"The stories I tell in my work always tend to come back to something based on my life. And I have to do it that way, because if I didn't no one would ever believe that a life like this could happen for a girl like me.”
You can’t fake fresh.
Take one random thought. Combine it with a global, intersectional perspective, a multi-dimensional work history and a love for culture and watch that one thought develop into something that can inspire and influence. This is where you will find Shannon.
Labeled a 'Next Gen CEO' by Refinery 29, Shannon Washington has built her career based on a solid reputation, visionary insight and an obsession with culture. In her 10+ year journey as a professional creative, Shannon has crafted integrated, brand and consumer experiences for a variety of industries, from finance to beauty, culminating with over 10 awards globally to include The One Club/One Show, The Effies, ADCOLOR, and The Emmys.
Currently, Shannon is the founding Executive Creative Director at ØPUS Brand Studios, a newly formed creative agency and idea foundry in Los Angeles. Before ØPUS, she was a SVP, Group Creative Director at Deutsch Los Angeles, where she crafted a new look and language for H&R Block with their 'Block Has Your Back' campaign. Previous to Deutsch, Shannon was a Creative Director at Droga5 where she drove the successful, culture driven relaunch of CoverGirl and sharpened her wit for Chase. While at Droga5 she actively contributed to industry diversity initiatives such as Droga’s D5in10 Academy and Here Are All The Black People with The One Club for Creativity. Shannon’s time at Droga was preceded by a successful tenure as a Creative Director at INVNT (then a division of Time Inc) where she focused on strategizing live, integrated lifestyle + beauty experiences for brands like the American Institute of Architects, Intel, SC Johnson, POPSUGAR, InStyle, People and Essence Magazines.
Before INVNT, Shannon served as a lead Digital Creative Director at GREY New York, where she focused on beauty and lifestyle brands. At GREY, Shannon's work led to a reinvigorated, more digitally confident Pantene brand with the social-first launch of the #ShineStrong campaign and 'Not Sorry' film which ushered in a new phase for the iconic brand, and 2014's newsworthy #WantThatHair Oscar's social campaign. In late 2014, after a successful pitch, Shannon assumed digital leadership of the Pandora Jewelry account where she worked to build a new social currency for the brand and develop a range of strategic tools and content campaigns to reintroduce the brand to a wider, younger audience in North America. Before GREY, Shannon served at the Digital Creative Director of beauty@gotham, where she advised on global digital strategy and served as the Digital Creative Director for Maybelline New York, Global, L’Oréal USA, L’Oréal Professionnel and Lindt Chocolate.
In her spare time, Shannon works to fuse her many passions into action and service. Starting with her co-founding The Vanguard, the young auxiliary group of the Museum of the African Diaspora in San Francisco in 2006, she's now moved on to larger, more personal platforms. Since 2009 she has published, designed and contributed to PARLOUR, a global digital travel-lifestyle destination for women of color. In 2011, Shannon created Feminist Enough, a storytelling project which gives a fresh voice to women of color and modern feminist ideals, powered by video and social media. As a huge advocate of mentorship, she also has served as a mentor with New Inc, a cultural and entrepreneur incubator program, and has also served within the same capacity for the MADE In New York Media Center. With both she lends her expertise in pitching and presentation development, creative strategy and planning.
In her spare time, Shannon is actively adding to the discourse around the importance and power of women in advertising through paneling and public conversations. In 2018, Shannon served on the Branded Entertainment jury for the One Show Awards and she also received the One Club/ADCOLOR Award for creative excellence for her body of work and service in the industry to include the exclusive black pencil.
When she's not in front of a monitor, Shannon is working on adding another stamp to her passport. Shannon is a proud and loud graduate of Howard University and lives in Los Angeles.
From the looks of it, her decision to quit pre-med was a good one. Happy to exist at the cross-section of creativity, strategy, execution and culture, she's always ready for a challenge.
And it's always fresh.