We had the good fortune of connecting with Judeus Samson and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Judeus, can you tell us more about your background and the role it’s played in shaping who you are today?
Before I transferred to our agency’s Los Angeles location I worked in our main office in Downtown Detroit. On one of the floors I would pass this one poster hanging on a wall near the entry. It wasn’t a heavily art directed piece, very simple with bold text, but I always liked walking by to read the quote from writer Elmore Leonard, “Most Cities Get By On Their Good Looks. Detroit Has To Work For A Living.” It resonated with me because it was a simple summarization of work ethic I was raised in. My family is full of blue-collar workers. We all worked hard and took pride in it. My dad worked at a stamping plant for Ford, my mom, sister both nurses, and lot of my relatives in the same fields. I grew up with that same work-hard mentality. My first job in high school was constructing stages for our school’s theater class. For over 13 years I worked through the blazing summers and blistering winters in UPS warehouses loading and unloading trucks to get through college. Looking back it was difficult working those jobs, but it helped build my character and work ethic. However, after graduating I knew I wanted more for myself and it was difficult leaving a job I had invested so many years of my life, but I needed to take the next step. I eventually took an entry-level position at the company I work for now. That same work-hard mentality has helped me work my way up through several positions at an advertising agency that has been around for over a century, something I’m proud of.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I am really fortunate to have a career in a field in which I have a degree and can use the knowledge I gain through experience to my passions outside of work. Before I changed my major to marketing I studied engineering. I have been always been interested in how things work and how they are built. Because of this the switch from engineering to brand advertising felt natural. Like engineering, building a brand is just as much of a science and is much more than just a name and a logo. When I first started in my career it blew my mind to see the thoughtfulness and care people had. I would always think to myself I would never be as smart as these people. What really helped me grow was the culture depended heavily on having mentors who were happy to answer questions. My best advice to someone new to this field, if you’re passionate about it, stick with it and surround yourself with people who want to see you grow.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I love LA because there is so much random interesting stuff to do and see any given day of the week around the city. Day 1 – Start with tourist site-seeking spots: Santa Monica and Venice Beach, and Hollywood blvd Day 2 – Enjoy the museums: Check out either LACMA, The Broad, and The Griffith Observatory Day 3 – Enjoy the food: Quarters Korean BBQ, Tsjuita’s Ramen, Smorgasborg LA, and Grand Central Market Day 4 – For Pictures: The Last Bookstore, Bruce Lee’s statue in Chinatown, and Pershing Square Day 5 – Meet people: Mama Shelter, EP&LP Rooftop, andThe Bungalow in Santa Monica Day 6 – Just chill: Paradise Cover in Malibu, Manhattan Beach, and Huntington Beach Day 7 – Shopping: Fairfax in West Hollywood, Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills, The Grove, and The Citadel More places to eat: Pink’s Hot Dogs, Randy’s Donuts, Howlin’ Ray’s, and Zinque For more cocktails and drinks: Blind Barber, Melrose Umbrella Co, Gracias Madre, and Perch
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I want to give a shoutout to my parents, Maribelle and Andrae, who have always provided the love, support, and encouragement through it all. My sister Porsha who has always been supportive. All my aunts, uncles, and cousins in Michigan, Cali, Florida, and Vegas. My brothers from other mothers: Dimitri, Mandip, and Tre who always check in to see how I’m doing. The homie Mario who’s always down to create cool stuff. My boys Justin and Nick who are big encouragement in physical health. My good friends at my church, IGC, back in Michigan who keep in touch. Shoutout to my current a former co-workers who were there through the tough times to make things bearable.
Dimitri Alexander, Ciera Nicole, Ji hyo Park, and Rio Sirah