Promax’s Thrive program is a year-long program designed to assist executives as they grow in their careers to higher-level leadership positions. The program includes a week-long intensive during which all of the participants come together and then continues throughout the year with mentoring, coaching and self- and peer-evaluation. Thrive culminates with the participants developing and presenting sessions at Promax’s annual conference in June.
This year, Thrive’s cohort is comprised of 18 talented creatives (below). The program’s week-long intensive kicked off Tuesday, Oct. 15, at Calamigos Ranch in Malibu.
Josh Baird is director of audience development at Turner Broadcasting where he leads social for TNT and TBS brands as well as all unscripted programming for both networks. He got his start on the agency side, creating experiential and digital marketing campaigns for brands such as Microsoft, Nestle and Victoria’s Secret. He then oversaw social media and activiations for Fuel TV and Fox Sports before joining Turner.
Roderick Beltran is creative director, branded content for BET in New York, overseeing on-air brand creative and branded content executions, while managing a team of junior and senior writer/producers, creating buzz-worthy content on social, digital and linear TV, covering scripted series, movies and unscripted. He’s previously worked for USA Network and Comedy Central.
Matt Blanock is director of creative services and marketing at Fox Sports where he leads and oversees a creative team that develops high-concept campaigns, promos and digital executions. Prior to joining Fox Sports in 2016, he was executive producer at Tegna Media where he was responsible for the creation of a live, interactive, multi-platform daily news series. Prior to that, he was co-executive producer of Fox’s syndication magazine, Dish Nation. He’s also produced thousands of on-air promos for such shows as Warner Bros.’ The Ellen DeGeneres Show, CBS’ The Talk and Disney’s Live with Kelly and won Promax awards for campaigns for NBC’s 2010 and 2012 Olympics.
Jacqui Busséy is creative director at AMC Network in New York where she works with her team to collaborate on creative and marketing for such series as The Walking Dead. Prior to joining AMC, she was executive producer at HBO, charged with launching multichannel brand campaigns for such series as Boardwalk Empire, The Pacific, John Adams and Game of Thrones. She started her career as a creative assistant in advertising and progressed to producer. She made the jump to promotion when she was recommended to HBO by a director with whom she had worked.
Ulises Chang is executive producer at Univision Network, where he works with artists, management and record labels to produce live awards shows for U.S. Hispanic audiences. Prior to that, he spent nearly two decades working in local broadcast journalism. He graduated from Florida International University with a bachelor’s degree in communications and journalism.
Diana Dixon is founder and chief executive creative director at Los Angeles-based Dixon creative agency. She founded Dixon in 2008 to connect creatives with brands, tell stories, and create uncompromising content.
Jessica Gaitan is creative director at Disney-ABC Television Group in Los Angeles with more than twelve years of marketing experience. She’s spearheaded campaigns for American Idol, TGIT, and ABC Funny. She won a Promax award for her work on ABC’s multi-platform campaign for season 19 of Dancing with the Stars. She’s also an active member of Women at Disney.
Danielle Jothan is senior director, Turner Brand Experience, leading a team of production managers and visual communicators responsible for graphically expressing Turner’s brand identity through consumer, partner and employee experiences. In 2015, Jotham was part of the team that led the global implementation of Turner’s only rebrand in its 45-year history. She is based in Atlanta and reports to Michael Tatum, senior vice president of Turner Brand Experience. She has been with Turner since 2002 as presentation producer.
Matt Kehrli is executive creative director with Turner Studios. In that role, he led the creation and launch of production company 10th Street Productions within Turner Studios. There, he oversees content creation for Turner’s entire portfolio of brands including TBS, TNT, Cartoon Network, Adult Swim, CNN, Headline News, truTV, Turner Classic Movies and Turner Sports. Major showcases for those brands are CES, Cannes, bi-annual meetings of the Television Critics Association and the annual advertising upfronts in New York.
Anna McDonald is creative director of brand creative at Viacom’s MTV/VH1/Logo, where she leads creative teams of writers and editors working together on innovative multi-platform show launches. During her time at Viacom she has created award-winning and fan-favorite campaigns for shows such as Teen Wolf, Jersey Shore, and Martha & Snoop’s Potluck Dinner Party. The North Carolina native recently relocated to Los Angeles from New York City.
Chuck Moore is senior creative director of brand creative for Turner Classic Movies, leading development and execution of all video promotional content for on-air, digital and social media. He also guides brand execution across all platforms. He was a key contributor to the network’s “Let’s Movie” brand campaign as well as the launch of the network’s FilmStruck streaming service targeting cinephiles.
Joyeux Noel is executive producer at MTV, VH1 and CMT, overseeing tentpole campaigns, brand/social impact initiatives and priority series launches. She started at Viacom in 2010, leading brand creative production for Logo. Prior to joining Viacom, she worked in longform non-fiction and documentary production.
Kristen Senese is associate creative director in truTV’s multiplatform video creative department, a title she has held since last year. She started at truTV in 2014 as senior writer/producer focusing on integrated marketing content. Later, her duties expanded to include on-air and social promotional video content for series and brand campaigns. Prior to joining truTV, she spent seven years at VH1, Logo, VH1 Classic and Centric. She joined Lifetime in 2012 as writer/producer.
Katie Shesh is creative director, Nickelodeon and Viacom creative marketing and consumer products. She joined Nickelodeon as a production assistant 13 years ago after graduating from Boston College. She did a stint at LogoTV from 2011-14 and returned to Nickelodeon in 2014 as executive producer for TeenNick. She moved to Viacom’s corporate content team two years ago. She graduated from New York’s New School with a masters degree in media studies in 2015.
Jordan Shorthouse is creative director at Turner Sports, overseeing sports print marketing and on-air broadcast graphics departments supporting all telecasts. He has been at Turner Sports since 1999 overseeing print and on-air campaigns for Turner’s tent-pole events including NBA on TNT (regular season, playoffs, All-Star), MLB on TBS (regular season, postseason), the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championship, ELEAGUE, UEFA, and the PGA Championship. He is a three-time Emmy winner and was recently named one of CableFax’s most influential minorities in cable.
Mary Traina is creative director at A&E in New York where she’s led campaigns for two of the network’s biggest unscripted hits: Leah Remini: Scientology and the Aftermath and Live PD. Prior to joining A&E, she was a writer, producer and editor at Syfy. She’s also written a book, The Twenty Something Guide to Getting It Together and has been published in New York Magazine, Refinery 29, Huffington Post and Hello Giggles. She’s also won Clio, Golden Trailer and Promax awards.
Neal Weisenberg has been art director at Disney Channel for the past decade. His career started in Chicago where he worked for two network-owned stations, including CBS’s WBBM Chicago, where he and his team won several Promax Station Summit Awards (then called the BDA North America Design Awards competition). Before that, he worked for ABC’s WLS Chicago for 11 years. Besides many Promax awards, Weisenberg also has won six Emmys and serves on the TV Academy’s Title Design committee. For the past four years, he’s served as an adjunct professor at UCLA teaching graphic design for broadcast.
Brian Ziskind is creative director, brand creative at Comedy Central where he leads 360 creative campaigns for new and existing franchises. Most recently, he led the launch campaigns for Crank Yankers, The Other Two and Alternatino, as well as various Comedy Central Stand-Up campaigns. His claim to fame is that he once directed Jerry Seinfeld for exactly five minutes.