2 Minutes With ... Kathleen Nanda, Creative Chief at FCB Health N.Y.
Kathleen, a 12-year veteran of FCB Health N.Y., has spent more than 20 years creating work for marquee brands across a broad range of categories. She began her career in consumer advertising, working for clients such as AT&T, Ford, Citibank, Sprint, Kodak and the U.S. Marine Corps. After discovering healthcare, she eagerly jumped in and never looked back.
Her category experience is vast, and she's created award-winning work for all types of brands, from dermatology to virology. Grounded in a firm belief that creativity has the power to help improve lives, she relentlessly pushes for work that breaks through and changes human behavior in new and unexpected ways.
We spent two minutes with Kathleen to learn more about her background, creative inspirations and some recent work she's admired.
Kathleen, tell us...
Where you grew up, and where you live now.
I'm a New York lifer. Born in Brooklyn, and I have bounced between Brooklyn, Manhattan and the 'burbs ever since.
How you first got interested in health.
When I was a writer in consumer, I got pulled in to help on a women's health project. A spark was immediately lit, and I never looked back.
One of your favorite projects you've ever worked on, and why.
I’'e been lucky to have worked on a lot of great stuff, but one of my favorites is our "Trial for #ClinicalEquality" work. Health inequities run deep. I love when we can use the power of creativity to shine a light on these pervasive problems, and drive toward potentially life-saving solutions.
A recent project you're proud of, and why.
For years, we‘ve been working closely with the Gay Men's Health Crisis (GMHC) to fight for health equality for the LGBTQ+ community, with a focus on blood equality. Two of our most recent campaigns from the "Blood Equality" initiative include "Blood Vessels" and "The Dumb Law Paradox."
Earlier this year, the FDA finally modified the guidelines for blood donation. Although there is still more work to be done, seeing that kind of change after years of hard work is the greatest reward.
One thing about how health is evolving that you're excited about.
Health gets bigger and better every year. There is more innovation, more creativity and more determination to do great work. I love that we’re putting the power of creativity front and center to help change people’s lives.
Someone else's work, in health or beyond, that you admired lately.
Refik Anadol. He's doing some incredibly beautiful and immersive things with data, science and A.I. His work is constantly morphing, and it's mesmerizing.
A book, movie, TV show or podcast you recently found inspiring.
I'm hooked on Succession. Great writing, great acting. Every episode delivers nonstop tension. The characters are all so flawed and power hungry, yet somehow, I keep rooting for them. Except Marcia. She is consistently loathsome in each episode.
A visual artist or band/musician you admire.
I'm always inspired by Kelly Wearstler and her ability to help us see our environment through fresh eyes. I'm very affected by the spaces I inhabit and I love good design. When the design is inspiring, people become inspired. Kelly Wearstler has a unique, offbeat vision. She continually reinvents and reimagines how we live and interact in both public and private spaces. She's had such a long and successful career, and her work keeps getting better and better.
Your favorite fictional character.
Katniss Everdeen. I just binged all the Hunger Games movies, and I couldn't get enough of her. She is fierce.
Someone worth following on social media.
New Yorker cartoons, because we could all use a daily dose of laughter.
Your main strength as a marketer/creative.
Resiliency. You need to be especially resilient in health. Because there is so much regulation, work that you love can all of a sudden die. Just like that. It can be a tough blow. You can't let it stop you.
Your biggest weakness.
I don't know when to quit.
One thing that always makes you happy.
One thing that always makes you sad.
Something people would find surprising about you.
I'm dying to learn how to play the electric harmonica.
What you'd be doing if you weren't in health.
I'd be in the CIA.