Zulu Alpha Kilo hires Michael Mayes and Dean Lee

The agency has tapped the industry veterans to set the creative path for its new Vancouver office.

Zulu Alpha Kilo has looked to a pair of well-respected names in Vancouver’s advertising industry to lead its recently announced Western Canadian office: ECDs Michael Mayes and Dean Lee.

Zulu will be employing Mayes (pictured above, left) and Lee’s talents in Vancouver for local, regional and national work. Zulu’s Western Canadian clients already include A2 Milk, Enmax, plus other local brands to be announced, including one in the travel and transportation sector. Zulu also continues to service Subaru Canada’s Western regions.

An AD by trade, Lee was most recently ECD at DDB Vancouver. During 17 years with the agency, Lee worked with high profile international and local brands such as McDonald’s, Pepsi Co, SunRype, BC Lottery Corp and Labatt. He also helped launch Netflix in Canada.

Mayes, meanwhile, has spent the last 12 years as a high-profile freelance writer and CD, touching work at dozens of top Canadian agencies. Prior to that, he worked with Zulu founder and CCO Zak Mroueh at Taxi in Toronto, creating campaigns for brands including WestJet, Nike and Molson, as well as launching BMW’s MINI brand across Canada. Mayes and Mroueh are also no strangers to setting up new offices together, having worked together to establish Taxi Vancouver, where Mayes was its first CD and helped grow the office from zero to 25 people, working on brands including Telus and Dairy Farmers of Canada. Mayes and Lee also briefly worked together during the former’s brief stint with DDB in 2005.

Both creatives have had their work recognized internationally at the likes of Cannes, The One Show and London International Advertising Awards.

The hires come on the heels of Zulu Alpha Kilo concluding a “re-engineering plan” that included revamping its leadership team to prepare it for expansion into new markets. In January, the agency added CMO Christine McNab to build its global portfolio as part of those plans, building on a growing body of international recognition that has included Agency of the Year by U.K.-based The Drum, Independent Agency of the Year at the Epica Awards, Agency of the Year at Kinsale Sharks and Ad Age’s International Small Agency of the Year recognition for the third time.

Back at home, Zulu also ended 2021 with a handful of promotions and hires in Toronto.