2021 Connect Corporate 15 Over 50: Joanne Brooks

Brooks is the President of Creative Impact Group.

2021 Connect Corporate 15 Over 50: Joanne Brooks

Joanne Brooks

President, Creative Impact Group
Based in:
Chicago

How I got here: After college, I began my career in the fashion industry as a model. My background was as a professional performer in musical theater, so I combined fashion and music to develop a new genre of fashion shows—a Broadway-style musical fashion revue. Our troupe of performers toured the country at shopping centers and malls. We also performed for charity fundraisers. When I produced shows for corporate clients such as Levi's, my clients began asking for production services for their events. These services included entertainment, sound, staging, lighting, costuming, and room and floral decor. With my background, it was an easy transition to production for events. We are now a total resource—a supplier to marketing agencies, VPs of marketing, meeting planners, event managers and trade show managers. We can provide whatever is needed for a successful event—entertainment, decor, personnel, giveaways and more.

Greatest career accomplishment: Developing a ‘Brand Theater’ show format. Whether the client needs a musical production number, comedy sketches or scripting, Brand Theater is great infotainment. It not only motivates at a sales meeting, it extends to trade shows. Our magicians, games and other theatrical presentations are wonderful booth attractions and lead generators. Brand Theater is all about branding and communication. If a company or fundraising organization wishes to incorporate a sponsor's product or service, Brand Theater can highlight that product or service. It is the perfect solution.

A specific improvement I’ve made: I really enjoy mentoring younger talent so that they can learn the business and better sell themselves. Whether they are magicians, comedians or models, the performers need to build their portfolio in order to showcase their talent.

What I do outside of work: I promote the arts and attend theater, opera, concerts and the symphony. I am also actively involved in the Benjamin Marshall Society, which features the accomplishments of Chicago architect Benjamin Marshall.

What I'd tell my younger self: ‘Follow your passion and keep up with all trends in your industry.’ ‘Never give up! Set goals and go after them.’

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