we are strategists by nature, creators by heart,

and individuals above all else.

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Donna Gray

CEO

CEO Donna Gray has over 25 years of industry experience and, alongside partner Christy Gormal, has led Matchbook Creative since its formation in 2007. Donna's experience, coupled with an innovative, client-oriented approach, has earned Matchbook clients such as USA Track & Field, NASCAR and McGraw Hill. Donna served previously for over ten years as VP and Creative Director of Gumas Advertising, a San Francisco advertising agency, where she spearheaded accounts such as Leap Frog, Hewlett-Packard and Mattel Interactive, earning multiple national awards such as the American Corporate Identity, National Sales and Marketing and MAME awards.

As a faculty member at Butler University, Donna led her student teams to first place in the regional competition of the prestigious NSAC (National Student Advertising Competition) on three separate occasions over the course of six years, marking the first time Butler had achieved this recognition.

Donna earned her BFA in Design from Ball State University and her MS, magna cum laude, in New Media from Indiana University in 2005. Donna also serves as a board member for three nonprofit organizations in Indianapolis.

LinkedIn
dgray@matchbookcreative.com

Christy Gormal

PRESIDENT & CMO

As President and CMO, Christy Gormal oversees all agency and client operations. By working heavily with our agency partners, Christy has brought in renowned clients and unique projects to Matchbook since its inception.

Christy's past experiences in agencies and at the Indianapolis Business Journal bring publishing expertise, green advertising solutions, and sports marketing expertise to the agency. Working heavily in client representation and public relations, Christy is a specialist in sponsor, partner and media relations, as well as athlete and public figure representation.

Christy earned her Bachelor of Fine Arts in Visual Communication from the University of Indianapolis and earned a Master of Science, magna cum laude, in New Media (School of Informatics) at Indiana University.

LinkedIn
cgormal@matchbookcreative.com

Maris Schiess

Vice President & Director of Strategy

As Vice President and Director of Strategy, Maris Schiess continually keeps clients top-of-mind. Maris specializes in account planning; developing in-depth marketing plans and strategies; and brand communications and is a recent recipient of a Hermes Creative Award for her strategic work. She has an extensive background in organizational marketing, previously holding marketing positions at the World Wildlife Fund; WIPB-TV, a PBS affiliate; and United Way Worldwide.

At Matchbook, Maris has experience overseeing key accounts. Maris graduated Ball State University, cum laude, with a Bachelor's Degree in Advertising and minors in Marketing and Communication Studies. She is a current member of the Junior League of Indianapolis and volunteers with local nonprofits, the Indianapolis Zoo and Ovar'Coming Together. Maris was also named an Indy’s Best and Brightest finalist in the Media, Sports and Entertainment Industry category in 2015.

LinkedIn
mschiess@matchbookcreative.com

Jenny Dexter

DIRECTOR OF BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT

Jenny received her bachelor's from Ball State University and has been in the creative industry for 18 years. Having co-founded her own boutique design studio for 13 years, Jenny understands the importance of swift, comprehensive communication in order to achieve client goals. She has worked as a brand manager for a global architecture firm, strengthening the firm's brand across multiple offices and design studios and helping to unify the company's image.

Collaborating with clients from the nonprofit, civic, government, political and consulting arenas to the health care, higher education, design, and legal markets, Jenny has devised strategies, managed creative, and built consensus among multiple stakeholders.

Jenny has co-chaired the marketing committee for the Butler University Laboratory School. She's been a member of the Indianapolis Chamber of Commerce and the Indianapolis chapter of AAF.

LinkedIn
jdexter@matchbookcreative.com

Andrew Cress

Account Executive

Account Executive Andrew Cress’s experience in interacting with national brands, as well as his skills in wide-ranging project management, make him an important asset to Matchbook Creative’s clients. Whether interfacing outwardly or coordinating with the Matchbook team, Andrew ensures that every project receives the necessary attention and care to be successful.

Before he began his role with Matchbook, Andrew spent years working with multiple national clients including McDonald’s and Humana. He managed projects ranging print, TV, digital and beyond, applying his skills to lead to success after success.

