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Critical Mass Chicago

Critical Mass ChicagoPhone (312) 705-4190
225 North Michigan AvenueURL
Suite 700Contact Diane Heun
Chicago, IL 60601E-mail
Holding Company
Critical Mass was founded when a design visionary and a successful entrepreneur came together with a focus on digital experiences in a rapidly evolving space. Over the next 24 years, we helped global brands reimagine digital and transform their businesses through strategic consulting, innovative creative ideas, and cutting-edge technology thinking.

Today, we are 950 employees across 11 global offices. Even though we’re much bigger than when we started out in Calgary, we remain true to our roots—we’re transparent, honest, passionate, and have a can-do attitude that our clients notice and appreciate. Our executive and global leadership team use an open and accessible management style to drive our success on all fronts: innovating our services, mentoring our talent, and ensuring we deliver industry-leading work. We believe this is core to our success as a digital leader.

We are now majority-owned (99%) by Omnicom Group Inc. (NYSE: OMC). Omnicom is one of the largest holding companies for global advertising, marketing, digital and communications services firms. Their global revenue is over $15 billion, and they have more than 5,000 clients in over 100 countries.

Learn more about Critical Mass here:


Asia (except China)
Central America
Central Region
Eastern Europe
Eastern Region
South America
South Pacific
Southern Region
Western Europe
Western Region
Discretionary Comments:
Critical Mass has global offices in Canada (Calgary and Toronto), London, Hong Kong, San Jose, Costa Rica and Sao Paulo, Brazil.
Critical Mass New York
200 Varick Street, Suite 610
New York, NY 10014
Phone: (917) 606-8000
Critical Mass Chicago
225 N Michigan Ave, Suite 700
Chicago, IL 60601
Phone: (312) 288-2500
Critical Mass Cupertino
75 E. Santa Clara, 7th Floor
San Jose, CA 95113
Phone: (408) 475-7631
Critical Mass LA
5353 Grosvenor Blvd.,
Los Angeles, CA 90066
Phone: (310) 305-5381
Critical Mass Nashville
209 10th Ave. S., Suite 507
Nashville, TN 37203
Phone: (615) 259-6049


Office Employees101-200
Total US201-500
Total Worldwide500+
Discretionary Comments:
We have 950 dedicated employees across 11 global offices. Our employees span Strategy, User Experience Design, Content, Technology, Data & Analytics, Marketing and Media and Client Service.
Chris Gokiert, CEO
Chris Gokiert is the CEO of Critical Mass, an award-winning digital marketing and experience design agency. Chris is the driving force behind the development of the agency’s capabilities and integrated client offerings, and leads the team to consistently innovate and advance Critical Mass’ strategic vision.

Since joining Critical Mass in 1998, he has been instrumental in the growth and success of the agency, expanding the team from just 35 people in one Calgary office to over 1,000 employees across 11 global offices. Chris leads key client relationships across continents, including the launch of major multidimensional initiatives for Nissan, INFINITI, adidas and AT&T.

Chris’ authenticity is what sets him apart, both with clients and in the industry. He wins new business and leads client accounts with honesty and realness – not salesmanship and fake swagger. Whether he’s in a pitch meeting, the boardroom, or spending a late night in the trenches, he is constantly encouraging his team to push the boundaries of innovation and achieve their full potential.

Prior to his role as CEO, Chris served as President of Critical Mass for over a decade. Under his strategic leadership and dedication to excellent client service, Critical Mass has been recognized as an A-List Agency, Best Engagement Agency, Top UX Design Agency, Best Agency to Work For, Employer of the Year, and Best Place to Work. Chris himself was voted Influencer of the Year at the prestigious Creativepool Annual. Industry comments and POVs from Chris have been published in The Washington Post, Adweek, Campaign, creativebrief and more.

