Shawn King joins Civilized as ECD

The former chief creative at Arrivals + Departures will help develop the cannabis platform's brand.

Civilized publisher Derek Riedle (left) with new ECD Shawn King.

Cannabis lifestyle platform Civilized has hired Shawn King as its executive creative director as it looks to expand its audience and further develop its brand.

The former chief creative officer at Arrivals + Departures will work with Civilized’s publisher Derek Riedle and the rest of the company’s leadership team to develop the creative of Civilized as a brand, with the goal to connect with both consumer and B2B audiences within the cannabis industry. He will also work on the development of products and channels, client branded content campaigns, as well as company culture at Civilized, which has offices in New Brunswick and California.

Civilized was founded by Riedle (the founder and former CEO of New Brunswick agency Revolution Strategy) in 2015 as an online magazine aimed at elevating cannabis culture. Beyond the website, the company also hosts online video network Civilized Studios, as well as Civilized Events, which produces branded experiences for the cannabis industry and consumers. In April, it received a $5 million investment from Canopy Rivers – the strategic investment partner of licensed producer Canopy Growth – to further develop its platforms.

King left Arrivals + Departures (formerly Extreme Group) last month after 17 years leading the creative department at the Halifax agency. At the time of his departure, he told strategy that he would be pursuing opportunities in the cannabis space, saying he was being pulled “in a few directions” between marketing and advocacy.

Anthony Taffe, previously an associate creative director at Arrivals + Departures, has since taken over leadership of the agency’s creative department.