Get to know Zachary, Smirk’s Newest Digital Content Specialist
Hello! I’m Zachary, Smirk’s newest Digital Content Specialist. I am excited to join the Smirk family and embark on a fantastic journey with my fabulous new teammates. Here is a little bit about me.
I grew up in a small town called Choctaw, Oklahoma. I spent most of my life in the Oklahoma City Metro, and the culture of central Oklahoma greatly influenced who I have become today. I have many fond memories of my childhood, such as going to the Oklahoma State Fair, seeing animals at the nation’s most excellent zoo and catching a Redhawks game whenever possible (I might be the world’s biggest Rowdy fan.)
Growing up around the turn of the century gave me access to the most significant shift in consumer media I could have imagined. I love all things music, and my collection of personal listening devices will show that. I went from a Sony Walkman to an anti-skip CD player (it still skipped.) I then got my first MP3 player before venturing into iPod territory. Since middle school, I’ve been an avid Spotify user. I joined the beta as soon as I could find an invite code posted on the internet by Pete Wentz.
This love for technology and media spread throughout other interests of mine. I started using Twitter when it was still common to tweet by texting 40404. The possibility of life integrated into a digital sphere has enamored me since middle school. I knew early on that I wanted to do something with my life that incorporated media in the direction it was going.
After graduating high school with a handful of options, I decided to continue my education at The University of Oklahoma. Believe it or not, I initially decided to begin my first semester as a Computer Science major. It seems contradictory to everything I have said thus far, but as I said previously, I wanted to be directly involved in the growing digital community. It turned out I was not very good at coding.
Searching for answers, I joined the Gaylord College of Journalism and Mass Communications, where I began a quick trek into Broadcast Journalism. However, in taking introductory courses at Gaylord, I discovered that I could find what I was looking for in public relations rather than broadcast.
Finding a Home in Communications
When I started studying Strategic Communications, I knew what I was doing was right for me. I could finally see myself involved in a digital media-focused world. I was lucky to collaborate on multiple projects such as case studies, research projects and complete rebranding projects. Through these various tasks, I gained the confidence to implement what I learned in the real world.
Journey to Smirk
I heard about Smirk through a friend and instantly knew I had to check them out. I could see there was something special here when I could tell from the outside that Smirk showed each person involved with the company the same amount of respect and appreciation.
I spent eight years in the service industry, so making genuine connections is second nature. I knew Smirk would be the right place for me since I could make those authentic connections within the community where I grew up.
The Smirk Difference
One of the first things that stood out to me about working with Smirk was The Smirk Difference. Honesty and integrity are paramount virtues in my life. I am honored to work for a company that values people and relationships in the same way that I do personally.
After graduating college, I moved to Oregon with my wife and two cats. We went to the Pacific Northwest for the opportunity and stayed for the environment. One of my passions is film photography, so I will take any chance to make a day trip to the beach or the mountains. Although I love digital content and communications, I also enjoy taking hikes and disconnecting. I will explore any opportunity before me, and I’m very grateful to be in a position to do so.
I am excited to begin my adventure with Smirk and grow in a thriving community where I feel at home.