The Four Founders and Why We're Here

 Collaboration in high gear.

Collaboration in high gear.

All four of us have benefited from the inspiration, guidance and friendship of other women in our industries. We've learned from each other's experiences and stories and are collectively and individually stronger for it. With that in mind, The Broad Exchange is a place where our collective experiences can be shared through stories and conversation, and we are excited to open the conversation up to other high-achieving, driven, and motivated women in creative industries around the world. We look forward to sharing more of our stories soon, but for now here is a little bit about each of us...

Jen Hays

What is your current job?
I'm a freelance creative director and art director. I started freelancing again in 2016 after a long stretch of fulltime agency jobs at places like 360i and Droga5. I think it's good to put yourself in a situation where you get to see how well you can do on your own without the constant power of an agency behind you. Ultimately you should have yourself to impress and challenge everyday regardless of where you work. Working for yourself  helps you remember that. And I get to focus on work that makes me happy – the culturally relevant stuff that activates consumers to engage with brands.

Why is this initiative important to you?
There are few opportunities to let our guard down and speak from the heart. This initiative is allowing us to talk about things that will inspire growth for women like me in creative industries.  And the new forum-like format will allow us to have reach across the world. So, I'm really excited to see the dialog that is inspired by the stories we share, and what new stories come out of it.

Any advice for someone trying to get where you are?
First, you have to define your own success. You will have mentors and people who inspire you along the way, but if you rely on them to define what success should be for you, you will disappoint yourself. Second, there is no right way to get somewhere. Everything you do leads you to the current moment in your life and the multitude of skills you learn inform what you will be able to bring to the table. So get everything you can out of each step, because you will be able to look back and connect the dots at some point in the future and be able to see how everything you've done, has helped shape the amazing, talented and unique person you became.

Ashley Davidson

What is your current job?
I'm a creative director with a luxury (and urban planning!) background, and most of my work focuses on finding meaningful ways to build communities around shared values and interests. At the core of that work is the belief that great storytelling and social exchange can bring people together to support businesses or causes (and therefore communities) in a way that policy just can't. After 5 years building and leading the brand content studio for the relaunched Lincoln Motor Company, I left in early 2017 to become a founding partner of Citizen Brand & Story Lab, a Brooklyn/Detroit/LA based agency.

Why is this initiative important to you?
It's important for us to be able to identify our tribes for support and guidance. As a woman at a certain level of professional accomplishment, we are often pulled in many directions and it can be especially challenging to identify your peers and support system. I hope to make that easier, for myself and others. 

Also, as a professional "storyteller" (agreed; that term is overused), I firmly believe that we connect, relate, and learn by exchanging our stories. It's been this way since the cave days, yet if you look through history, women's stories are often a mere footnote. I'd like to change that.

Any advice for someone trying to get where you are? There is no one path. If you're open to exploring new things, and you stay close to what you value and find interesting, doors will open even as your plans seem to be falling apart. Push through with all the energy you can muster, learn from every experience with your whole heart, have faith that it will come together, and know thyself. 


Kim Spikes

What is your current job?
I'm General Manager + Partner at Sim NY. My role touches on every aspect of the business from operations, finance, sales, clients services, technology to business plans. My goal is to create a seamless backend that clients don't even notice day-to-day. A infrastructure that supports their every need, but is invisible....things just happen before you even have to ask.

Why is this initiative important to you?
I think it's incredibly important for women to have a safe place to discuss topics with their peers. The group encourages us to learn from each other's experiences, develop relationships, inspire and offer support. FAB was originally founded to unite women just entering the entertainment industry in NY and THE BROAD EXCHANGE is the next natural evolution. Now that we have grown roots, this new space was created to support those in leadership positions.   

Any advice for someone trying to get where you are?
My advice would be to share, share, share. Share your resources, insights, information, experience, contacts etc. If you are continually giving back to the community, then the community will continue to grow which helps everyone achieve their goals. It feels great when you see those around you reaching new heights and even better when you were able to help them do it through a colleague or suggestion. I have my current position today thanks to a friend in FAB who suggested I meet with Post Factory over8 years ago!

Tamara Bridges Rothschild

What is your current job?
I'm managing the Toyota and Lexus brands at Ernst-Van Praag as Senior Consultant. My background creating and reviewing production bids, along with years of working directly with clients, agencies, networks and post production facilities enables me to align strategy, people and the cost control processes into the perfect blend of fiscal accountability. 

Why is this initiative important to you?
What I’ve learned over a my professional career is that opportunity is the leverage to success. And TBE facilitates and elevates opportunities for women to get to the next level professionally and personally by connecting women and allowing them to share experiences and to offer and receive advice from others in our industry. One can reach the top on the backs of others or on their shoulders and I choose the support of other women to help get me where I want to go.  If you arrive at the final destination on the backs of people, whose going to be there with you - no one. But if you are supported by others as you rise, you bring them along with your success. 

Any advice for someone trying to get where you are?
Own it or be owned is my motto.  Own your time, own your relationships, own your dreams and own your worth or it will fall into the hands of others.

jennifer hays1 Comment