Scandal is a public relations, marketing and social media CO-ACTIVE focusing on entertainment, tech and lifestyle companies. From startups to household names, Scandal works with companies to perfect their branding and messaging, as well as creates a strategic, tailored communications plan. Scandal, along with other forward-thinking firms, believes that the traditional agency model is broken and in conjunction with these like-minded companies, has formed an alliance to offer collaborative services that make sense for your business. We are The Revolution. We don’t just pitch stories for our clients – we are our clients. We’re living the life.
If you are looking for a big, corporate agency who will take your money and do nothing for you other than allow you to say that you work with a big, corporate agency – stop reading. That’s not us.
If you are looking for an agency that claims to be an “expert” in everything you need – stop reading. No one is an expert in everything.
If you are looking for senior company executives who like to use big words just to hear themselves talk, and then never spend any time on your business – stop reading. We are industry professionals with years of experience. We are straightshooters and don’t need to spin our own clients to prove a point.
If you are looking for a company that offers only big, splashy ideas that yield no return on investment – stop reading. We work with our clients to come up with strategies that will work, no matter the budget.
if you are looking for smart, creative, fun, senior-level strategic partners with proven track records who will work with you, please keep reading. That IS us.
With more than 18 years of experience in communications, Melisa has represented clients in the areas of entertainment, digital content & media, technology, lifestyle, music, fashion, television, sports, travel and consumer products. Prior to founding Scandal Co-Active, she was tapped by New York PR and Marketing firm Dan Klores Communications to open and lead its Los Angeles office. Before that, Melisa spent over 12 years at Bender/Helper Impact where as Vice President she built and oversaw the digital practice area within the Entertainment Content division, as well as Code: Relevant, the agency’s social media department.
What was the most fulfilling moment that you experienced with a client?
In 2009, two journalists from Current TV were detained in North Korea and I had the opportunity to work with former Vice President Al Gore in order to strategize our communications for the network, which he co-founded, during this sensitive time. Back then, I remember thinking that it was absolutely bananas that I was sitting in a room – lil ole 30-something year old – with these powerful people discussing what ended up being international news with a happy ending.
What would your perfect day entail?
I recently learned to surf, so ideally it would start with an early morning surf – but not too early. Follow that with some Coffee Bean, maybe a hike or Pilates workout, sew a dress and eventually end the day by devouring a Dodger Dog in Chavez Ravine. Well, let’s be honest a perfect, PERFECT day would actually end with me having a drink with Matt Kemp and/or Andre Ethier.
Claire Gendel has worked as a publicist for almost a decade, representing celebrities, brands, educational experts, non-profit organizations, and most recently, the tech and entertainment spaces. She began her PR career at The Rose Group, a boutique agency where she handled clients such as Tyra Banks, SKYY Vodka, sbe and Westfield Shopping Centers. After that, Claire was the in-house publicity director at New York-based tech startup, GetGlue, where she was instrumental in building the company’s considerable growth in the second screen space, not only through public relations but by creating partnerships with television networks and studios alongside the business development team.
Claire is currently freelancing and works with startups including Gunpowder & Sky, Cut.com and more. Previous clients include Saucey, Rinse, Laurel & Wolf, Hulu, Tipsy Elves, and Vrse. She also works on television shows, most recently Jeopardy!, Sports Jeopardy! and Wheel of Fortune, filling in for the publicists while out on maternity leave. Claire’s breadth of knowledge and love of pop culture gives her a unique slant on the world of public relations, social media and the art of messaging. Claire resides in Los Angeles, CA where she’s known for her knowledge of good food and drink and love of travel.
Annie Parker has been with Scandal Co-Active, a public relations, marketing and social media co-active focusing on entertainment, tech and lifestyle companies, since its inception in 2014 and is a key part of this public relations’ revolution. Annie exemplifies organization, attention to detail and the ability to coordinate multiple projects when working with companies to perfect their branding and messaging and turn startups into household names.
