Daniel Presnell

Vice President, Strategy and Creative

Trained as a storyteller, Daniel employs a nuanced understanding of setting, scene, conflict and character to bring the ideas, values and the actions of people and institutions to life.

A communicator with 15 years of experience, Daniel comes to Signals from his most recent position as Communications Manager at the University of British Columbia Faculty of Medicine. There he used creativity and critical thinking to deliver a broad set of both traditional and digital communications that raise the profile of the Faculty of Medicine in the communities they serve.

As a listener, interviewer and public speaker, Daniel believes that creating trust and equity between all participants can facilitate meaningful dialog, and lead us to new ideas and understanding. He can articulate complex ideas clearly, think visually, find creative solutions to challenges, and collaborate with diverse partners to realize our goals. Daniel has an MFA from the University of Massachusetts.

Rob MacDougall

Vice President, Project Marketing

Rob is responsible for the planning and execution of all Signals’ digital projects, websites and campaigns. His depth and breadth of experience makes him a wonderful resource for clients seeking to integrate traditional marketing and communications techniques with the latest digital tools.

Rob works closely with our senior communicators to lead our clients through the entire digital strategy, planning, and development process, ensuring the result is a rich and positive user experience. He is well versed in user experience design (UX), accessibility and usability guidelines, search engine optimization (SEO) and social media trends and implementation strategies. His experience with a multitude of content management systems (CMS) ensures that the right system is matched to the clients’ needs.

Rob joined us from real estate project marketing agency Braun/Allison where he was responsible for the coordination and completion of dozens of websites and digital campaigns.

Rob has a degree in Business Administration from Acadia University where he was also a hotshot varsity football player — a Signals first!

John Belisle

Creative Director

John brings strength in conceptual-based design and extensive experience in design and advertising.

He has worked with a number of Vancouver agencies and studios on a wide range of projects, including advertising for Tourism British Columbia, the North Shore Credit Union and the BC Lions, and design for the Vancouver Canucks, Terasen Gas, Telus and Teekay Shipping. John has also worked on many non-profit projects, including branding for the Tour De Delta and the Vancouver Firefighters Union 9-11 relief fund campaign.

A graduate of the Emily Carr Institute of Art + Design, John has a strong base in fine art and illustration which appears in some of his Signals work. He created the illustrations for a Vancouver Opera campaign and designed and illustrated capabilities brochures for The Heart Centre and The Renal Program at St. Paul’s Hospital. John designed the series of International Bid Books which were part of Vancouver’s successful bid for the 2010 Olympics and developed a series of custom illustrations for the Singleton Urquhart law firm which formed the basis of Signals’ brand renewal program for the firm. John was the principal designer for dozens of annual reports and was the principal designer for the CLBC Start With Hi campaign.

John’s first children’s book, In God’s Kitchen, was published to very favourable reviews. His popular tee-shirt illustrations for Ironhead, a local Vancouver retailer, have also gained international attention, with People magazine featuring a photo of Halle Berry wearing one of his original designs.

Mike Savage

Studio Director

A graduate of the Christchurch Polytech Art & Design Visual Communications program, Mike started his career in New Zealand as an art director for national consumer and professional brands. In 2006, he travelled to Vancouver and found a home-away-from-home working at Signals.

During his time at Signals, Mike has contributed to projects for almost all of Signals’ clients — delivering value on project work with strategic, creative, design, production, management, and photography expertise.

As Studio Director, Mike manages the overall operations of our busy studio and is responsible for helping our multi-disciplinary team deliver exceptional work.

Kumiko Ide

Director, Strategy

Kumiko is an award-winning marketer with over a decade of agency experience and a strong understanding of digital tools, social platforms, SEO, and mobile technology. She joins Signals with a proven track record of building and overseeing integrated programs that utilize both paid and earned media.

Prior to establishing her own consultancy in 2013, Kumiko led a digital strategy and social media team at DDB Canada. She has collaborated with notable organizations such as Destination Canada and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and spearheaded marketing efforts for U.S. retail giant Nordstrom during its launch into Canada. Kumiko has also served as an instructor with Simon Fraser University’s Digital Communications program, and is the 2011 recipient of the Notable Young Professional Award for Social Media.

James Baker

Lead Interactive Developer

James is a Drupal specialist who joined Signals after six years with a local digital agency. James’ goal is to make smart websites that engage, delight, and sustain.

A hands on programmer, James brings a wealth of experience having since 1998 produced work for clients like Nintendo America, Disney, the Magazine Association of BC, the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver and Windset Farms.

