LA, the Idea Capital: Conill's CCO, Diego Yurkievich

Diego Yurkievich
Chief Creative Officer Conill

Tell us a bit about yourself and your current role.

I was born in Argentina and moved to the United States in the early ‘90s. Since coming here, I have been fortunate to lead the creative departments of such terrific shops as Global Hue in New York, Alma DDB in Miami, and now in Los Angeles as Chief Creative Officer of Conill, the nation’s largest multicultural agency. My international experience includes roles throughout Latin America and in Europe – Barcelona and Prague.

While that’s all great, what I’m most proud of is my terrific wife Vanesa and my awesome 6-year-old daughter, Mila.


How would you describe the culture of Los Angeles?

It is a forward-looking culture. People here tend to have a view towards what’s next, what’s fresh and new. Trends start here. From movies and music to food and art, what happens in LA influences the rest of the country and beyond. Yes, there is important history here, but it is that optimistic eye towards tomorrow, that defines our progressive cultural orientation.


In what ways does the city of Los Angeles inspire you?

It’s a creative and cultural epicenter surrounded by natural beauty, which is too often overlooked. Street art, modern art, major institutions like MOCA, LACMA and Getty and the new Broad museum – all surrounded by nature – ocean, mountains, agriculture.

I believe the region’s diversity is the driving force behind its passion and continual transformation.


Los Angeles is a hotspot for so many young talents and industry leaders. What has contributed to that?

LA thrives on ideas. It’s a city that nurtures risk and innovation in ideas, no matter what form they come in. We’re not a financial or political capital, we are an ideas capital. Talented young people are drawn here to express themselves. This town nurtures the creative spirit. However, that does not mean it is easy to forge your path. Competition is fierce.


What would you say is the most unique aspect Los Angeles offers agencies?

The LA of today has morphed into a hot bed of talent with a cross-pollinated mindset and skillset. It is one of those rare cites where entertainment, technology, mass communications and big business converge, giving rise to legions of professionals who think about communications in so many new ways. Agencies here can now source talent from non-traditional fields, which is helping to change the very nature of marketing and communications itself.


What is your favorite hidden-gem in Los Angeles?

The growing craft-brewing scene in downtown. I never thought I’d see the day where some of the most exciting beers in country were being produced in our backyard. Best of all, it’s catching on and changing how people enjoy themselves. A thriving bar and restaurant scene is important to the energy and social vitality of any great city. It’s finally become our turn, and the burgeoning craft brewery scene is helping in to make it happen. Take a stroll to the more than 6 breweries that have opened in the past 2-3 years and you’ll see, why in part, younger and older people are flocking to and raving about the changing feel of this town.


If you could change something about Los Angeles, what would it be?

I’d look for ways to make this city more affordable. Talent tends to gravitate towards areas that are dynamic, but also areas that they can afford to live in. LA has quickly become so expensive that many agencies and talent are thinking twice about relocating to more vibrant parts of the city. SF is a great example of how this can play out in a bad way.