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Friday Forum

Kevin McKeon headshot
Friday, March 24
11 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.

VCU Commons Theater
907 Floyd Avenue

Kevin McKeon

Chief creative officer/Olson

Topic: This isn’t a pen: 50 insights in 50 minutes

What can someone with a really short attention span possibly share with 200 super focused, super bright students of advertising that they haven’t already heard, learned, absorbed — that they don’t already know? How about this — a whole bunch of things that you can’t know… unless you’ve already spent a long career both succeeding and failing (and watching others do the same) in the business. Yeah, that’ll work. So that’s what I’m going to give you — 50 things I learned, one a minute, for 50 minutes. From what to look for in your first job, to how to make sure your first job isn’t your last. And if just five of them stick with you, trust me, you’ll be at a much better place than I was at a similar point in my career.


Kevin loves a good quote, and here’s one from Louis C.K. that you might hear him repeat: “Everything you do should be better than anything you did before.”

Kevin is one those rare individuals who believes that the more you accomplish in life, the more you’re on the hook to keep pushing further to never get comfortable with what’s already on your resume. He’s also a firm believer that building culture builds agencies, the end product is all that really matters and that everyone h partners with, regardless of department or stated area of expertise, is really doing the same job: making great creative work that makes a difference in the world and in his clients’ business.

Kevin has carried this thinking with him to great success at many of the best agencies in the country, including BBH, Strawberryfrog, BBDO, Lowe and now at Olson, which he joined in September as chief creative officer. Kevin introduced America to Axe Body Spray and Johnnie Walker’s “Striding Man,” reversed two decaes of sales decline for Jim Beam, and his work for these and many other clients has been recognized in multiple categories at every major award show, including Cannes, The One Show, Clios, Andys, ADC Awards and Effies. During his tenure as executive creative director at BBH, the agency was recognized as East Coast Agency of the Year.

His brand-building experience covers every category and media channel, and has spanned the globe for brands like Heineken, Emirates Airlines and Jim Beam. He’s served on the judging panels of every major award show and on the boards of The One Club and Art Directors Club. In his spare time, he’s managed to raise three children and squeeze in a few marathons.