Frank Cartagena is joining The Community as chief creative officer of its New York office, which opened three years ago.
He takes over from Bobby Hershfield, who served as vice president and executive creative director of The Community’s New York office before leaving last year to join The Via Agency as chief creative officer.
Cartagena joins from 360i, where he served as executive creative director for two years. During his time there, he and fellow executive creative director Sam Shepherd oversaw a number of award-winning campaigns, including an Alexa voice skill called Westworld: The Maze that lets fans of the HBO show play a choose-your-own-adventure game. The project won the Radio and Audio Grand Prix at Cannes Lions last year.
He also worked on a recent tie-up between the New Orleans Tourism Marketing Corporation and Spotify, which involved putting together an exclusive, all-expenses-paid concert for fans of the city’s musicians.
“I was impressed with Frank immediately. He is an eclectic thinker with great ideas fitting in every possible format and platform,” said Joaquin Mollá, The Community’s co-founder. “He truly understands how to use the intersection of data, media, creativity and culture, perfectly aligning with our agency vision.”
The Community, which is based in Miami and has offices in New York, San Francisco, Buenos Aires and London, was founded 19 years ago. Since then, the Publicis-owned creative agency has provided both multicultural and general market services for clients including Mexican beer brand Victoria, Corona, Converse, Tic Tac and British supermarket Tesco.
In his new role, Cartagena will report to The Community’s president, Luis Montero, as well as co-founders Jose and Joaquin Mollá. He expects to work with clients including Verizon and Mondelēz while helping the New York office grow and win new business.
“It’s also going to be a lot of hustling, building and figuring out where the opportunities are or where we have to find new opportunities to grow,” he said, explaining that he prefers to join agencies that have somewhat of a startup mentality. “I thrive a little bit more when I have to create opportunities for myself.”
Cartagena started his career in Boston, where he worked as a copywriter at Hill Holliday and Arnold Worldwide. He then joined DDB New York as associate creative director in 2011, where he began working with Shepherd as well as Menno Kluin, who currently serves as 360i’s chief creative officer.
Following their stint at DDB New York, the three of them moved to Deutsch New York, where they staged a “Pinterest Yard Sale” for spray paint brand Krylon that won a Titanium Lion at Cannes Lions.
The trio has been working together at 360i since 2017. In light of Cartagena’s departure, he said they remain “very good friends” and that both are supportive of his decision to go out on his own.
“For me, it’s a good opportunity to step out and really grow,” he said.