James lives in Drupal, WordPress, PHP, standards-based XHTML, CSS and jQuery, and has considerable expertise in interface design, information architecture, usability, functional design, SEO design and strategy and CMS development and configuration.

James has a BA in English Literature from the University of Winnipeg and a BDes from Emily Carr University in Electronic Communication Design where he has also taught New Media and Advanced Web Design for five years.

In addition to the above, James has in the last year, attempted the chocolate Guinness whiskey cake, and the now legendary James Joyce donut upside down cake, which he has been known to share with his officemates and lucky visitors.

Libby Beck

Office Administrator

As a graduate of the the Emily Carr College of Art and Design Libby focussed on graphic design and later ceramic arts, selling her pottery around BC before shifting to administrative roles working for a law firm and an independent grocery store and most recently as Executive Administrator for a national charitable organization.

As an administrative pro she anticipates issues before they become issues, and excels at thinking through potential angles, choke points, and opportunities. With a strong background in detail oriented work and experience managing and improving systems in high volume environments Libby is the go-to person for Signals’ financial and administrative systems.

John Hall

Production Designer

John comes to Signals from Portland Oregon where he spent 10+ years on big brands like Nike, Columbia, Microsoft, and Jeld-Wen as a Graphic Designer specializing in all aspects of print production. He enjoys producing quality designs that inspire and motivate, all while managing to elevate the brand or “the big idea”.

Receiving a degree in Visual Communications at the Art Institute of Seattle, he was able to learn and work along side talented instructors who also worked in the industry. This gave him real life training in what it takes to produce professional quality work.

His passion for print design also extends into the art world where he brings those same qualities to figurative and landscape paintings.

Victoria Lee

Communications Designer

Victoria is a communication designer who focuses to intervene in social and cultural challenges through co-creative systems design as she believes that design is a collaborative and powerful tool for change. Influenced by the range of obscurity, quirk and placidness in Japanese culture, her approach to design thinking and everyday living is explorative and inquisitive.

Victoria joins Signals from Mogo Financial Technology Inc. where she brings her experience of direct collaboration with the company’s marketing, front and back-end development and product teams and external partners such as Postmedia to ideate and build a strong brand identity and quality products.

In addition to having learned new ways to efficiently manage her finances, Victoria continues to volunteer as BC Lymphedema Association’s social media strategist and designer to educate, create awareness, and connect people with lymphedema.

Kyla Leslie

Communications & Client Relations Manager

Kyla brings a diverse professional background that spans communications, marketing, writing and brand management. Trained as a journalist, she uses her passion for research and engagement to gain a deep understanding of each client to inform branding and communications strategies.

An accomplished writer, Kyla brings a fine-tuned ability to distill complex information into accessible, engaging narrative. Prior to joining Signals, Kyla led multidisciplinary teams on print and digital projects for clients across the real estate, non-profit, tourism and lifestyle sectors.

Kyla studied journalism at Carleton University, digital project management at UBC and is currently completing a degree in professional communications at Royal Roads University.

Motoki Naito

Developer

Motoki is a front-end developer specializing in animation with CSS and Javascript.
His goal is to build beautiful and seamlessly functional websites with interactive elements.
He graduated with a degree in Information Sciences from Onomichi City University in Japan,
and took a web development and design course at ITD Canada to further hone his web skills.

Motoki has worked on several design projects for clients in the branding, retail and food industries.
He also authors a blog on his web development experiences to share his expertise to guide other budding web developers.

Before arriving to Canada in 2016, Motoki worked as a web developer for a design firm in Japan.
He has experience working with HTML5, CSS3, SASS, Javascript, jQuery, GSAP, React.js, Redux,
Ajax, PHP, MySQL, JSON, Gulp, Git, WordPress, Bootstrap, Foundation, WebAPI, Responsive Design, Photoshop and Illustrator. Motoki is constantly building and coding to master new languages and tools to bring to his skill sets.

When he is not creating digital projects at his desk, Motoki is out playing basketball games, doing yoga, and working out at the gym.

Mahafrine Petigara

Communications Manager

Mahafrine has extensive experience developing, implementing, and managing communications projects and managing teams for client accounts across diverse industry sectors, most notably, health and research communications. 

With more than 10 years in the business, she brings a variety of communications and marketing skills to her role at Signals. Her experience includes providing research and analysis, developing strategic communications plans, copywriting, managing cross-functional teams for integrated campaigns, and managing projects and client relationships. 
 
