2 Minutes With ... Vinny Tulley, Creative Director at DeVito/Verdi

On The Pro-Choice Public Education Project and the uptick in men getting well-checks

Vinny Tulley is a creative director with extensive healthcare experience who has won multiple Clio Health Awards. His work has been recognized in every major advertising competition, including The One Show, Art Directors Club, Cannes Lions, Communication Arts, OBIE, London International Awards and many more. Vinny also teaches at his alma mater, the School of Visual Arts.

We spent two minutes with Vinny to learn more about his background, his creative inspirations and recent work he's admired.

Vinny, tell us...

Where you grew up, and where you live now.

I spent my early years in Queens and then Elmont, which is on the border of Queens and Long Island. I now reside further east, in the Huntington area of Long Island.

How you first got interested in health.

DeVito Verdi was asked to help out on The Pro-Choice Public Education Project. It was public service meets healthcare, because not only was it about protecting a woman's right to choose and having access to safe, timely, affordable and respectful abortion care, but also about preventing self-induced abortions, which severely injures many women across the world each year. 

One of your favorite projects you've ever worked on.

I've worked on so many in every imaginable category, so it's really hard to pick one, but The Pro-Choice Public Education Project was really special because it was about a great cause.

A recent project you’re proud of.

BayCare Health System came to us with a sad fact: men ages 25-50 don't get yearly check-ups and rarely visit a doctor until it's too late. We created a campaign that ran in the Tampa market during the Super Bowl where loved ones "surprised" their fathers, husbands, boyfriends and brothers by appearing in the commercial telling them how much they were loved and asking them directly, BY NAME, to "please get a check-up." Everyone was in on it EXCEPT the men, whose surprised reactions of seeing their loved ones on TV during the Super Bowl were recorded and then used in phase two of the campaign. Starting that Monday morning, BayCare Health System started getting hundreds of men requesting check-ups.

One thing about how health is evolving that you’re excited about.

Thanks to new technology being created almost daily, we can do a lot more than just "advertise to create awareness for a cause," we can actually create tangible things that actually help people directly. One recent example was "anti-hate keyboards" used in cyber cafes all over the world that were programmed to automatically change toxic phrases and hate language to compliments, greatly reducing cyber-bullying amongst teens. 

Someone else's work, in health or beyond, that you admired lately.

VMLY&R and Dell/Intel created "I Will Always Be Me," a book to help people with motor neurone disease  "bank" their voice, since unfortunately, most will lose the ability to speak. It's a great use of technology that really impacts someone's life. 

A book, movie, TV show, or podcast you recently found inspiring.

Just finished reading Bad Mother F*cker, the Samuel L. Jackson biography. It was amazing to learn just how long and hard he had to work before he "made it," and even more amazing is how hard he still works after he made it. He may be arguably one of the coolest personalities in the world, but he put a ton of blood, sweat and tears into achieving that. He also has three important rules he lives by that we can all learn from: always be on time (early is on time), always be totally prepared for your role and be nice to everyone, regardless of title or position.

A visual artist or band/musician you admire.

AC/DC. Just good, simple rock n' roll. I dare anyone to put on any of their albums and not tap their feet. Maybe that's why they're still selling out arenas in their 50th year as a band.

Your favorite fictional character.

Indiana Jones. All about the triumph of the human spirit. It may not be pretty. He gets beat up. But nothing stops him from achieving his goal.

Someone worth following on social media.

Psychologist Adam Grant. Very smart guy who always has inspiring words.

Your main strength as a marketer/creative.

The experience to come up with effective solutions quickly for whatever problem needs to be solved and creating work that stands out from the crowd, all the while "playing nice with others."

Your biggest weakness.

Caring too much about the work. It still hurts when the client passes on a great idea, or a good idea gets watered down. That's the business. I made peace with it. But that doesn't mean I have to like it.

One thing that always makes you happy.

Spending time with my family. Cliché, I know. But it's true.

One thing that always makes you sad.

Thinking about family members who died much too soon. Sorry for getting heavy, but again, it's my truth.

Something people would find surprising about you.

Just how much I love cats. 

What you'd be doing if you weren't in health.

I have vast experience in almost every category and enjoy working on anything and everything, so I'd still be creating campaigns and finding solutions for someone. But working in health gives you an extra thrill because you're really trying to help people. If something you created can actually help another human being, that's better than any advertising award.

2 Minutes With is our regular interview series where we chat with creatives about their backgrounds, creative inspirations, work they admire and more. For more about 2 Minutes With, or to be considered for the series, please get in touch.

Jessica MacAulay
Jessica MacAulay is a contributor for Muse by Clio. She's also a recent graduate of the University of Colorado Boulder's College of Media, Communication, and Information.

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