US State Dept
Edward R Murrow
Award for Excellence
MEDIA & PRESS
Wall Street Journal
Los Angeles Times
New York born, London and Cape Town raised creative director Jesse Stagg began his career at Ogilvy Advertising South Africa, making a mark with innovative work for VW, Audi, Winston and Shell. Steeped in fundamental design disciplines and principles of color, composition and typography, he married these skills to his passion for emerging Hip Hop and House music. As an early cultural entrepreneur, he created the UFO Collective to build large-scale, socially diverse, experiential music and art events and went on to found influential clubs Eden, Uforia and World Peace Party. His leadership helped lay foundations for Hip Hop & EDM culture & industry in South Africa which have since become vital cultural and economic forces on the continents and worldwide.
Landing in the US as an Art Director he became a Creative Services Manager for Turner Group, Disney Interactive, Viacom, and CBS/Infinity. He excelled by building and leading great teams that created successful integrated campaigns for national brands in digital, broadcast and print media. From the Big Idea to the small detail, his campaigns at Cartoon Network Studios established a design direction that helped define the look of the network, giving rise to the cable hit-factory Cartoon Cartoon! Stagg launched campaigns for Powerpuff Girls, Dexter's Lab, Johnny Bravo, Cow and Chicken and other Emmy-winning shows, ushering in a new generation of animation superstars. Getting into movies as Creative Services Manager at Viacom/Paramount, Stagg developed a new global brand identity for the vast TV and Movie Star Trek universe and pioneered the first major franchise digital style guide, unifying its many parts. He managed creative for all licensed properties, including Top Gun, Twilight Zone, The Godfather & Hawaii 5-0.
Ever the early adopter, Stagg met the online revolution head on at Disney.com, designing the home page and album sites for Disney films – Lion King, Toy Story, Austen Powers, and diverse Hollywood Records artists – Insane Clown Posse, Queen, Leeann Rhimes. Tapped as Department Head for radio powerhouse CBS/Infinity, Stagg spearheaded design of major market websites KROQ, LIVE105, KCBS and others. Compelling web portals and campaigns for: The Howard Stern Show, Loveline with Dr. Drew, and the original digital launch campaign for Coachella Festival, helped achieve a weekly audience of eighty (80) million. For his innovative contributions to streaming radio online, he received multiple awards and nominations, including: RTDNA Edward R Murrow Prize.
Stagg’s innovations and experience in media, art and culture, led to his position as Communications Chair for the Graphic Arts Council of LA County Museum of Art. During his tenure, initiatives like Into the Pixel (the first video game art awards) and Late Night at LACMA were born and membership tripled. Stagg was asked to consult Banksy on his record-breaking LA Barely Legal Show. Recently, Stagg received a U.S. State Department grant working with Shepard Fairey to produce a 10-storey-tall Nelson Mandela Mural in Johannesburg, commemorating the 20th anniversary of South African democracy.
As Media Arts Instructor Stagg has lectured at UCLA, CalState LA and AFDA and been interviewed by VICE, the Los Angeles Times, Tech TV and his projects covered by the Wall Street Journal, TIME, CNN, Variety and Hollywood Reporter.