Mahafrine excels at translating complex information into clear, concise and compelling narratives to help organizations tell stories that resonate with their audiences. She is also skilled at working with multiple stakeholders from government representatives, to health professionals, researchers, academics, and patients. She put these talents to good use for many years for one of her major clients, the BC Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS (BC-CfE), Canada’s largest HIV/AIDS research, treatment, and education facility. With a strong grasp over the research-based content, sound judgment, and strategic storytelling, Mahafrine successfully positioned the BC-CfE and its researchers as world-renowned pioneers in the fight against HIV and AIDS. 
  
Mahafrine has a B.A. in Sociology and an LL.B degree from Mumbai, India. She holds a diploma in public relations from Kwantlen Polytechnic University and a certificate in Project Management for Digital Communications from the University of British Columbia.

Shan Robertson

Interactive Developer

Shan brings a wealth of experience to our interactive team. A graduate of the Interactive Design program at Capilano University, he honed his development skills working as a freelancer for a number of well known Vancouver agencies.

Shan’s development work on prominent local real estate marketing websites will be particularly helpful to Signals clients in this sector.

Shan sees new projects in different sectors area as a path to continuously improving his products and his expertise. He is particularly interested in the application of mobile techniques on the web and introducing app behaviours to browser-based websites.

Kiera Schwegler

Producer

Kiera is a dog lover and marketing producer, in that order. She has combined her love of
creative thinking with her passion for organization into a career of overseeing marketing
projects. Her history has taken her through many different industries, from tech to real estate to
insurance, but always with a focus on creating eye-catching work and keeping everything in line
while she does it. Her degree in Communications helps her understand marketing platforms and
connect with others in a meaningful way; she especially loves to take big ideas and make them
consumable yet thought provoking.

Kiera thrives on change, focuses on adapting, and likes to move fast. Her past work has allowed
her to hone her skills in project planning and resource management, brand strategy and digital
marketing. Having worked with both major corporations and owner-operator businesses, she
understands that marketing is not “one size fits all”, and loves to help businesses showcase
themselves at their best.

When she isn’t working, Kiera is looking for new creative outlets. A great way to get her attention is to strike up a conversation about your favourite sitcom, travel destinations, great restaurants, or the last book you read.

Peter Szymczak

Technical Manager

Peter is a passionate technologist with a special ability to bridge business and technical project objectives to catalyze return on investment for clients. With a background in web development, he excels at mobilizing our development team around innovative and efficient solutions and turning complex project requirements into simple and elegant web products leveraging the latest technologies.

He brings to Signals over a decade of technical, project management, and client service experience gained developing digital projects for clients in a variety of industries. During his time at Signals, he has produced work for notable clients such as Westbank, Methanex, UN AIDS, St. Paul’s Hospital Foundation, and the Greater Vancouver Board of Trade.

Peter holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Simon Fraser University in Political Science and History, and is currently an MBA Candidate in the Management of Technology MBA program at Simon Fraser University’s Beedie School of Business.

Shantas Wong

Business Coordinator

Shantas brings a blended background in executive administrative support and recruitment. Prior to joining Signals, she had a decade-long career in recruitment hiring the best talent for top local organizations in healthcare, government, non-profit, and real-estate sectors.

As Signals’ people person, she naturally brings a passion for people and culture. She champions the human resource and recruitment initiatives for the studio, and she also wears a business development hat.

In her spare time, when she’s not working on her culinary skills, she can be found in nature trail running on local mountains, planning her next travel adventure, or on a quest to find the best ramen soup.

Paul Cheetham

Paul brings substantial business management and financial expertise, along with strong leadership skills to his role as President of Signals. He has a track record of high performance in the private banking sector, primarily as a consultant to corporations and affluent families in Vancouver.

Paul has extensive experience in training and leading teams and has been recognized by his peers for his outstanding leadership. Currently, Paul focuses on his financial consultancy, advising and developing investment strategies for local and international clients. He is a graduate of Harvard Business School where he completed executive leadership studies.

An entrepreneur at heart, Paul sees tremendous potential for growth in Signals. He was drawn to the firm’s strategic approach to communications and sees Signals as a company with the right mix of capabilities to thrive in the digital age.

Paul volunteers as a member of the Finance Committee with the BC Council for Families, a Provincial Agency that designs and implements educational programs for young families. He is also a member of the Harvard Club of British Columbia and Financial Planners Standard Council.

Like all Signals people, Paul has a creative side and a unique claim to fame: he played guitar in a Pearl Jam tribute band while working with one of the largest telecom companies in Australia. Ever the adventurer, he is now a licensed pilot who still enjoys the guitar. Paul and his wife, also a musician, have two young children.

