What we do +
We are strategic thinkers. We evaluate your business or project, research your competitors, establish ways to reach new demographics or engage with existing. We help launch new businesses or brands. We listen carefully to your ideas and goals and expound on them. We come up with even more unique ideas so you don't have to. We are more than just experienced marketers, designers and developers. When you work with us you get a passionate team working to make your business or project a success. Ultimately, we are your partner.
What we don't do +
We don't use templates or old web practices. We don't pass your project off to someone overseas. We don't use designers or developers that don't have degrees, experience and award winning talent.
Who We are +
Located in the historic Lower Garden District of New Orleans, SKUBA was founded by Trace Hayes in 2000 after spending 11 years working in advertising and design. SKUBA brings together a network of both local and regional talent in graphic design, marketing, multimedia, web development, photography and illustration putting together a talented team of experienced creatives for your project.
Get to know us +
Trace HayesCD/Principal Our Founder and Creative Director launched SKUBA Design Studio in 2000 after 11 years experience creating Strategic "smart" Design and a BFA in advertising and design from CCAD. In the years prior to SKUBA Trace worked to develop such brands as Boots, Rite Aid, Albertsons and Duane Reade. Advertising Campaigns for Merck. Packaging and Product design sold in Target, Moma, Borders and other retail stores across the globe. Since starting Skuba we have worked on thousands of projects across the gamut to and from... web + mobile apps + video / motion + product design + packaging design + ad campaigns + marketing. And have worked on local and international clients both big and small.
Fun Fact: She first came to New Orleans to rebrand K&B drugstore chain. Yes, rebranding the K&B purple! Rite Aid purchased K&B prior to the new brand launch, but New Orleans was in her blood and she made it back to call it home.
Laurie DicksonAccount Services Director Laurie received her BFA in Graphic Design from Savannah College of Art and Design. After graduation she returned to her hometown of New Orleans and began a fifteen year career in advertising and marketing. Laurie most recently held a position of Partner and Managing Director of a satellite location of a digital advertising agency, based in Savannah Georgia, There, she was responsible for new business development, account management and strategy. Before that post, she was a Group Creative Director at one of the largest independent, full-service agencies in the South. With her broad experience in both the creative field and the account service realm, she was able to develop a proven track record of creating successful strategic advertising for a number of different industries such as hospitality and hotel, tourism and travel, restaurant, food and beverage, sports marketing, tech, healthcare and more. Laurie’s work has been published in Print Magazine, and has been the recipient of many awards including the prestigious Gold Effie, several local, regional and national Addys, The Lee Denim Days Media Splash Award, and the HSMAI Platinum Adrian Award. Fun Fact: Laurie would rather swallow a battery than spend 10 minutes in Bed Bath & Beyond.
Jonathan MakiAccount Executive Jonathan, a native New Orleanian, comes to Skuba after years of experience working in the digital marketing and live events industries around the New Orleans area. He acts as Account Executive to assist the agency in client relations, business development, and project management. He completed his MBA in 2009 with a unique focus on Digital Media Management from St. Edward’s University in Austin, TX. His studies and work have emphasized interactive technology marketing, e-commerce development, digital project management, global digital media, and digital law and policy. He also holds a BA in Marketing from the University of Mississippi. Jonathan has worked closely with a number of local and national marketing organizations including Valence LLC, Super! Alright! Media, Trumpet Group, Rehage Entertainment, and Clear Channel Radio.
Fun Fact: When not being a digital media nerd, Jonathan's usually out in Nola listening to live music, watching Walking Dead, or working on his old 1972 BMW motorcycle.
Jay CasteelLead Developer A quiet force behind SKUBA's superior development team. Jay has a youthful jolly spirit that, if you didn't know any better you may mistake him for a regular guy. Don't be fooled! He has what developer superstars are made of (the kind you see in the movie the Social Network - note these developers are one in a million). Jay attended college in the Netherlands for business and transferred to the Art Institute of Atlanta for a design degree. He worked as a designer and developer for a number of years before getting his BS in Web Design and Development from Full Sail University (the best program in the U.S.).
