MEET OUR TEAM
Since co-founding Thoma, Martin has leveraged roots in journalism and writing to conceive, develop, and implement a diverse array of projects, ranging from new product initiatives for global technology companies to public information and safety campaigns for state agencies. Martin is the author of Branding Like the Big Boys and a recognized author of articles and white papers on branding, marketing strategy, and communications. Martin loves anything in the water – from swimming to fishing to paddle boarding and snorkeling. He’s an avid gardener, former beekeeper, private pilot, and Spanish speaker (un poquito)!
As a principal and co-founder of Thoma, Melissa has provided strategy and market research leadership on projects for over 25 years – drawing on her long history and experience with both for-profit and nonprofit clients. A brilliant and rapid-fire conceptualizer, Melissa delivers innovative ideas that elevate brand communications for clients in diverse categories including tourism, healthcare, higher education, energy, nonprofit, and financial services. Melissa is a staunch supporter of the arts, with a background in opera and musical theatre. She enjoys running marathons, vegan cookery, and lives for a good book.
Principal & Executive Creative Director
For 30+ years, Shawn has been working in the marketing trenches to help clients reach their business goals, grow market share, and build brands that stand out. As founder and owner of EXIT Marketing for 14 years, Shawn developed a uniquely effective social marketing practice in which he and his team helped clients in a wide range of categories develop lead-generating social media programs. He now serves as a Principal and Executive Creative Director at Thoma. Shawn loves music, sports and family time at the lake. He’s not a fan of public speaking, mattress stores or turtlenecks. He and Kristi, his wife of 28 years, have 4 children.
Rachel is deeply involved in creating design strategy, developing brand identity work, and executing campaign tactics for both traditional and digital channels. She has also leveraged her website design capabilities to do amazing work for Thoma – even winning Thoma the Arkansas Money & Politics Best Web Design Firm of 2020 award. Along with her creative talents, Rachel also stays on top of the latest industry trends and tools. Rachel is a proud daughter, sister, and aunt. In her free time, she enjoys party planning, living vicariously through adventure novels, and chilling lakeside.
When something needs to get fixed, shipped, billed, purchased, scheduled, or pretty much any other essential office function, Diane Baxter gets it accomplished. She has spent the better part of the decade keeping the Thoma train on the rails as an invaluable asset to our team and our clients. Prior to her time at Thoma, Diane spent several years working as an administrative assistant at Dillard’s corporate office. She is a mother to two wonderful sons and has two amazing grandkids – more commonly known as her “grandangels.”
Beverly is primarily responsible for managing the agency finances, but she does so much more than that. She allows us to express our right brain creativity while she makes prudent fiscal decisions that ensure the electricity stays on – working harder than us all to ensure that Thoma continues to thrive. Beverly previously worked in international tax and accounting at Alltel Information Services and served the community as a past chair of American Cancer Society Ball. When not at the office, Beverly likes to knit and has recently taken up gardening – although her thumb isn’t all the way green yet.
With more than two decades’ experience in integrated marketing, branding, advertising, and project management at some of Arkansas’ largest corporations — including Dillard’s Department Stores, Walmart, and Alltel – Adam has honed his ability to listen intently and respond creatively. His focus at Thoma is keeping projects and programs on track by understanding and integrating our clients’ objectives while providing guidance and strategy. Adam is a self-proclaimed baseball fanatic, coffee snob, award-winning chili cook, and a married father of three.
Leslie brings along decades of administration, education, and nonprofit leadership experience to our team. She began her career in arts administration as the public relations and marketing coordinator for Arkansas Repertory Theatre, the state’s largest nonprofit regional theater. Leslie also served as executive director of Wildwood Park for the Arts for 10 years where she was curator for operations, programming, fundraising and strategic planning. Leslie is a certified beach bum, butterfly gardens lover, and the proud mom of two sons who thankfully share her love of chocolate ice cream.
Jr. Art Director
Mandy is an extremely talented graphic designer with a passion for telling stories through her work. Mandy graduated from Henderson State University in 2020 with a Bachelor’s degree in Graphic Design, and has since broadened her skill set and produced stunning work for Thoma under the mentorship of Rachel Byrd. Mandy is also a professional photographer, whose work has been featured in the Daytona Museum of Photography in Florida. She is a musician, world traveler, a lover of miniatures, all things comedy, and her 2 cats Ron Swanson and Kuzco.
Digital Media Manager
Anna is in charge of managing all social and digital media projects at Thoma. With a Bachelor’s degree in Mathematics, Anna is uniquely able to apply analytical problem solving to every project she works on. Her contributions to the team range from social media ad management to marketing automation, as well as digital animation. Anna is eager to expand Thoma’s social media client base to help build brands that strengthen our community. She enjoys spending quality time with family, visiting art museums, and has a fiesty, cuddly, goofy dachshund named Stella who loves nothing more than spending her days patrolling our office.
Public Relations Intern
Lola works with PR Account Executive Jennifer Joyner to develop media strategies and PR deliverables for a variety of clients. She also supports our social media team to develop content, write copy, and pull analytics to advance engagement with our social media clients. She is currently studying public relations at the University of Central Arkansas, where she serves as the PR Director of the UCA Chapter of Public Relations Society of America. Lola loves spending her free time traveling and can usually be found hanging around the office with her energetic dog Opie.
Digital + Social Strategist
Armed with an MBA in Marketing from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock and extensive certifications in Facebook Blueprint, Google Analytics, and Sprout Social, Elizabeth has built a reputation as the region’s leading social media strategist. She grew the national reputation of her family’s Delta artisanal home-goods business, built an eight-person social media department from the ground up, and built one of Little Rock’s most innovative new watering holes — Bark Bar. Elizabeth loves to travel, and she is an avid deer hunter (what Delta Arkansan isn’t?).