy to get mired in the every day tasks and lose sight of the bigger picture. Being part of an agency means pushing on the boundaries; that’s how breakthroughs are possible.”
His energy and work ethic never cease to amaze his colleagues, who say he responds with positivity to any seemingly impossible request and motivates the team to pull off yet another miracle.
“Doubt is a killer,” he says. “We must tamp down negativity. Find a positive way to get your toes in the water, then wade, then swim. That’s how you cross the river. You need to get past the negatives to see the possible.”
Work is never dull for Mr. Perino, who says being in the life-sciences industry means being a perennial student.
“With ever-changing therapeutic advances and technologies to consider, the work is never boring,” he says. “Marketers need to make sure all the messages connect across audiences.”
He provides a smooth style of leadership and support. His collaborative touch and project control come across as tactful and effortless. He is open and welcoming to ideas and input, encouraging his writers and art directors to push through complacency in what is already considered great work.
With a spirit and energy that are contagious, Mr. Perino’s attention to detail sets a high standard for the agency.
Rather than looking for credit for creative, he gives accolades and thanks to his team. He enriches the lives of those around him with energy, humility, intelligence, and a creative spirit.
Mr. Perino says because Triple Threat hires very experienced people his mentoring role is more about shaping ideas and making sure all ideas and voices are heard and are strategically sound.
“I do love those times when I get to help people out and watch them turn a corner; it’s incredibly satisfying,” he says.
He says his father, who was a pharmacist by trade and joined the Upjohn Company as a rep early in his career, helped him to see what can be achieved in the pharma industry.
A renaissance man, Mr. Perino is the picture of discipline and dedication to his family, to his career, to his teams, to his calling in life.
“It’s important to always make room to do something you love,” he says. “Creativity comes from living. And one kind of creativity begets another.”
Title: Executive VP, Creative Director
Education: BA, English, Rowan University;
MS, Teaching, Rowan University
Family: Husband, Nick; children, Sammy, Jolene, and Susanna
Hobbies: Gardening, hiking, biking, reading
Bucket List: World travel
Awards/Honors: Med Ad News Manny Awards — Best Professional Ad, Most Creative Agency; PM360 Awards — Best Professional Sales Aid, Elite Winner Creative Director;
MM&M Awards — Best Professional Print Ad, Small Healthcare Agency of the Year
Relentless Pursuit of Excellence
The process is as important as the final product, and the results are more important than the awards. Laurie Bartolomeo understands that good advertising is all about the work. She does not put much credence into momentary flashes of creative brilliance or the practice of dishing out without digging in.
Ms. Bartolomeo knows that the answers come when you search for them, and this can only happen by examining a challenge from every scientific, strategic, and creative angle. Watching her work is like witnessing an artist handcraft a finished product. Every strategy is built on her intuitive vision, every campaign has been polished with her flair for detail, and every headline has been borne from hours of careful construction. She sets a high standard for her entire team by continuously staying focused on identifying insights that will help inform amazing creative executions.
Ms. Bartolomeo has shaped an entire generation of pharmaceutical advertisers, and her influence has had a ripple effect on colleagues, clients, doctors, and patients.
Among her significant accomplishments at Dudnyk is the way she has helped shape the strategic approach to creative work. She has always maintained the importance of having strategy and creative work hand in hand from the beginning of brand building. Even when it was not standard policy, she involved herself in strategic development and pushed to deliver a focused strategy that the creative team could use to develop concepts and messages.
She has a unique ability to distill a product down to its core benefit, and her vision has completely transformed the way the agency approaches positioning and brand promises. Colleagues recognize just how critical her voice is in helping the team shape the most effective positioning possible. Her perseverance paved the road for collaborative brand building at every step, which has become standard practice at Dudnyk.
Intuitive and persistent, Ms. Bartolomeo knows what works for a brand and she works tirelessly to bring great ideas to life.
With a goal to never stop creating, Ms. Bartolomeo would like to be remembered as someone who is able to derive meaningful insights and positioning and then turn those into powerful brand campaigns.
Ms. Bartolomeo is not afraid to speak her mind or challenge those around her. If she truly believes in something, she is confident enough not to take no for an answer. She will continue to suggest her idea with eloquence and disarming charm until she either wears down the naysayer or is certain her input has truly been considered. At the same time, she asserts herself in a genuine way. Colleagues say the fact is, she is almost always right.
Without a doubt, the group of people who benefit most from her influence are those in her own creative department, who have thrived under her guidance and leadership. She creates an environment for innovation by setting a clear direction for moving forward.
One of her strongest contributions to the company has been her mentoring and coaching. She has always felt compelled to teach, which would explain why she left advertising after a few years to pursue a master’s degree in education.
