Carol Summerfield, Senior Brand & Communications Strategist
In her primary role, Carol provides strategic planning for clients, helping them identify opportunities to expand reach and strengthen audience connection in order to more effectively communicate, motivate and inspire target audiences.
Through her strategic work, she brings a business-centered focus for marketing as it intersects and supports sales, operations and ultimately adds to the bottom line.
Carol is a published author and speaker who has provided strategic planning for museum, education, and cause-focused clients, helping them identify opportunities to expand their audience reach, improve their communication to disparate communities, and incorporate new technology cost-effectively to enhance the client’s narrative.
As a thought leader, Carol hosts “Beyond Brick and Mortar,” a salon series which bring together the leading voices in American museums to discuss and share ideas around the concept of advancing the way museums support their mission and reach a wider audience. She also manages the Museum Revolution blog, where she writes about the rapidly changing landscape of the museum world.
Carol is a graduate of Northwestern University with a B.A. in Creative Writing.
Jens Schlueter, Digital Marketing + Business Development Strategist
In his current role, Jens focuses on business strategy, digital marketing and consumer insights. He brings a unique and pragmatic approach to the work he does for clients.
His perspective is always balanced with innovative, creative thinking and a passion for understanding and applying advances in technology to ultimately enhance business performance and drive tangible results.
A long history of proven client successes has led him to be nicknamed the “Growth Hacker” by those who have worked with him and benefited from his expertise.
Jens is a graduate of Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania, with a BA, Marketing, and a Minor in German. He also studied at and participated in the Universität Salzburg Exchange Program with an emphasis on International Communications.
Mary Jo Bohr, Communication Strategist & Writer
Mary Jo helps our clients connect powerfully with their audiences … through smart strategy, creativity and deft writing. She’s advised and written for scores of C-level executives and their teams, in sectors ranging from financial services to industrial/manufacturing to food, energy and more. She holds an M.B.A. from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School, an M.A. from the University of Minnesota, and a B.A. (Honors) from Loyola University Chicago.
Mirka Illasova, Public Relations / Social Media Strategist
Mirka leads all of our public relations and social media efforts.
She has an extensive portfolio working with clients of all colors and sizes and her multi-language, cross-cultural experience allow her to bring fresh ideas to table.
Mirka’s experience stretches across variety of industries including travel, hospitality, lifestyle, sports/wellness, fashion, entertainment and finance.
As a social media strategist she approaches each client with attention to detail and delivers customized solutions. She is an expert when it comes to media outreach, social media management, new product launches, influencer outreach and strategic partnerships.
Nandini Austin, Marketing, Business Development Strategist & Writer
Nandini has nearly 20 years of experience working within the culinary, luxury lifestyle & hospitality industries. Her work has helped shape some of the world’s most iconic hotel brands, upscale restaurants and bars in the U.S. and globally. She has held key business development and marketing roles within organizations such as Morgan’s Hotel Group, The Metropolitan Hotel, Park Lane London, Colin Cowie Celebrations & Chefs Club.
Her vivacious personality engages others and, through strategic storytelling, her writing enables clients to authentically connect with their audiences in meaningful and relevant ways. Nandini is passionate about spotting new trends, launching products & services. She loves finding ways to reach new audiences through marketing strategy and innovative social media content.
Nandini believes that a strategic approach to social media content, delivered through highly targeted tactics ultimately enables companies to acquire new customers and sell their brands. The work Nandini does within social media, writing and creating content rich video helps clients tell their story to the right audience in the right place at the right time. She uses her industry insights, connections and resources to validate strategy and writing resonate with target audiences.
Nandini currently is a resident of New York City and is a graduate of London South Bank University, U.K.
Patrick Dages, Writer, Editor & Content Manager
Pat is the primary lead for writing, editing and content management. He is responsible for the behind the scenes work involved in site audits, copy deck creation and organization, content migration and QA testing.
Prior to coming to Method Engine, Pat worked as a legal editor after receiving a J.D. degree. His other editorial work includes working as a newspaper correspondent, wire service reporter and freelance copy editor of trade magazine articles, marketing research reports and fiction and nonfiction books.
Jessica Zimmer, Design Director
Jessica Zimmer serves as Design Director at Method Engine. Jessica’s vast design vocabulary and keen eye for detail are vital to each project’s visual success. She honed these skills at Columbia College Chicago and moved on to design and art direction positions in publishing, branding, packaging and advertising where she specialized in delivering high-end design results before partnering with her husband Jim to start their own boutique branding and design studio.
Jeff Powers, Senior Client Services & Media Manager
Jeff is the Senior Client Services & Senior Media Manager for Method Engine, concentrating on strategy, placement and analytics in search and display channels. Previous to Method Engine, Jeff was the Digital Strategy Manager at ESW Partners overseeing search and display placement for Taco Bell, KFC and clients in the financial/insurance vertical. Previous digital marketing and placement experience in the insurance vertical was with National Professional Group (NPG) providing online access to professional liability to association memberships. As Digital Account Manager, Jeff supervised on and off page SEO efforts for each portal as well as search and display advertising placement.
Drew Pyle, Media Director
Drew is an experienced leader in the marketing and advertising industry. Of all of his professional interests he is most passionate about the interactive media space and all things digital. Drew has a special interest in media metrics and analytics and loves to put data to work to improve our clients’ businesses. Drew brings a great deal of digital media planning and buying experience to his role as Media Director. He has worked across many different verticals and he most notably has a great deal of automotive experience both on the OEM side (Ford Motor Company) and on the agency side (where he ran digital media planning and buying for his client Mercedes-Benz USA). As Media Director, Drew heads up our media planning, buying, and strategy efforts including display advertising, pay-per-click advertising, search engine optimization, and media insights and analytics.
