Thank you so much for joining us! Can you tell us a story about what brought you to this specific career path?
It’s great to be here! When I was a very young child my father said I should go to Hollywood and make movies. Perhaps he repeated that line to me during my adolescence, never as a core subject, but as an inspirational thought. It was probably more directed at himself than any practical advice to me… Almost something one would tell a younger self if they had a chance.
There are many stories on the path of how I got here — to Los Angeles, working in entertainment, partnering with the best studios, brands and talent on fun projects (reaching millions of people in doing so) — but I wonder sometimes how this one impacted it all.
Can you tell us a story about the hard times that you faced when you first started your journey?
So many to choose from! One story I recall is the reason I carry a Discover Card in my wallet today. I’ve been the butt of many jokes on the occasions when a friend has heard me ask a waiter if I could use my Discover card… I guess the Discover card carrying community is small.
Back in the mid-nineties I left my corporate job with USA Networks / Sci-Fi channel to partner with my best friend on one of the first digital entertainment studios ever that created Whirlgirl, a flash animated weekly episodic sci-fi webshow. We had great success for a time, we partnered with Showtime networks (who put millions of dollars of promotion against our show — including billboards over Times Square and Sunset Strip), MTV Networks and others. When the ‘Internet bubble’ busted and our inability to raise funds were exhausted we had to close shop. I was personally financially BROKE!
I had an interview, however, for a dream job at rising cable net star Comedy Central to launch their interactive sales group. On the day of the big interview I realized that the shoes I had were shoddy to the point that no shine would mask it and they wouldn’t reflect the image I had hoped to portray.
Ran to the store, picked out the shoes for my interview and at the time of payment my Amex was rejected…“no problem” I said and handed the cashier my Mastercard. Rejected. “How did I get so low?!” I said to myself.
I happened to have a Discover Card.. handed it over as a last hope and YES! Thank you Discover.. New shoes, new confidence ACCEPTED.
Long story short, I aced the interview and spent the following seven years building that business AND still carry my Discover Card.