Here’s the latest on the new great addition to the Secret Fort Core Team, Maria Civitate.
The queen of GIFs, master of puns, and thrifting fashionista … We’re starting the new year off with a new face in the Fort as Maria Civitate joins us as Account Director.
As Account Director, Maria will work with clients to connect consumer insight with business objectives. She brings top-ranked agency experience leading marketing programs for Fortune 500 companies and major brands to her new role.
Maria is a digital marketing professional that has collaborated and delivered successful marketing for brands like Gatorade, Sprint and Southwest Airlines. We took some time to find out how her journey led her to Secret Fort.
Q: What brought you to Secret Fort?
A: I was drawn to Secret Fort's business model because it’s unique and compelling. It’s especially interesting given the shifts we’re seeing in the industry right now—shops are being consolidated, clients are taking work in-house and ultimately the industry is really shaking up the way agencies and clients work together in an effort to achieve better results.
Initially, I was freelancing here at Secret Fort, and then as I started spending more time with the team, I felt at home here. It’s a genuine, fun group of people. There are no hidden agendas, there’s clearly one common goal and there are just good vibes flowing freely. That energy was refreshing and contagious—it pulled me in and I’m really glad it did.
Q: What part of this job are you most excited about?
A: I’m most excited to work in a different model and get scrappy. There’s no flashiness, no frills, no egos, but a ton of heart. I’m always drawn to that strong, underdog story—and I think we’re writing a great one with the team here at Secret Fort.
Q: What are you most proud of in your career to date?
A: I was recently catching up with an old direct report and he said, “I view all of my successes as an extension of your success because of everything that you taught me.” At that moment I was deeply humbled—it was definitely the most rewarding day of my career so far.
Q: Who inspires you and why?
A: When I reflect on the people who have had the most profound effect on my career I think about a group of incredibly bold, strong, audacious, humble and hilarious women. I’m lucky to have had these trailblazers pave the way for me. I’ve watched moms, wives, sisters and daughters overcome seemingly insurmountable challenges. Watching and learning from them has given me strength and inspires me to take on whatever lies ahead.
Q: What are your hopes for our industry as a whole?
A: My hope is that the industry continues to shift and put an emphasis on equity and authenticity. When I talk about equity I’m talking about for employees, women, pay, people who look different and people who think differently. I hope to see this industry become a refuge for people who refuse to follow the status quo. I think it is an absolutely amazing and beautiful creative industry and it has the power to shape culture—but to do that we need to have more brave people from diverse backgrounds who are willing to help us do things the right way. I want to see more brands push to have that kind of representation—not only in their staff but in the work that they put forward.
Q: Any thoughts on what the future of advertising may be like in the next couple of years?
A: We'll continue to see an emphasis from brands on social responsibility. That shift is going to be evident in not only what brands are saying, but more importantly in what they’re doing. It’s exciting to see the next generation become one that doesn’t just accept what people say, but one that demands to see action. Social corporate responsibility is going to continue to be prevalent. More broadly, I believe we’ll see a rising number of brands take stances on a variety of issues in order to stay relevant and relatable to increasingly socially conscious consumers.
Q: Something most people don’t know about you?
A: I have been crazy about thrifting since I was a kid. We didn’t have a ton of money growing up but I loved fashion and was always drawn to it. Thrift stores gave me an outlet to put together something that looks cool, unique and personal, allowing me to express myself through style and clothing, but in a way that I could afford to do it at the same time.
About a year ago I took that passion and turned it into a small side hustle and opened my own vintage shop on Etsy called Middle Scout!
Everyone here at Secret Fort is happy to have Maria on the team!
To discover more about Secret Fort email firstname.lastname@example.org
Secret Fort Creative Writer