Andrew is a graduate of Ball State University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Advertising. Outside of Work, Andrew and his wife enjoy exploring nature as well as everything that Indianapolis has to offer.

LinkedIn
acress@matchbookcreative.com

Kara Boonstra

Account Executive

Account Executive Kara Boonstra’s experience in project management and campaign activation brings a practiced level of expertise to her role at Matchbook Creative. Working with clients throughout every level of the creative process and making their vision a reality with the team at Matchbook, Kara strives to improve our work every day through her passion and talent.

As an Account Coordinator and Account Executive for a marketing firm located in Chicago, Kara handled clients including Gatorade and Propel Electrolyte Water; coordinating outreach efforts and events while managing nationwide partnerships. She has enacted brand efforts including developing sampling activation experiences reaching over 50,000 consumers nationwide. Prior to her role, Kara spent years working with the Chicago Blackhawks.

Kara is a graduate of the University of Southern Indiana with a Bachelor’s Degree in Public Relations and Advertising. She sometimes turns to reality TV as her guilty pleasure, and is a passionate reader.

LinkedIn
kboonstra@matchbookcreative.com

Shelby Barrett

Account Executive

Account Executive Shelby Barrett brings a wide-ranging skill set and high level of experience as she continually improves the projects she works on at Matchbook Creative. Shelby forms close connections with clients, inspiring trust both internally and externally.

In her positions as Account Coordinator, Assistant Account Manager and Account Manager at a Midwest-based advertising agency, Shelby planned, developed and executed annual marketing strategies and promotional tactics for clients throughout statewide markets. Shelby has also coordinated sports partnerships for the Indianapolis market and coordinated sponsorships for all major Indianapolis sports teams.

Shelby is a graduate of Purdue University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Public Relations. She is a passionate Kentucky and Purdue basketball fan, and outside of work she enjoys staying active in recreational sports leagues and spending time at the lake.

LinkedIn
sbarrett@matchbookcreative.com

Michael Stark

Creative Director

Creative Director Michael Stark creates visual representations positioning clients as premier leaders in their industry. Michael's experience in mobile and tablet app development, and sound recording operations bring an advanced understanding of multimedia design and production to Matchbook.

Michael has previously served as a recording engineer and studio musician for Ball State University and IndyPro Audio, professionally recording resources for both companies. He specializes in website design and functionality; mobile app design and development; and packaging design. Stark has won multiple awards for his creative work, including ADDYs, Hermes Creative Awards, Pinnacle Awards, Communicator Awards, Davey Awards and more.

Michael graduated Ball State University's Department of Journalism with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Advertising. He is a current member of Indianapolis' AIGA chapter and co-creator of Creative Shift, an outlet for young professional creatives that connects businesses to designers for mutual development and growth.

LinkedIn
mstark@matchbookcreative.com

Maddie Derdiger

Senior Art Director

As Matchbook’s Senior Art Director, Maddie leads the design team and oversees visual direction for all clients. With her background in fine arts, Maddie has been an asset providing special design capabilities, print and digital design, animation, and illustration. Her design work has been seen on the outside of Madison Square Garden and her environmental space design has influenced Quality Inn, USA Track & Field, Eli Lilly and more. Her work has won AAF Addys, PRSA's Pinnacle Awards and Hermes Awards.

Attending the University of Southern California, Maddie graduated cum laude and received her undergraduate in Fine Arts. She is an active member of the USC Chicago Alumni Club and Gamma Phi Beta Sorority Youth Chicago Alumni Club.

LinkedIn
mderdiger@matchbookcreative.com

Whitney Shelley

Studio Director

Whitney Shelley, Studio Director, manages the day-to-day operations at Matchbook; routing projects through the team and ensuring all projects are in-line with strategies and completed on time. Whitney monitors all workflow at the agency and ensures items are being completed to the utmost quality quality.

With working events such as Super Bowl XLVII and XLVIII, and nation-wide experiential projects with Coca-Cola on her resume, Whitney has an extensive background in experiential marketing and on-site activations. Whitney has managed a staff of over 60 team members and operated activations featured in Adweek. Her strengths in project and time management allow Whitney to not only analyze the effectiveness of each project, but to also support the management and artistic team at Matchbook.

