We like to think that in an alternate universe where the Story Block Media team hadn’t met yet, we’d still find ourselves in a bar, beers in hand, debating the best call-to-action placement.
We’re an eclectic group, united by a love of marketing and a borderline-obsessive need to get measurable results.
Dennis is a New Orleans native who, like many of us, saw no reason to move away from the best city on Earth. He likes to solve problems, especially when those problems can be solved without him having to change out of flip-flops.
After cutting his teeth in the nonprofit world, where he advocated for children’s welfare, Dennis took his sizable skill set, eternal optimism, and legions of friends and co-founded Story Block Media. If you listen closely on a calm day, you can hear kids all over the greater New Orleans area saying, “Thanks for the assist, D!”
Along with being one of the company’s founders, Dennis is SBM’s go-to idea guy. When we asked everyone in the office to describe him, they agreed that he is relentlessly positive and immensely creative. Deepak even said, “Dennis’ ideas come out like daggers.” When we looked at him weird, he made a face and clarified, “Because he shoots them out quickly!”
Code name: D-Lo
Fun fact: Works best with two desks, two cell phones, and three computer monitors
Most likely to: Talk your ear off about inbound marketing
International man of mystery Massachusetts Reed Wendorf-French co-founded Story Block Media with Dennis. He arrived in New Orleans by way of Tulane University and, like many others, never left. He’s a self-taught web developer and a problem-solver at heart, which makes him a formidable Settlers of Catan opponent.
Reed is equally at home developing sites and apps from the ground up as he is finding the best combination of existing solutions for a client. He’s not interested in doing anything that involves a “hack” or “quick fix,” because he’d rather build the thing right the first time, but occationally caves ("when it makes sense").
Reed possesses a plethora of socks in fine weaves and interesting patterns. He’d love to sit down with a cup of coffee from Merchant and talk about how your website can become your best salesman.
Code name: Reed it and weep
Fun fact: Used to be a snowboard instructor
Most likely to: Convert your website to HubSpot when you’re not looking
Deepak keeps an unflattering high-school photo of himself taped to the wall above his desk as a helpful reminder to stay humble. A California native, he’s a graduate of San Francisco State University, where he studied broadcast communications. It was also where he learned to take selfies — a skill he sharpens daily.
After three years as a news anchor and reporter for WGNO, New Orleans’ ABC affiliate, D made the shrewd career decision to join the Story Block Media team. As SBM’s Senior Creative Director, he spends more of his day inside his inbox than he’d like, which is unsurprising when you consider that he gets up at 4 AM.
Deepak’s deep love of country music is a constant source of bemusement, but we let him work here as long as he uses headphones.
Code name: Superman
Fun fact: Named his dog, Noosa, after his favorite brand of yogurt
Most likely to: Text you a Celiné Dion GIFs
The office’s resident Ron Swanson, Barrett Macgowan is dangerously Scottish. When he’s not putting food in inappropriate containers or preaching the gospel of the Jerky Gods, he’s writing copy for Story Block Media clients and campaigns.
At least, we think that’s what he does. No one can see his laptop screen from this angle.
Barrett grew up across the lake in Covington, and realized he wanted to work in advertising before most kids learn how to tie their shoes. He majored in marketing at Ole Miss, and hustled like crazy to become a copywriter straight out of college — which he did, spending nearly six years working his way through the ranks at Peter Mayer Advertising.When it turned out that teamwork did not, in fact, make the dream work, Barrett went freelance and has been enjoying that #workfromhomelyfe ever since. He once rode a shark in Honduras, so things are looking up for him.
Code name: Khaki Man
Fun fact: Thinks it’s OK to bring “pocket milk” to work in a Baggie
Most likely to: Groan at your puns
Being the queen of digits at a digital agency comes with no small amount of responsibilities.
Although Angelle’s digital focus refers to numbers, not to pixels or fingers, the sheer amount of digits she shepherds makes her a vital organ in this crazy organism we call Story Block Media.
When looking at her full list of responsibilities – accounting, HR, receptionist, and executive assistant to our fearless leader Dennis – one can’t help but worry about her ability to maintain salon-quality hair while wearing so many hats. But your fears would be misplaced. Her raven locks remain as immaculate as Story Block Media’s bookkeeping.
Like so many New Orleanians, her story began at Charity Hospital. Like so few New Orleanians, her story then took turns through competitive acrobatics and wearing a cow costume during a school telethon. (We’ve reached out to school representatives for documentation of these bovine-themed marketing heroics, but have yet to hear back. We’ll keep you updated.)
Code Name: The Monarch of Math
Fun Fact: Angelle can touch her nose with her tongue.
Most Likely To: Completely waste her ability to touch her nose with her tongue by never doing it for her curious coworkers.
Graphic design wizard Julia Sevin grew up in sleepy Mendocino, California. When she was 19, she came to New Orleans to meet her now-husband and just, well, stayed forever.
Julia's first career was in publishing: specifically, limited-edition genre fiction for the publishing house she ran with said husband, RJ. She taught herself publication layout programs, and fell in love with the software. "It's like they say--you should do something you would do even if you didn't get paid for it," she says. This counts also for her apple pie, which could win prizes if any slices ever made it past the pie pan.
Code names: Hoo-Hoo-Hoooolia, Suffer-No-Foolia
Fun fact: Drinks more coffee than anyone else in the office and still somehow maintains a resting heart rate of 50bpm
Most likely to: Sneak vegan food onto your plate
When asked where she was from on the questionnaire for this bio, Sam wrote, “Outer Space because I am infinite and made of stardust.” It really set the tone for everything that would follow.
The specific portion of space Samantha (full name redacted) Barnes hails from is technically Morgan City despite growing up in Alabama.
Story Block Media’s resident Trekkie and bee fan eschewed childhood dreams of becoming a cosmologist in lieu of her current position as a Code Builder and Graphic Storyteller. A task she is well suited for after working for clients like Stryker, French Market, Hermann-Grima and Gallier Houses, AIGA New Orleans, Ochsner, IBERIABank, Tulane, Corporate Realty, One Canal Place, and iOffice.
In her formative years, Sam earned the nickname “Hey, nerd” through a mixture of her model UN summit participation (where she represented Romania on the Security Council) and her nuanced stance on the best super heroes.
Today, Sam is a proud mother of 3 and the Communications Director for AIGA New Orleans.
Code names: Phoenix Starsand
Fun fact: “I’m a somnambulist – I sleep walk and talk.”
Most likely to: Passionately equate a Saints player with heralded futurist Michio Kaku in the same breath like everyone is just going to follow along.