Zach Weiner, Senior Interactive Director
Multi-faceted in design, technology and creative talents, Zach brings a wide array of accomplished skills to the team. His focus and strength in fine art, interaction design, illustration, package design and photography lends itself well to fulfill on a range of creative needs of clients.
With nearly 20 years of experience as a creative professional, Zach is highly skilled at developing innovative online and offline solutions, ultimately delivering transformative business results. Zach’s specific expertise includes Brand Strategy and Implementation, Information Architecture, Creative Problem Solving rooted in Strategy, Adaptive/Responsive Website Design & Development, CMS Platform Implementation, UI/UX Design, Traditional Print-based Graphic Design, Business Photography and Illustration.
Zach has worked with a number of cutting edge organizations in key creative roles at Tandem Multimedia Partners, marchFIRST, TMP Worldwide and Austin Knight. His client experience includes both Fortune 500 companies as well as many mid-tier brands including Lake Cable, Johnny’s Ice House, World Book, The Adoption Center, Anixter and PeerPoint Medical Education to name a few. Zach holds a BFA in Visual Communications from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago.
Jim Zimmer, Executive Creative Director
Jim Zimmer serves as Executive Creative Director at Method Engine. Along with his role as Method Engine’s strategic partner, Jim builds brands and websites out of his boutique design studio with his wife Jessica. Jim’s client experience is vast, working with a collection of brands both large and small including Google, YouTube, Harley Davidson, 3 Floyds Brewing, Accenture, David Barton Gym, Blue Chip Casino, John Marshall Law School, USG, Baxter, Takeda, Abbott, Dentsply and Mikkeller.
John Bauman, Technology Director
John is a formally trained software engineer and rich media specialist. Over the past 30 years he has designed, architected, and programmed multimedia projects, web applications and industrial software in many fields including engineering, medicine, business, education, and advertising. He has extensive experience working with a variety of programming languages, web and mobile technologies, and media types. He is also well-versed in interface architecture and design.
Since John began his career in 1986 he has worked for several companies, including IBM, McDonnell Douglas, William M. Mercer, Cognitive Arts, marchFIRST, and Tandem Multimedia Partners. Past clients include Pacific Bell, Young & Rubicam, Motorola, General Electric, The Order People, The U.S. Postal Service, Lake Cable, PeerPoint Medical Education, and many others.
In 1993, John earned his Master’s in Telecommunication from Michigan State University, where he specialized in the study and application of multimedia and virtual reality technology. John received his Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science from Michigan State University in 1986.
Steve Zoppi, Partner, Chief Technology Officer
Steve is the master of all things technology at Method Engine.
Steve brings more than 30 years of technology leadership experience both as an executive-level technology practitioner and a recognized industry analyst. Steve served as Chief Technology Officer at Sportvision, Inc. the pioneer and leader in real-time data acquisition, advanced visualization and augmented reality enhancements of broadcast sporting events. Previously, Steve has served as Chief Information Officer at TiVo Inc., the industry pioneer of Digital Video Recording, and as vice president of Operations for Hotwire, Inc, a leading online provider of discount travel. In 1999, Steve was awarded the distinction of META Group Research Fellow. Prior to this position, Steve held senior technology and programming management positions at Adobe Systems, Oracle Corporation, IBM, NASA/Ames Research Center, Esprit de Corp and Software AG of North America. Steve also guest lectures regularly at UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business on a variety of technologies and technology-related business trends.
Steve Arbaugh, Chief Strategy Officer & Client Partner
Steve Arbaugh serves as Chief Strategy Officer & Client Partner at Method Engine.
Steve is a veteran marketer with an extensive and esteemed background. His past experience includes the role of principal at VSA Partners, one of the most prestigious design firms in the US.
Steve left VSA to join one of his longest standing clients, Interface Companies pioneers and leaders in sustainability. Steve worked with and alongside many people at Interface including Ray Anderson, dubbed the “father of sustainability”. During his time with Interface, he was immersed in sustainability business strategy, planning, marketing & communications. His expertise focused on online, in-person and print mediums targeted at investors, media, prospective & current customers and internal employees.
Steve’s client experience is extensive, working with some of the most recognized brands in the world including US WEST/Qwest, IBM, Steelcase/Turnstone, InCapital, Telwares Communications, Cingular Wireless, Allstate, Eli Lilly, Brunswick, Harley-Davidson, Discover Card, Mills Corporation, Leo Burnett, Aetna, Weber Grills, Quantum Printing, First Data Corporation, Mead/Westvaco, BIC Corp, Lands’ End, Blain’s Farm & Fleet, Ameritech.
John Zoppi, Managing Partner
John leads the charge in business development for Method Engine.
John’s career began in network broadcast production with The American Broadcasting Company in Chicago, working with Oprah Winfrey and Eye On Chicago. Later, John produced commercials for John Deere, Burger King, AT&T, and Citibank.
As Director of Media at Cognitive Arts, John led the content team to produce dynamic rich media that supported cutting-edge simulation-based training systems for Fortune 100 Companies.
As a Digital Account & Business Unit Manager with VSA Partners, one of the top brand and design firms in the country, John worked with some of the most admired and iconic brands in the world, including Harley-Davidson, IBM Global Services, and Land’s End.