Dare Vancouver gets busy

The agency has announced over a dozen moves, including a new VP, ACDs and director of client services.

Dare’s Vancouver office has announced two new hires and it’s finally gone public with 10 more hires and promotions made in the fall.

Derek Shorkey, SVP and managing partner at Dare Vancouver, says the moves come from a combination of organic growth at the agency, success around its brand relaunch for Destination BC and new clients that include software company SAP, western Canadian auto dealer group GoAuto and a third client that will be announced soon.

Shorkey also says Dare is preparing to announce a new digital production lead in the near future, with the digital capabilities the agency was built on being a priority going forward.

“Those [capabilities] hadn’t waned, exactly, but this growth has given us an opportunity to reinvest in them and put a bit of a refocus on them,” he says.

Leading the hires is Mathew Stockton, who is returning to Canada as the agency’s director of client services. Stockton’s duties will be similar to those of Jonathan Longworth, Dare’s former VP, client integration, who left the agency for 123w in September.

Stockton joins Dare Vancouver after three years as global brand director for Geometry Global in London, U.K. He also held senior positions at Saatchi & Saatchi X, JWT and Publicis in London, and spent much of the 1990s working for agencies in Ontario, including Prism Communications, Ogilvy & Mather and Thomas Watt Cohen McColl. Stockton also worked in Russia, where he first met Shorkey, who was then CEO of Publicis Russia.

Kaya Wiggens has also been hired as group account director, returning agency side after working as director of marketing and business development at architecture firm Henriquez Partners Architects and senior brand manager at the British Columbia Lottery Corporation (BCLC). Prior to that, Wiggens spent six years working for the Vancouver office of Dare’s fellow Vision7 agency Cossette and was present when the shop restructured in November 2010 to form Dare Vancouver. She will oversee the business for Destination BC, BC Children’s Hospital Foundation and her former employers at the BCLC.

Dare Vancouver has also formally announced several hires and promotions from last fall. On the creative side, Dare hired art director Darcy Twarog from Taxi Vancouver and the creative team of copywriter Greg Kieltyka and art director Jacob Gauthier, who joined from MacLaren McCann Vancouver. All three joined the agency in November. It also announced that senior art director Todd Takahashi and copywriter David Giovando (the team behind the agency’s brand relaunch for Destination BC) are now associate creative directors after being promoted in September. The pair joined the agency in the summer of 2013 after more than three years at Rethink.

On accounts, Wiggens joins Chris Kleiter, who was hired as group account director in September on the MTS account from Saskatoon-based design agency Kinetic Design, where he was account services director and partner. Also on the account side, Pia Campbell was hired as an account manager in October, joining from The Brand Agency in Australia.

Catherine Piercy, who first joined Cossette’s former branding and design division Identica in 2006 and joined Dare following the restructuring, added VP to her planning director role in October. Laurel Ledohowski, who joined in 2013 and has worked account side at Leo Burnett and Y&R, has been promoted to account director. Tiffany Kwong, who joined as account coordinator in 2011, was promoted to account manager in September.

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