Specializing in technology, entertainment and lifestyle, Annie has helped launch multiple web-series, mobile games, mobile apps, influencer platforms and next generation studios including Gunpowder & Sky and Cut.com. Other clients have included Mammoth Media, Comcast’s Watchable, Vrse (now Within), Meerkat (now Houseparty), Lifeboat Productions and Wag!, in addition to many more projects during her time with Scandal.
Prior to joining Scandal, Annie successfully built and ran her own personal stylist business, spending more than seven years in the fashion industry. Her background includes social media, event planning and coordination.
A graduate of California State University, Fullerton with a B.S. in Communications with an emphasis in public relations, Annie now resides in Portland, Oregon.
Parinaz Farzin is a marketing specialist and public relations consultant. She creates and executes integrated marketing communications strategies, encompassing PR, digital marketing and paid media for clients. She also counsels clients on brand building and development to improve external awareness and visibility.
She has extensive experience across the entertainment, digital media, lifestyle and technology spaces overseeing consumer/corporate communications efforts, product/show launches, national campaigns, media events and crisis management. Current clients include Mammoth Media and Pitchmen’s go90 series MVP. She has also worked with top companies including adidas, Disney, mitú, Target and Warner Bros. Most recently, Farzin was an Edelman executive managing teams on several accounts including Petco, Vans, Movember and Dole. As a part of the Scandal Co-Active network, she helps oversee media relations, client communications and talent engagement for digital entertainment projects.
Farzin is fluent in Spanish and received her B.A. in International Affairs and Latin American & Hemispheric Studies from the George Washington University. She is a native Angeleno, having lived in Los Angeles since she was five.
Ashley Casey is a public relations consultant with Scandal Co-Active, a public relations, marketing and social media co-active focusing on entertainment, tech and lifestyle companies.
Prior to joining Scandal, Casey has worked as a Social Media Manager for Have a Happy Co., Copy Editor for the award-winning Iowa State Daily, PR Coordinator for Iowa State’s Trend Magazine and Freelance Contributor for The Budget Babe, where she continues to write on a weekly basis.
Casey’s passion for building relationships, storytelling, attention to detail and ability to multitask allows her to propel companies into the spotlight and create lasting impressions. While with Scandal, Casey has worked with clients such as Gunpowder & Sky, Cut.com, Comcast’s Watchable, Gixo, Pitchmen’s go90 series MVP, Lifeboat Productions and Panty Drop, in addition to many other projects.
As a graduate of Portland State University with a B.S. in Communications with a focus in Advertising Management, Casey now lives in Portland, Oregon, where she can always be found with a coffee and iPhone in hand.
Rachel is a consultant at Scandal Co-Active, a public relations, marketing and social media co-active focusing on entertainment, tech and lifestyle companies.
Prior to Scandal, she has specialized in social media, community outreach, marketing, content strategy and public relations for a wide range of clients and industries including fitness, fashion, healthcare and non-profit.
While at Scandal, Kababik has worked with clients such as Comcast’s Watchable, Gixo, Gunpowder & Sky, Mammoth Media and Pitchmen’s go90 series MVP, in addition to managing social media communities for multiple clients. She has a passion for creating integrated marketing campaigns that focus on creative solutions with a fresh approach to modern media.
Kababik majored in Journalism with an emphasis in Strategic Communications at the University of Nevada, Reno. The Southern California native plans to relocate to San Francisco in 2018 and continue building media relationships while fusing her passion for both public relations and branding.
What would your perfect vacation look like?
A week somewhere coastal, mornings starting with a strong cup of coffee, followed by jogs on the beach, days spent (unplugged, of course) exploring all the city had to offer, and evenings of relaxation with a new, best-selling book & glass of wine in hand. Yup, can I go now?
Samantha Thomas is a consultant at Scandal Co-Active, a public relations, marketing and social media co-active focusing on entertainment, tech and lifestyle companies.
Prior to Scandal, Thomas worked in insurance doing commercial underwriting while attending Portland State University part-time. Unfulfilled in the insurance industry, Thomas returned to the University fulltime to complete her degree.
Thomas majored in Communication Studies at Portland State University. When she is not knee deep in the daily grind of PR, Thomas enjoys hosting and cooking for her family and friends, playing with her lovable husky, or exploring the exciting and interesting city of Portland.