When not traveling from office to office, Chris resides in Calgary with his three girls, wife and two dogs – enjoying all the Canadian Rockies have to offer. Fun fact about Chris, he holds a master’s degree in Classical Archaeology.
Andrea Lennon, President
Andrea has been leading Critical Mass clients in customer experience, digital transformation and innovating brand ecosystems for some of the world’s most recognizable brands. A 20 year industry veteran, her global leadership includes successful agency and client relationship expansions across North America, Singapore, Hong Kong, Tokyo, and London. She’s re-built high-performance teams from scratch, scaled capabilities to new markets and regions across automotive, healthcare, hospitality, consumer goods and financial services. She focuses on relationships, business development, and agency operations with an emphasis on developing the agency’s culture and talent.

Despite her tenure at an executive level, Andrea is an entrepreneurial spirit who pushes the boundaries and is equally comfortable in small start-ups and large matrix organizations. She took a break in her career to obtain her culinary degree and worked as a chef running a boutique catering business in New York City. Whether it’s a start-up or established organisation, she is still very driven by the hands-on experience of working with surrounding teams to deliver award-winning and effective work.

Andrea’s been named to the BIMA 100 most influential people in digital, Campaign Asia’s 40 Under 40 and Creativepool’s top 100 Influencers of the Year.
Grant Owens, Chief Strategy Officer
Grant Owens is the Chief Strategy Officer at Critical Mass. His role at the agency is to lead strategy teams across the globe to ensure the agency is relentlessly focused on designing meaningful experiences that improve customers’ lives. Grant has a track record of building strong teams that deliver best in class, strategically driven work. Prior to joining CM, Grant was with Razorfish for more than 10 years. Most recently as GVP Head of Planning, he was responsible for digital strategy for clients such as Spotify, Mercedes-Benz, Ford, Viacom, CBS Radio, BMW and CNN. Grant also spent four years working in planning at Euro RSCG 4D. Grant also serves as Adjunct Professor at New York University, where he has taught for more than two years. He graduated from Miami University (Ohio) with a B.A.
Val Carlson, Chief Creative Officer
Valerie Carlson is the Global Chief Creative Officer for Critical Mass.

Val is an avid storyteller with over 20 years of creative experience. She has worked across many disciplines ranging from design, product, AR/VR, film, brand strategy, marketing, retail innovation, gaming and applications for some of the world’s biggest brands like FOX Entertainment, JP Morgan Chase, Coke, Microsoft, AT&T, Honda, Kraft, Treasury Wine Estates, Lululemon, and many others.

Prior to joining CM, Val was the ECD for Wunderman Thompson California, where she focused on digital transformation and loyalty experiences. Prior to that, she was the Global VP Creative at Method Products (People Against Dirty), where she led global creative and innovation for Method and Ecover brands. Before that, she was the Executive Creative Director at EVB, where she lead work for the NBA, Facebook, Twitter and Mamba Candy. She was also the Executive Creative Director, Global Innovation Lead at SapientNitro, where she lead the AVATAR digital ecosystem for James Cameron’s Lightstorm. Earlier in her career, Val held several top creative positions at Razorfish.

Val taught college level graphic design at an engineering school for seven years before jumping into digital in 2000. It is her love for teaching that has helped her mentor and lead in an industry where it is hard for women to succeed. She is also an advocate for women’s diversity and junior talent programs, leading them at several agencies over the years.

She has a huge passion for ecosystem connections, interface layer personalization and the evolution of e-commerce. TWITCH, Minecraft and old school games fascinate her and she believes mixed reality, streaming and experiential models can unlock solutions to business problems in ways that traditional marketers haven’t tapped into yet.

She holds a Bachelor of Science from Bradley University.
Sara Anhorn, Chief Talent Officer
Sara has nearly 20 years of experience in digital marketing, project management and people development on both national and international scales. As the Chief Talent Officer, Sara oversees human resources, talent acquisition, learning and development and internal communications. She and her team are responsible for crafting, preserving, and enhancing the employee experience that upholds Critical Mass’ culture, values, and good intentions. She was named Digiday’s 2020 HR Leader of the Year in the Worklife Awards.

