VB&P Design Veteran Blake Bäkken Joins mono in San Francisco

By Patrick Coffee 

Minneapolis-based indie agency mono has added some new talent to its San Francisco expansion office by hiring designer Blake Bäkken as a “senior-level” creative.

He joins mono after serving as design director at New York’s “visual identity and packaging design agency” Turner Duckworth and ACD at Siegel+Gale. But Bäkken is very familiar with the Bay Area agency scene after spending more than 13 years at Venables Bell & Partners.

During that extended tenure, he was VB&P’s first design director, overseeing its design department and co-founding strategic and experiential division VBP Orange back in 2012.


“Optimism, honesty and chemistry drew me back westward,” said Bäkken of his decision to return to San Francisco after approximately 18 months away. “This move is the culmination of my experiences in branding firms, design studios and ad agencies and I’m both humbled and honored to join the mono team.”

mono opened its second office less than two years ago to serve West Coast clients like Google, naming agency veterans Jeffrey Gorder (new business), Jane Delworth (group account director) and Paula Maki (creative director) as co-managing partners.

The latter two executives currently run the office, which recently won a review for Stanford Health Care in its biggest new business win to date. The larger organization’s latest win was Loew’s Hotels, which came right after the introduction of monoONE, its new one-year client contract model.

Maki cited the new creative’s “passion for craft and experience both at agencies and design shops” in explaining the hire, adding, “He brings an intensity to visual storytelling that’s a perfect complement to mono’s strategic, design-driven ethos.”