What is your favorite quote?
“The messier the better” – My Dad
Born in Mexico City, Miriam Castillo is a visual designer and illustrator based in Brooklyn, New York. Her hand-drawn illustrations are creative whimsy, fantasy and exploration. She is an antiquarian, fascinated by Victorian design, and draws inspiration from her journey as a yoga instructor – which has connected her to a whole new world. Miriam ventures in custom design services from visual design, pattern making and graphic design to illustration and murals. Finding her passion in mixed media, she is an artist that pushes her craft forward in creative. For more information about Miriam’s work, please visit www.miriamcastillo.com.
What’s the most valuable aspect of your work on a personal level?
My work has allowed me to achieve a state in which an unconscious language emerges within my lines. I think of my work as a meditative process; a way to relax and move into a more personal world that has nothing to do with my waking reality. Through this transmutation I discover new realities.
What would be considered essential in your career for constant growth?
Traveling is the one essential activity that expands knowledge through experience and personal encounters with other people. It takes you out of your comfort zone and brings challenges on many levels. I love to travel and work simultaneously.
Beata exemplifies the adaptable, multi-disciplinary ethos of a creative technologist. A multilingual Polish-born front-end developer who is also a wife, mother, yoga instructor and avid world traveler, Beata brings an artist’s eye for beauty and a coder’s attention to detail to every project she touches. After graduating from college with a degree in multimedia, she honed her skills at a number of award-winning agencies in NYC, working on the lead development team for clients like Dior, Trader Joe’s, Premium Outlets, Wisdom Tree and Hershey’s. Since then she has started Pink Parachuters, a coding, IT consulting and strategy firm where she helps businesses optimize their online presence. Beata loves that the digital landscape is always changing, and that there is always something new to learn.
What would your perfect vacation look like?
A month in the tropics of Costa Rica practicing yoga, meditating, eating fresh fruit, surfing and watching sunsets would be absolute paradise. I will move there one day, mark my words.
What drives you?
I am fortunate to be surrounded by many talented people who inspire me every day. My husband, an amazing designer, constantly motivates me to pursue my dreams. My daughter is an infinite source of laughter, curiosity and wonder. I always want her to be proud of her mommy. And, my yoga practice helps me to keep my life balanced and whole.
The following represents a small sampling of startup and household
name clients that Scandal currently works with, or has worked with
over the years at other agencies.
In the startup and technology space, new companies face many challenges to get off the ground - building a team, finding technology partners and mentors, raising money - and there are excellent existing incubators and accelerators that provide support in these areas and help take a company from prototype to launch.
While there is a fantastic ecosystem in bringing products from ideation to market, little infrastructure exists for companies at that critical time where on-point messaging, storytelling, as well as PR and Marketing launch strategies help companies elevate in to the public sphere, gain traction and most importantly achieve product-market fit.
Scandal LABS is a solution to this need as we provide support for ready-to-launch startups and those looking to scale. Typically when a company is nearing launch, Founders are often resource-strapped for time, funds and most often in their knowledge base in terms of best practices of planning a well-timed and executed rollout. We nurture our LABS companies and run them through our 'Lean PR & Marketing' program, helping Founders validate and invalidate their products by testing the landscape with communications strategies. We work with you to help test, measure and scale when you're ready.
Our 'Co-Active' model naturally lends itself to the entrepreneurial, startup community. As a team, we are all entrepreneurs and have started our own companies in addition to having worked with countless others to launch their own dreams. We live for challenges, solving problems and creative collaboration. And we have a ton of fun - on a typical day we can be found surfing, biking, DJing, practicing yoga and teaching Pilates - all while laughing. As early adopters of all things tech, entertainment and lifestyle, we thrive in disrupting industries and honing the creative process.
We also recognize that too often companies find themselves having to reinvent the wheel by replicating existing technologies, software and processes to develop their new product. Our LABS companies operate in the lifestyle, entertainment and technology industries and have multiple touch points with each other in an effort to minimize regurgitation and maximize potential scale.
If you'd like to learn more about how you can participate in the Scandal LABS program, contact firstname.lastname@example.org