Latina Ad Exec Daisy Expósito-Ulla Talks Building a Business

With my husband and son at famed 11 Madison Avenue.

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LBT: Daisy with respect to business-growth, please tell us about the factors and the people who most influenced the growth of your business…

On the set of the Census Campaign shoot with Edward James Olmos.One major factor, of course, is timing. Being at the confluence of this New America.

Even if there may exist a trend for consolidation, the strengths of an independent are many. We leverage those strengths.

Then, there’s the team. I couldn’t be here if it weren’t for them: Gloria Constanza is the single, most capable shaper of the Hispanic media landscape. Fernando Fernández and Louis Maldonado are seasoned account leaders.

John Ross is a Chief Financial Officer who had lived in both worlds having developed his chops at Young & Rubicam and Bravo. And recently-joined partners, such as Paco Olavarrieta, who is a world-class creative. This is a visionary group of people―hard-working, consistent and resilient. It is easy for Jorge and for me, no matter how large the challenges, when you know that the commitment is solid.

I mean both commitment to the goals of the agency and to the goals of the clients who’ve given us their trust. And then, of course, there’s the next-generation component that makes our group strong. The young among us are the fuel that takes us to the stars.

Chosen as one of “Las 25 más poderosas” (25 most powerful women) by People en Español. Here with Armando Correa, Editor in Chief.LBT: Daisy please share how you balance the work-life challenges…what have been the rewards.

I think I can describe myself as the kind of workaholic who sees her work as an extension of her life. That’s at the core of our drive―both Jorge’s and mine.

The rewards have been plenty―both professionally and emotionally. And many of them come from feeling and behaving as part of the community we serve.

Giving back to our Hispanic segment by way of helping give them a voice, by understanding some inherent social obligations, by celebrating the cultural contributions that can only come from diversity―in a way, by respecting those who justify what we do.

Commitment

Jorge and I at Noma Mexico, Tulum. Our most recent vacation.We project this commitment through the work of many specific organizations―both Latino and non-Latino―in which we participate: 4A’s, AEF, AHAA, Spanish Repertory Theatre, just to mention a few. It’s quite a long list and mentoring, of course, is part of a mission that’s never finished for me.

My father was always socially concerned.

Helping others was not a charity thing for him but part of the moral obligation to show solidarity. I’ve been lucky, which probably means I have to give more. I have a son who graduated with honors from NYU, is working on his MFA from Columbia and is already a writer at 28.

My husband and I are into our fourth decade of a successful collaborative marriage. But I’ve also seen pain in life and in people, like with my father’s Alzheimer’s and his sudden disconnection to the world around him.

I’ve seen it in the quick passing of my in-laws and other friends, and relatives. Supporting good causes, helping people in need and mentoring young talent from a professional perspective are the kind of rewards that give reason to the journey.

LBT: Daisy what advice would you have for other Latinos who might want to start a business? Any favorite saying?

My husband, me, my sister Maritza, my brother-in-law, Steve, my son Gabriel, Candace, Gabriel’s girlfriend and my Mom, our queen, who turned 92 this year.Dare. ¡Atrévanse! Yes, you can.

There’ll be countless obstacles but there’ll always be solutions. If you fall down once, get up twice. If I could turn back the clock knowing what I now know of course there are things that I’ll do differently but I would never doubt the motivations that moved me or the energy that ignited the materialization of the dream.

Inform yourself well. Don’t be afraid to ask. Arm yourself with optimism and a great sense of humor.

Don’t panic―you are Hispanic! 

Related articles:

Part 1: Latina Business Leader Spotlight on Ad Exec Daisy Expósito-Ulla

A Latina’s Start-up and Business Execution

Latina Entrepreneur on Business Growth and Work-Life Balance

Latina Entrepreneur Turns a Crisis Into a New Career Catalyst

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