After spending three years as a high school English teacher, she realized she missed the challenge and excitement of marketing, and she came back to Dudnyk. But she has remained a teacher at heart. She makes a genuine effort to identify strengths in her colleagues, and thinks outside the box to help these individuals grow.
While Ms. Bartolomeo pays particular attention to mentoring the future leaders of the company, she has also had a profound influence on those who work alongside her. And she draws inspiration from her colleagues, particularly Mike Brune, Bernadette Foy, Drew Desjardins, Chris Tobias, and John Kemble, her co-director for the past 10 years, who is always pushing to make ideas stronger and more differentiated.
She inspires her colleagues by thinking both strategically and creatively and helping others see the intersection of the two.
“I refuse to accept the status quo,” she says. “If I feel there is a better way to accomplish something, I will push to get us there.”
The biggest challenge, she believes, is the disintegration of creative strategy. The constant interruptions — emails, texts, etc. — constrain innovation, she believes, noting that in order to generate true innovative thinking, it’s important to set aside time to focus on the problems.
Ms. Bartolomeo gives so many colleagues, patients, and brands a voice. She invokes a sense of trust and assurance. Clients relax when they know their brands are in her capable hands, and the relationships she has built with them have lasted years.
Her colleagues also know that her perseverance is a direct reflection of the passion she feels for her work. There is no ego. There is only the desire to do the right thing by the client, the company, and the consumers.
Edward Nathan, Ph.D.
Title: Executive VP, Chief Creative Officer
Education: BA, Wesleyan University; AM, Indiana University; Ph.D., MA, Harvard University
Family: Wife, Sonia; daughters Phoebe and Maya; brothers Daniel and David; mother Rhoda
Hobbies: Crossword puzzles
Bucket List: Become conversational in a second language; write a long-form piece outside of marketing
Edward Nathan, Ph.D., executive VP, chief creative officer at PulseCx had barely settled in to his new position before colleagues recognized that his passion has made a significant difference across many aspects of the agency, from client-level thinking about brands to executive-level decisions. According to his new colleagues, Dr. Nathan truly reflects the company’s culture of collaboration, teamwork, and accountability.
Coworkers say he has become an engaged partner from day 1 with every department within the agency and has helped integrate the agency from research, to strategy, to multichannel execution. He is driving innovative thinking by pulling developers and programmers into creative brainstorm sessions, juxtaposing different skillsets and mindsets into each situation, making the experiences the agency creates more engaging, more on target, and delivering more value and response than ever before.
Dr. Nathan brings years of experience in primary care and specialty brands to the healthcare marketing agency. He has developed strategy, creative concepts, and campaigns for target audiences through direct-to-consumer and direct-to-provider campaigns as well as professional and payer communications. Dr. Nathan, previously managing director at Razorfish Health and chief creative officer at Saatchi & Saatchi Wellness, has been a dynamic force in the healthcare industry for several decades.
A storyteller at heart, he truly understands the need for the industry to evolve from feature/benefit selling to customer experience marketing.
His impact has been felt through his leadership style, mentorship, and skill at growing the thinking and drive of the people around him.
One of Dr. Nathan’s true passions is uncovering insights associated with driving the behavior of anyone involved in a health and wellness interaction, understanding their hopes and fears, and translating these emotions into narratives that motivate and reassure them. These insights are the “why behind their why,” he says, rarely volunteered initially by customers, but key to their engagement and behavioral change.
A firm believer in mentoring, he has a special passion for working with young executives — the millennial generation who are just starting out their careers. He creates a safe and comfortable environment for them to explore in, giving them the freedom of many different avenues to find out what they love and what they’re good at.
He supports colleagues without judgment, challenges with respect, and inspires by pushing thinking to draw out another’s brilliance. Dr. Nathan is an exceptionally smart man, however, he never makes others feel lesser, but rather elegantly enables them to discover their own wisdom. He has been known to hold “what’s up?” bi-weekly sessions where he invites people to acknowledge and celebrate “wins” with the group. He facilitates these storytelling sessions in a way that allows people to acknowledge their success, a team success, or the success of others, while also drawing out insights that underscore the learning from the success.
To keep his teams motivated, he encourages them to look at an issue from all sides. He drives people to see their work in unfamiliar ways. He tells colleagues that “strangeness can be liberating.”
Dr. Nathan has impacted many brands as well, by persuading them to try a storytelling method for messaging, rather than the more traditional one-dimensional style. He effectively challenged brands to understand the value of storytelling and, what is now commonplace, developing a brand narrative. For example, when oncologists needed to understand the role that unacknowledged age bias played in reducing their likelihood to intervene in patients who wanted a more aggressive approach, he helped them hear their voices in an unfamiliar way.
These examples represent what the industry needs most in a marketer today; a creative thinker who strives to stay one step ahead. He consistently inspires individuals, brands, and companies to uncover unexpected opportunities that, ultimately, help the industry do what it strives for: to improve human health. (PV)