Rochelle MacDonald

Dr Rochelle Macdonald is a Senior Strategy & Development Executive with highly developed skills in Strategic Planning, improving business processes, developing new markets, developing new business opportunities, leading complex commercial negotiations and optimizing revenue.

Highly effective team builder and leader who optimises the contribution and commitment of team members and who is able to grow and lead a substantial business unit through major transformational change. Developed and led major projects, negotiated multi-million dollar agreements, secured new revenue, influenced major multi-national corporations and have a reputation for focusing diverse stakeholders on common objectives.

As the Founding Director of Elemental Strategy, an Australian-based strategy, implementation & change consulting firm, she has helped organizations resolve leadership, environmental, engineering, geology and strategy issues and implement change.

Rochelle is also heavily involved in physical fitness and health as a highly ranked competitor in international, national and state fitness competitions, a coach and strategy workshop facilitator for fitness organizations

Taylor Agisim

Mr. Agisim has successfully navigated a global career, working in seven cities (New York, London, Paris, Johannesburg, Dubai, Shanghai, and Abu Dhabi) developing a truly global network. Throughout his career, Mr. Agisim has worked in companies of varying sizes and industries, beginning his career in Investment Banking and Private Equity, working for HSBC, the government of Dubai Sovereign Fund, Istithmar and portfolio company Gulf Stream.

Mr. Agisim gained valuable experience in the sports and entertainment industry in college, where he interned for the New York Jets. Five years ago, Mr. Agisim transitioned his full-time career from finance to entertainment when he moved to Shanghai, China to join AEG Worldwide. During his tenure, he worked closely with the CEO to develop a regional expansion model, including acquisition of new venues and global touring talent and supported on the development of the Asia business plan and financial model for the proposed sale of the company. Mr. Agisim also supported the President of Music on shifting the business from a one-off China event to an Asian touring model.

For the past three and a half years, Mr. Agisim has worked in the Middle East for the Government of Abu Dhabi as the New Business Manager for FLASH Entertainment. The UAE is actively building the brand of the country through providing world-class entertainment locally and investing globally. FLASH is at the heart of this endeavor, owning a 10% stake in the UFC, partnership with Ticketmaster Middle East and actively developing world-class content across the Middle East.

Marcelo Gomez-Wiuckstern

Seasoned, award-winning communications, public affairs, reputation management, media & stakeholder relations executive with experience leading integrated communications and public affairs strategies in the for-profit and not-for-profit sectors in English, French and Spanish.

Specialized in the development and execution of institutional internal and external communications programs, issues management, and media/stakeholder/government relations strategies to manage corporate reputations, build staff engagement and achieve strategic business objectives.

Conceives and implements successful strategic communications plans, earned and paid media campaigns, including traditional and digital media, and brand management programs to elevate the brand and increase the profile of the organization.

Matt Novak

Matt has extensive experience in start ups an institutional finance. Initially a practicing finance lawyer at Clifford Chance, he migrated to investment banking where he joined one of Dresdner Kleinwort’s most profitable EM divisions and went on to run the Emerging Markets team at Commerzbank AG byway of succession. Matt also served as Managing Director at AFG where he focused on EM debt and equity, high tech, as well as the strategic deployment of capital to macro trends.

Matt currently holds roles at InvestDen a UK online investment platform, Duet Group, a USD 5.6bn alternative investment manager and Senior Advisor to ED&F Man. He has successfully executed billions of dollars worth of capital market transactions.

Matt holds a BHSC from Western University, a Juris Doctor from University of Windsor Ontario and is Alumni of the Executive Management Program from Harvard Business School.

Team

We are driven by a passion for the quality of our craft, delivering strategic and creative solutions that fulfill your brand promise.

Daniel Presnell

Vice President, Strategy and Creative

Rob MacDougall

Vice President, Project Marketing

John Belisle

Creative Director

Mike Savage

Studio Director

Kumiko Ide

Director, Strategy

James Baker

Lead Interactive Developer

Libby Beck

Office Administrator

John Hall

Production Designer

Victoria Lee

Communications Designer

Kyla Leslie

Communications & Client Relations Manager

Motoki Naito

Developer

Mahafrine Petigara

Communications Manager

Shan Robertson

Interactive Developer

Kiera Schwegler

Producer

Peter Szymczak

Technical Manager

Shantas Wong

Business Coordinator

Advisory Board

Paul Cheetham

Rochelle MacDonald

Taylor Agisim

Marcelo Gomez-Wiuckstern

Matt Novak