Whitney is a graduate of Indiana University with a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism, focusing in Public Relations with a minor in Advertising.

LinkedIn
wshelley@matchbookcreative.com

Alex Vela

Art Director

Graphic Designer Alex Vela conceptualizes and creates everything from client logos and branding elements, to website design and print collateral. Alex appreciates and is attentive to minute detail, knowing that it is essential to effective and successful design.

Capable in a multitude of media, Alex has experience in a wide variance of production. With a Bachelor of Science in Graphic Design from The Art Institute of Indianapolis, Alex has a background in 2D animation, video editing, and literary publication design.

LinkedIn
avela@matchbookcreative.com

John Cavanaugh

Associate Account Strategist

Associate Account Strategist John Cavanaugh applies his versatile writing and editing skills to the benefit of clients in his position with Matchbook Creative. Crafting written content that both adheres with our clients’ strategy and voice and connects with their audiences, John’s approach allows him to effectively communicate, no matter the objective or industry.

Aside from his Bachelor of Science in Advertising at Ball State University and freelancing experience, John has also built his skills in writing and his eye for strategy through leadership experience in AAF’s National Student Advertising Competition. As Creative Director, he helped lead his team to a second-place regional finish, beating out the previous year's national champions. John has also held the position of Executive Director of Adapt, a student-run advertising agency at Ball State.

LinkedIn
jcavanaugh@matchbookcreative.com

Mark Arenz

Director of Digital Development

With 25 years of experience in media, marketing and advertising, Digital Development Manager Mark Arenz brings a practiced hand allowing Matchbook to successfully conduct high-intensity digital operations. From digital content development and management, to analytics and SEO/SEM optimization, Mark consistently offers innovative digital solutions to fuel client successes.

Mark’s skill set allows him to offer a versatile mix of expertise in creative content management and digital development. He has led web-based projects for clients ranging a vast array of industries, and his management experience has generated increased efficiency and optimized outcomes. Mark supplements his skills with a natural talent for formulating strategy, all to the benefit of Matchbook and clients alike.

Mark is a graduate of Depauw University, with a Bachelor of Arts degree in communications. Outside of work, Mark is a volunteer scoutmaster with the Boy Scouts of America, where he has supervised groups on high adventure expeditions throughout the US.

LinkedIn
marenz@matchbookcreative.com

Josh Rattray

Public Relations Manager

Public Relations Manager Josh Rattray brings a decade of communications and PR experience to his role with Matchbook Creative, creating and implementing strategies to support external outreach efforts. Josh’s extensive media knowledge and writing talents consistently support Matchbook’s partners and their audiences.

An Indiana native, Josh has made his professional mark in PR in collegiate athletics and at individual agencies. Previously at Butler, he co-coordinated $1.2 billion in media exposure during the team's back-to-back appearances in the NCAA Final Four. His PR and social media efforts at NC State helped the athletic department set school records for men's basketball revenue and attendance. His passion for sports goes outside of work, as he spent 12 seasons as a high school baseball umpire in Indiana and North Carolina.

Josh graduated with a Bachelor of Arts from Butler University in 2006, and lives in Fishers, Indiana with his wife and daughter.

LinkedIn
jrattray@matchbookcreative.com

Ali McNichols

Social Media Manager

Social Media Manager Ali McNichols’s expertise in communications, strategy, client relations and digital media makes her ideally poised to enact effective communications for clients in her role with Matchbook Creative. Experienced in every aspect of agency process, from accounts to creative, Ali is able to anticipate client needs and execute content that furthers campaign goals.

Previously as a Senior Account Executive and Social Media Manager for an Indianapolis advertising agency, Ali worked on coordinating large public-facing initiatives, and later supported social media efforts for clients across a wide range of industries. Through her prior role as Social Media Manager and Intern Director at the Indiana House of Representatives, Ali is familiar with leadership roles while effectively communicating important information across all social channels.

Ali is a graduate of Purdue University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Public Relations. She is passionate about advancing the potential and interests of women throughout the community and beyond, serving as a member of the Board of Directors for the Junior League of Indianapolis. She is also a regular volunteer for the 500 Festival.

LinkedIn
amcnichols@matchbookcreative.com