30 Under 30 Part 2

By The Drum, Administrator

September 29, 2003 | 12 min read

Name: Ross Laurie

Date of Birth: 31 December 1974

Job Title: Creative director

Company: Laurie Templar Knight Ltd

Place of birth: Edinburgh.

Career to date: *yawn* Scottish Equitable; Kwik-Fit (Marketing dept); Kwik-Fit (set up New Media Dept for Europe), Emurge (Seattle); marketing consultant; ITSNOTROCKETSCIENCE; Laurie Templar Knight. Oh and I have a Mobile Services company “Syfone” and an “interest” in a recruitment company.

Biggest professional achievement: An account we’ve just won – no question! (And the fact that one company I set up is up for Business of the Year.)

Professional goals: To build LTK into the most respected creative agency in the world (and an office in Barcelona).

Describe yourself in five words: “Sick of the Scottish weather.”

Professional role model: Don’t have one – I tend to surround myself with as many inspirational people as I can. If I had a hero, it would be Leonardo da Vinci but I don’t think he counts in this context.

What do you bring to your company: Had to ask the guys this one. Apparently, I bring the following “some OK ideas” (grudged), “some drive”, “useful contact list”, “entertainment through your dodgy hairdos”, “someone to send to the pub to meet clients”, “the shakes”, “the messiest desk we’ve EVER seen” (glad I am so appreciated!)

You have £500,000 – do you start your own agency/company or retire: What? Two things: Thing 1 – half a mill ain’t enough to retire on. Thing 2 – who in their right mind would need half a mill to start an agency (can you say “organic growth”?). So to answer that – I’d do both. Buy a decent flat in Barcelona for about £350k and use the rest to EITHER fit out a plush office and launch a new agency OR launch a club.

Professional pet hates: Complacency, crap ideas, buzz-words, “networking” and most of the bitches in this industry – get over it – just be good at your job and stop fucking around trying to get one up on people.

Name: Rebecca Duncan

Date of Birth: 17 April 1977

Job Title: Media executive

Company: Feather Brooksbank

Place of birth: Aberdeen

Career to date: Feather Brooksbank; Carat London; Johansens London; Galleries 99/00 AMI; Door-to-door photography sales.

Biggest professional achievement: a) not getting the sack; b) Cuervo Tequila sponsorship of XFM (still running 2 years on)

Professional goals: To provide brand consultancy, consumer and media insight on social ad campaigns such as Amnesty International, Refugee Council, etc.

Describe yourself in five words: Caring, challenging, optimistic, honest, understanding.

Professional role model: umm, dunno, never really had a role model

What do you bring to your company: Cat hairs.

You have £500,000 – do you start your own agency/company or retire: Looong holiday followed by launch of own agency, catering for charities and non-profit organisations

Professional pet hates: Shifty salesmen.

Name: Phillip Lockwood-Holmes

Date of Birth: 2 April 1976

Job Title: Senior developer and digital media studio manager

Company: Whitespace

Place of birth: Ipswich.

Career to date: Junior new media developer at Imagesenter (now Open Platform), web developer at Whitespace, Edinburgh; new media specialist at Waters Design, New York; returned to Whitespace 2003.

Biggest professional achievement: Bluffing my way into the industry.

Professional goals: Build an honest and accountable agency that improves the quality of life for its staff and for the wider world. And win the Mercury Music Prize.

Describe yourself in five words: hairy (growing moustache for Tacheback) [photographic evidence at http://www.whitespacers.com/tacheback].

Professional role model: My wife Katy, who taught me my first bit of HTML, and Andy Neal (ex-Navyblue) for setting the bar high.

What do you bring to your company: Myself by bike every morning.

You have £500,000 – do you start your own agency/company or retire: Retire? Have you seen the price of property in Edinburgh? Practically, I would do more pro-bono work

Professional pet hates: The endless rounds of personal appearances and screaming fans.

Name: Nicola Pierson

Date of Birth: 2 September 1973

Job Title: Deputy artistic director

Company: Edinburgh International Film Festival

Place of birth: Dunoon, Argyll.

Career to date: Started as education & marketing assistant at the Glasgow Film Theatre straight out of Uni before going on to work in publicity at BFI Distribution in London. Returned to Scotland to run the film programme at the MacRobert Arts Centre before starting at EIFF. I am now deputy artistic director here.

Biggest professional achievement: Bringing Sean Penn and Bollywood star Shah Rukh Khan to the Festival.

Professional goals: To exceed my own expectations.

Describe yourself in five words: Committed, friendly, organised, passionate and opinionated.

Professional role model: Sandra den Hamer, managing director of Rotterdam Film Festival. She has expanded and enriched their festival to an amazing extent.

What do you bring to your company: A love of the Festival combined with great strategic thinking, problem solving, providence with our tiny budget, remaining calm when it all goes wrong and, above all else, a sense of humour.

You have £500,000 – do you start your own agency/company or retire: Start my own events company. Or retire to work as a driver at film festivals around the world (that’s the way really to meet the filmmakers).

Professional pet hates: London-centric attitudes. Egos getting in the way of progress.

Hobbies: Watching films!

Name: Kris Yule

Date of Birth: 26 November 1974

Job Title: General manager, Display Advertising

Company: The Scotsman Publications Ltd

Place of birth: Sydney, Australia.

Career to date: (In a previous life: hotel concierge, snowboard instructor); advertising field sales exec, agency sales exec, agency group head, agency sales manager (all for TSPL).

Biggest professional achievement: Not losing my job after an agency presentation went horribly wrong (those present, including my boss, will remember it, no further comment).

Professional goals: Keep smiling and don’t get cynical.

Describe yourself in five words: pretty laid back, high expectations.

Professional role model: Richard Branson.

