Di Zinno Signs a Trio of Recruits to Key Positions

Following a re organization in April, Di Zinno Thompson Solutions has recruited three top staffers with experience on brands such as Toshiba, Nissan and Microsoft.

The San Diego shop added Jeff Payne as creative director, Jeremy Skiver as new-business director and Robert Johnson as director of consumer insight.

“We have big plans to grow,” said agency president and CEO Tom Di Zinno. “We’ve got good people, but we’re not satisfied. We want better and more.”

Payne, 41, most recently was creative director at DGWB in Santa Ana, Calif. His accounts included Toshiba, which he helped the agency win, Avery and Ocean Pacific. He replaces Rob Petrie, who left in April for Young & Rubicam.

As DZT’s sole creative director, he will oversee all accounts, including Upper Deck Trading Cards, the San Diego Convention & Visitors Bureau, Barona Casino and Intracorp. Trained as an art director, he reports to Di Zinno and oversees 12 staffers.

“The work has been getting better and better over the past couple of years. They’ve added dynamic and talented people, and they’re poised to do some really great things” and hopefully become a national player, Payne said.

Skiver, 32, fills a new position. He was most recently at Bates USA West in Irvine, Calif., and has also worked at TBWA\Chiat\Day and DGWB. His experience includes account management and development work for such clients as Nissan North America, Pro Kennex Tennis, Pacific Sunwear and Mattel Sports.

Johnson, 30, comes from Leagas Delaney in San Francisco and has also worked at McCann-Erickson and Anderson & Lembke. At those shops, he held account planning and management posts, working on such accounts as Microsoft, Adidas, 3Com and Sun Microsystems.

His new post is structured to replace the director of client services position that was eliminated in April along with the account management function, resulting in four layoffs.

DZT plans to add more project management and account strategists and a creative director specializing in copywriting, Di Zinno said.

DZT has over 40 staffers, and claimed 2000 billings of $21 million.