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Jennifer Merio - CV

Education + Experience

1994 - 1998

Alberta College of Art and Design // Visual Communications, Diploma



Alberta College of Art and Design // School of Communication, Degree: BDes


May 2013 - Present

Catalyst Creates //
Brand Strategist, Creative Director,  Independant Consultant

Storytelling strategies and solutions, to help businesses become successful brands. Strategy, copyrighting, client communication, front-end creative development and design. 
• Client-based problem-solving though story: strategic brand design, management, implementation, marketing, content creation, and outreach. 
• Brand management: from name creation through logo design, print and traditional collateral design, and ongoing consultation. 
• Website front end UX strategy, and creative direction. 
• Pitch deck and outreach communications 
• Account management, client relations, creative budget planning and implementation 
• Contractor recruiting, creative direction, and overall talent management

January 2012 - Present

Instructor //
School of Design, Alberta University for the Arts

In addition to instructing in-person and online classes, actively involved in planning course direction, chaining, course content development, establishing learning outcomes, industry collaboration, school retreats, specialized workshops, and key support for Student Exhibitions and Portfolio Shows. 
• High School/First Year: Pre-college Prep, Design Fundamentals 
• Second Year: Typography I, Typography II, Communication Design I & II, Design Technology 
• Third Year: Time Based Design, Typography III 
• Fourth Year: Advanced Information Design, Advanced Graphic Design – Branding

September 2020 - Present

Instructor //
University of Calgary

Online development, and delivery of an asynchronous course. Content and presentations designed from the ground up, based on existing the previous year’s Course Outline. Feedback and discussions spring-boarded and monitored in online forums. Fostering of online peer collaboration. Fair and consistent evaluation. Key learning deliverables include: 
• Develop student’s understanding of typography in relation to expressive text and image- based content, through the functional and formal properties of type. 
• Investigating an understanding of format, hierarchy, legibility, clarity and type as the carrier of meaning. Discovery of the important roles that shape, size, and personality of type play in good design, and how it leads to effective communication. 
• Anatomy, typeface classifications, terminology, history, hierarchy, basic introduction to the grid, for the effective execution of letterform-based design.

July 2015 - Present

Marketing Director //
StoryBook Theatre Society

Blending a passion for performing arts with brand development, brought onboard to elevate Canada’s largest semi-professional theatre company for young audience’s public image. Responsibilities include: 
• Website redesign, content creation and creative direction
• Writing, and distribution of press releases, media contact, and public relations 
• Development of marketing and promotional materials, advertising campaigns, event publicity, website content development, contribute to social media 
• Season Consulting, Overall Theme Development, Poster Design and Illustration, Photo Shoot Art Direction, Advertising, in-house and out-of home materials design, since the 40th Season in 2015

July 2015 - Present

Producer, Casting Director, Troupe Lead // Smoking Gun Entertainment

Began as a contracted troupe cast member of an improv Murder Mystery Performance Group. Since 2018, promoted to the role of producing, casting, and client liaison for Calgary and area shows. 
• Casting live entertainment for audiences of 15 – 250 people, from a troupe of 50+ actors. 
• Positively represent the company, key client contact before, during, and after the show. 
• Hosting duties, event Master of Ceremonies, and troupe lead during improv-based live events, and on-site performances.

Oct 2012 - Jan 2013

Account Supervisor //
Trigger Communication & Design

Short-term contract. Calgary-based marketing, advertising and interactive media firm with a customer-focused approach to creative solutions. 
• Develop strategy briefs, creative briefs. 
• Grow client relationships, manage the day-to-day deliverables of projects. 
• Communication and coordination of internal creative teams, ensuring all executions exceeds client expectations, and delivers strategic and business goals. 
• Client budget control and revenue responsibilities.