What do you bring to your company: Enthusiasm.

You have £500,000 – do you start your own agency/company or retire: Start my own company (it’s a secret).

Professional pet hates: bad manners, cancellations and people who are always late.

Name: Jason Wheelhouse

Date of Birth: 28 February 1981

Job Title: Junior copywriter

Company: Family

Place of birth: Leeds.

Career to date: Junior copywriter at Family since leaving college in July

Biggest professional achievement: Getting a job straight from college.

Professional goals: To be known for doing good work, and possibly win a few awards along the way.

Describe yourself in five words:

Tall, dark and handsome liar.

Professional role model: David Ogilvy.

What do you bring to your company: Youthful inexperience.

You have £500,000 – do you start your own agency/company or retire: Start an agency. It’s good to have a challenge in life.

Professional pet hates: None yet.

Name: Clare Smith

Date of Birth: 27 May 1974

Job Title: Director

Company: Empire events + marketing

Place of birth: Edinburgh.

Career to date: Sales and marketing at Insider magazine; marketing manager for Business a.m.; set up Empire Marketing post-demise of B’a.m.

Biggest professional achievement: Starting my own business

Biggest personal achievement: Don’t know, loads of little things, making and keeping great friends – is that too soppy? Beating Dave Roulstone at squash!

Professional goals: Growing the business into a successful, well respected, profitable company.

Describe yourself in five words: Comical, late(ish), energised, practical, bright, competitive – I know, that’s six.

Professional role model: Madonna – focused, clearly enjoys what she does, very much in control of her own career, and has made pots of dosh.

What do you bring to your company: Coffee, muffins, usually in a paper bag.

You have £500,000 – do you start your own agency/company or retire: Tough one ... would invest into our existing company, keep working, but definitely take a holiday

Professional pet hate: People who e-mail like they “txt”, junk e-mails generally, and when people don’t return your calls

Name: Barrie Robinson-Bule

Date of Birth: 11 September 1978

Job Title: Junior art director

Company: Family

Place of birth: Leeds.

Career to date: I left college in July and got a job at Family.

Biggest professional achievement: Getting a job.

Biggest personal achievement: Having a baby, well, holding my wife’s hand while she did the hard work

Professional goals: To be famous for producing great advertising.

Describe yourself in five words: Short, ish, Fat, ish, male.

Professional role model: Albert Lasker.

What do you bring to your company: A whiff of curry at lunchtime.

You have £500,000 – do you start your own agency/company or retire: Start an agency.

Professional pet hates: Well known publications spelling my name wrong. (Vol 19, “On the Move”).

Hobbies: Waking up at 2 a.m. and feeding my 18-month-old son.

Name: Karen MacDonald

Date of Birth: 31 October 1972

Job Title: Founder/director Blue Heron Creative Services

Company: Blue Heron Creative Services

Place of birth: Stornoway, Isle of Lewis.

Career to date: Amoeba Design, freelance graphic designer, magazine designer, web designer; Eolas Media Stornoway; manager e-station Ibiza, editor/web designer Styleibiza.com; graphic designer/web designer Vision Marketing, Cayman Islands; founder Blue Heron Creative Services Stornoway.

Biggest professional achievement: Starting the business in January and, while still waiting for my Mac to arrive, tendering for the Visit Hebrides job, getting it and managing to start it on my mum’s four-year-old iMac. Also, when Eolas won the first Scottish BAFTA. That was pretty good too.

Biggest personal achievement: The Outer Hebrides is a struggling economy with huge problems involving skilled individuals leaving the Islands to “seek their fortune” elsewhere. However, I love living in this unique, beautiful and remote place and am proud to be creating a living for myself doing what I love while producing an original, creative, quality product for my clients.

Professional goals: Much design work generated in the Hebrides is sent to mainland companies. My ambition is to create an agency that will harness the majority of the work that is getting sent off to companies that have no direct link to the Hebrides.

Describe yourself in five words: The fear of all sums.

Professional role model: Alex Tearse and Anne Buchanan of “Reefnet”. I worked with Alex and Anne during my time at Eolas. They now own Reefnet, a web development/e-commerce company. They gave me massive encouragement when I arrived back in Stornoway.

What do you bring to your company: Coffee stains, an occasional hangover and a comfy couch for close pals and clients. And I do all conception, layout, design, quoting, tendering, selling, accounting, brainstorming, trouble shooting, grovelling, schmoozing and begging that needs doing.

You have £500,000 – do you start your own agency/company or retire: I build my own studio with a massive sea view and employ a cleaner.

Professional pet hates: Clients insisting on flash-heavy, slow-loading, wobbling, whizzing, vibrating web sites with absolutely no content and enough eye candy to melt your teeth from 50 paces. Also, anyone who smugly says, “I could be a graphic designer, you know. Look, I did it for a fraction of the price.” Then slaps a stapled-together, multi-fonted monstrosity printed on bog roll and drenched in clip art in front of you. Font abuse. Leave the little guys alone. Too many fonts in one area are like cats in a bag, all fighting each other and they come out looking hellish.

Name: Constantin Alin Dobrica

Date of Birth: 20 April 1975

Job Title: Analyst-programmer


Avian Communications

Place of birth: Bucharest, Romania.

Career to date: 1998–2000 computer programmer (Romania); 2000–present analyst-programmer (Scotland).

Biggest professional achievement: Can’t decide. All my projects are great.

Biggest personal achievement: Not yet! Working on it!

Professional goals: To make Dobrica a world famous brand.

Describe yourself in five words: (I’ll do it in three) I am different! (Some would say strange ...)

Professional role model: All intelligent people.

What do you bring to your company: Spice.

You have £500,000 – do you start your own agency/company or retire: Definitely start my own company.

Professional pet hates: Boring, repetitive jobs.


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