Creative Director | R/GA

Sue’s been passionately telling stories for well over a decade. As Creative Director at R/GA Chicago, her goal is to continue to find and craft the most compelling stories with purpose for all her clients. At R/GA she launched PepsiCo’s bubbly sparkling water, which quickly overtook the category leader. Her previous work on “Groceries Not Guns” for Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America and Ovarian Cancer Canada are examples of how she has pushed social cause brands to create distinct and celebrated voices, while also generating their most effective work to date. Recognized as one of Adweek’s Top Creative 100 , Sue believes that the best is yet to come in our industry as we move towards more inclusion, diversity, and a whole lot of collaboration.


1.)       What was your very first job? 

I worked at a dry cleaners around the corner from my house. It taught me that if you bring good ideas to the table, you’ll succeed. By summer of my last year in high school, I was managing multiple locations.

2.)        Please describe, in your own words, what your job is and what work it entails. 

Creative direction is about bringing out the best in your creative department. To keep pushing the work and developing the creatives’ skills. So that one day, they don’t need you anymore.

3.)        How did you discover that the creative world was right for you? Was there a time in your life that you credit to this discovery? What was there train of events that brought you to where you are today? 

I was working at the Embassy of Japan, well on my way to a career in Foreign Affairs. But the creative side of me felt neglected. I knew if I didn’t give it a try,  I would never be satisfied. So I quit my job, moved to Toronto, enrolled in a post-grad Copywriting program, and here I am today.

4.)        In your constantly growing and expanding industry, how do you find inspiration to keep your work fresh, innovative and relevant? 

People inspire me. Being honest has always inspired me. Finding what makes people laugh, afraid, what they really feel. These things may change with the times, but they’re also universal. Finding that we’re more alike than we think and using that to make work that does good is why I’m still in the game.

5.)        If you had to pick one piece of work or project that you are most proud of, more for the creative work and innovation it required, rather than its recognition or industry “success,” what would it be? 

So many people hated the campaign I did for ovarian cancer. But it started a public dialogue about the stigma around women’s “lady” parts. And it got women and men talking about ovaries. That secrecy was exactly what was leading to so much misdiagnosis.

6.)       Which creative disciplines do you commission most, and are most interested in seeing more of and why? (ie photo, film, social, experiential, vr, etc)

I’m always looking for work that helps people. With technology today and how we live, it’s more about ideas that fit into their lives than telling them what to think or how to act. So any idea that lives out a brand’s purpose is right, regardless of the discipline.


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