Mar 2012 - Oct 2012

Client Partner // 
Evans Hunt Group

 Focused on strategic planning and execution in the digital space. 
• Client services: operated as the internal key stakeholder in knowing the client’s business, addressing questions, concerns, and communication needs throughout the project. 
• Liaison to the internal team, ensured creative executions met business objectives. 
• Provided strategic insights: identified business objectives, supported organic growth, account planning. 
• Responded to Request for Proposals (RFPs): customized and designed the agency’s credentials deck and case studies, according to proposal requirements, writing targeted content as needed. 
• Developed project and creative briefs, estimates and scope of work, workback schedules. 
• Defined priorities, identified key milestones, and risk management. 
• Clients included market leaders in the Home Building Industry, Oil and Gas, the Arts, the Energy Sector, Software Engineering, and Calgary’s Economic Development. 
• Directly contributed to writing and design of new business proposals for top industry organizations, from non-profit to housing, economic development, and oil and gas.

September 2007 - February 2012

Director of Brand //
Triple Flip Inc.

Began with Triple Flip, an activewear retail and teamwear clothing company for tween and teen girls, in 2005 while working at Impello Inc, as Brand Strategist and Creative Lead. Responsible for creating the corporate identity, and core company messaging. Joined Triple Flip full-time in 2007, and continued beyond 2012 as a Brand Consultant. 

A brief summary of experience includes:

• Brand strategy creation, implementation and engagement

• Brand design of logo, wordmark, tagline and all supporting corporate materials

• Growing, mentoring and leading an ever-growing creative team

• Advised and assisted in opening new retail locations across Canada

• Sourced and maintained relationships with local, national and international suppliers, including printers, web developers, photographers, and fabricators

• PR relations, press kits, grassroots events

• Design and implementation of brand storytelling across all paid/earned/owend media channels

• Event director of in-store and out-of-home experiences, including a runway experience for Toronto Fashion Week

• Launch and ongoing support of the Triple Flip ecommerce site: UX, content creation, creative executions including in-studio photography and design. Hired and managed a team of programmers for back-end tools, SEO, and sales fulfillment. 

• Grew online presence to fulfill multi-million dollars of customer purchases. 

• Launched the company’s social marketing initiative, exploring different channels, and advertising opportunities. Lead the team that grew Triple Flip’s Facebook presence to over 25,000 fans. Regularly engaged with fans to create raving brand advocates. 

2004 – 2006

Account Director //
Impello Inc

Worked mainly in Client Relations, Marketing and Brand Strategy with local, national, and international companies. Responsibilities included: 
• Allocated team resources, identified priorities, set tasks, deadlines, and lead meetings to ensure projects were completed on-budget, and on-time, while maintaining creative integrity 
• Grew the business through new opportunities, and nurtured existing client relationships 
• Lead presentations of creative artwork to articulate design direction, collected feedback, managed client expectations 
• Writing of targeted marketing messages for print and online communications, contributing Art Director

2002 – 2004

Freelance Art Director
// Jennifer Croteau Creative Services

Contracted with a wide variety of clients, and design studios, including Calgary’s Venture Communications, TBWA, Parallel Communications, Trigger. Created the brand experience for Joe Stiff’s Spiked Root Beer and Whipped Orange alcoholic coolers, distributed by Big Rock Brewery. Highlights of the Joe Stiff’s project included: 
• Product name development, logo, packaging, advertising, and creative direction of a series of award-winning posters (Applied Arts Design & Advertising Annual 2003) 
• Co-development of the Strategic Plan, launched the brand into Ontario, promoted the product throughout Western Canada, both in nightclubs, and in retail locations 
• Brainstormed, developed, managed, and executed interactive on-site PR events 
• Lead a team of web production artists, created and launched Joe Stiff’s internal corporate website, and an award-winning, interactive

2000 - 2002

Art Director //
Idea Machine

Developed a myriad of local, national and international campaigns through print collateral, advertising, promotional brochures, newsletters, television, and web projects. Clients included local Alberta corporations, as well as Kellogg’s, Coca-Cola, Telus, Big Rock, Calgary International Film Festival, and Access Communications.

1998 - 2000

Graphic Designer //
Cheryl Starr Design Group

Developed a strong, clean design esthetic, and solid, practical skills in fostering client relationships. Collaborated, designed and executed a variety of traditional media projects, which included corporate identity, direct mailers, print & outdoor advertising, newsletters, annuals, and promotional collateral.

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