Cover . Rosemary Ugboajah . Neka Creative

Neka . Wild Goose

Wild Brand Promise

 

For Rosemary, advertising and brand development has always been a passion, albeit a professional one. Post high school, she decided to spend a year away from an all encompassing science curriculum by enrolling at art school— and hasn’t looked back since. After majoring in fine arts and graphic design in London, Ugboajah came to Minneapolis and joined the advertising track at the University of Minnesota’s School of Journalism.

She gained her ad experience as an account manager at six different creative agencies. “Yes, our industry has a revolving door.” Rosemary says with a smile. Corporate experience? Marketing planner at a Fortune 100 Company. In 2009, she opened her first creative agency with two partners. Four years later, it was time to solo and she launched Neka in 2013. “My entry to entrepreneurship was due to serendipity. The idea sounded more attractive every time a new batch of corporate associates were ‘downsized.”, she remembers. I was already in conversations with former agency colleagues about starting our own shop—

when we all got laid off the same week. By the end of the week we had started our microbusiness. I can’t imagine doing anything else now.” she shared.

Like most micros, Ugboajah used personal funds to finance the business. Her past employers Miranda Moss and Hideki Yamamoto were her inspiration. Rosemary says, “They ran a successful design firm and instilled a very strong culture of respect and inclusion in everything we did. I consider them my business godparents.”

Neka Creative team members work at home part of the time. Finding the discipline to work and not be domestic was Ugboajah’s initial issue but since then she developed a workable routine and found an office.

She thinks the best part is waking up with a charge everyday to go and get it! The hardest part to start? Serving multiple roles including the ones she’s always known she’s not any good at such as administrative tasks. Her wish is for upcoming generations is to be bold enough to embrace their creativity, feel free to chart their way and not be compelled to conform. She believes we need the all the creative, diverse ideas we can get to make this world a better place.

Favorite song? Whole New World by Alan Menken and Tim Rice.

One word descriptor? Relentless.

Wishes she would have tried? Landscape architecture. I’d love to design gardens. 

Like to meet in an elevator? Richard Branson.

Introvert, extrovert or ambivert? Extrovert.

Birth order? YOUNGEST Years between? FOUR years between each sibling. 

Favorite quote? You can’t build a reputation on what you are going to do. Do it now.