Fun Fact: While Jay is originally a southerner he spent his teenage years growing up in the Netherlands. In his spare time he's an internet surf'n, sometimes game'n, hacky sack'n & disc golf'n... barely skate'n foo. When recently measuring the heights of the guys in the office, Jay was stunned to find out he was 3" shorter than he told everyone... think big, feel tall.
Dan LeiningerInteractive Director The lead for all interactive... animation, motion effects, kiosks, Flash and more. Dan is a master in research, analysis, design and development for interactive projects, helping clients to discover and define unique goals for user interaction, and translating ideas into functional web-based applications and platforms. He is a lightning fast coder AND not only is he one of the smartest guys you might ever meet he also happens to be one of the nicest.
Fun Fact: When he's not developing, playing disc golf or kickball he can be found practicing or playing music with his band.
Jeff MillsWeb Developer Jeff has been a professional web developer for the last nine years. Before making the move in April 2013 to his favorite city (New Orleans), he used his talents and attention to detail to develop large-scale applications and tools for higher education. He is fluent in all things server-side focusing mostly on PHP/MySQL development. Jeff is constantly in searching for smarter, more effective development techniques, and is in the process of obtaining his degree in the web design/development field.
Fun Fact: Jeff is a fan of almost all things caffeine, bicycling through the city on nice days, rockin' out on his prized Spector 4-string bass, and playing way too much Fallout3 and Skyrim.
Ashley FiorelloGraphic Designer Born and raised in New Orleans, Ashley attended Loyola University where she received a BA in graphic design. Her passion for intuitive and simple user experiences makes her a perfect addition to the web industry. After taking her first web class Ashley was asked to student teach the following semester, which led to an internship for a web design firm. This series of events acted as her launch pad into all things web. After studying abroad in Costa Rica and working in San Antonio at a top web firm, Ashley has happily returned to New Orleans to join forces with the rest of the Skuba team. Fun Fact: Ashley was a part of a culinary team that won a Louisiana state championship when she was young and now uses those skills cooking new dishes when she isn't designing.
Rodwell StephensDeveloper/Designer Originally from San Andrés Island, Colombia; Rodwell has called New Orleans home for 20 years. Rodwell is an experienced web developer and designer with a BFA from Louisiana State University and an Associates in web design and interactive media from the Art Institute of Atlanta. He is a detail-oriented designer ever careful to make sure everything is just right. His modern clean esthetic lends itself well to the skuba esthetic... keep it clean, keep it simple.
Fun Fact: Outside of eating or dreaming of eating he spends his leisure time listening to music, watching Arsenal football matches and trying to catch up on the Game of Thrones.
Gil BirmanWeb Developer Gil graduated from Johns Hopkins with a BS in Computer Science over 10 years ago but he’s been developing since a young teen. Gil’s diverse interests combined with incredible intellect have made him an expert in not just development but video, lighting & cmx programming. Gil has worked on many projects throughout the years ranging from developing & maintaining a restaurant chain, developing and maintaining a chain of specialty stores where he also created a unified inventory system, designing a custom online marketplace, Implementing a Practice Management System with patient database, and launching applications. You can view his most recently developed app here, theviplist.at which allows bars & nightclubs to manage a social-networking based guest-list that converts customers to promotors. Areas of expertise include: CSS, PHP, Zend, MVC, jQuery, AngularJS, Bootstrap, Zurb, WAMPP, SQL, Facebook SDK, CVS, Symphony, Linux, Apache, Mod_perl to name a few.
Paulina GanucheauCoordinator/Illustrator Although Paulina has lived in many cities around the U.S. she is originally from New Orleans. With a BFA from SCAD she has many talents that we draw upon daily. She can leap from project to project in a single bound. Project manager > to illustrator. Prezi Master > to Designer... all with the agility and grace of Cat Woman (her alter ego).
Fun Facts: Paulina is secretly (or not so secretly) a comic book nerd and is currently developing an interactive comic book series that will be available for the iPad.