Sara has an employee-first mentality with the belief that inspired talent leads to successful work, satisfied clients and strong business results. With almost 20 years of experience at the agency in various capacities and geographies, Sara strives to bring people together and get the most out of her teams. Prior to this role, Sara served as EVP, Talent and before that as VP Project Management and VP, Global Business Operations where she established and maintained global operational standards for an array of CM clients, including Nissan, Infiniti, Citibank, and BMW. Her digital capabilities include large-scale e-Commerce projects, content management systems, integrated marketing campaigns, prototype and usability testing.

Sara recently relocated back to Canada and is enjoying rediscovering the Rockies with her family.
Lee Tamkee, Chief Financial Officer
With over 20 years of experience in entrepreneurial, start up, turnaround and corporate environments, Lee is well-equipped to lead Critical Mass’s pursuit of operational excellence. In addition to leading the Finance and Support Services group at Critical Mass, Lee collaborates with the Leadership team to ensure that employees have access to the best resources, the best facilities and an inspiring environment to work in. He champions Critical Mass’s cause for profitable growth and operational success—all while never failing to appreciate the importance of having fun. Prior to Critical Mass, Lee was an integral member of the executive teams at both Bell and Rogers Wireless in Western Canada, which included the launch of Bell Canada’s expansion into Western Canada. While he is not quick to tell you, Lee is an accomplished athlete, having represented Canada in many international competitions as a member of the National Field Hockey team. The inherent drive for success, commitment to excellence and passion for teamwork has followed Lee into his role with Critical Mass.
John McLaughlin, Chief Operating Officer
As Chief Operating Officer, John is charged with overseeing the efficiency of the Agency’s process and quality of its work product. Since joining Critical Mass in 1999, he has progressed through several roles in the organization. Through his experience leading individual projects, large-scale client teams and entire offices, John has developed a great understanding of the challenges facing complex organizations and enjoys identifying and capitalizing on opportunities for improvement. With a Master’s Degree in Integrated Marketing from Northwestern University, John believes in the power of data and analytics to drive business and organizational decisions. He also holds a degree in journalism with a concentration in advertising and business administration from Ohio University. His free time is occupied by baseball, cheesy science-fiction novels and chronicling the adventures of his two sons.
Dianne Wilkins, Chair
In her 23 years with Critical Mass, Di has held many influential positions—managing director, coach, entrepreneur, and leader for teams and clients. During her tenure, Critical Mass and its affiliate organizations have grown from 25 people in Canada to 950 employees working in numerous locations around the globe. The vision and values that define her leadership have likewise propelled Critical Mass to continued and consistent success. Today, Critical Mass is widely recognized for its breadth and depth of services, its vibrant agency culture, its purpose-driven mindset, and its unwavering commitment to client service.

Under Di’s leadership Critical Mass has been recognized across the industry as an A-List Agency, Best Engagement Agency, Top UX Design Agency, Best Agency to Work For, and Employer of the Year. Di herself was recently included among Campaign’s 40 Over 40 list and named Top Boss in the Digiday Worklife Awards. Industry comments and POVs from Di have been published in The New York Times, Forbes, Ad Age, Adweek, The Drum, and Campaign, and she's been interviewed on a number of podcasts, including Real Famous, A Call to Action, and Fearless Creative Leaders

Di is also currently Chair of the Board at Fast & Female, a charity whose mission is to empower girls by keeping them in sports. She is also a past board member at the House of Anansi Press and currently works with a number of startups as both a strategic advisor and investor. In addition, Di is the co-founder and Managing Partner of a private activist investor fund that has set out to prove that public companies with a female CEO are inherently more diverse and achieve stronger financial performance as a result.

Clients & Brands

Agency Clients And Brands
Client Name: Citi
Start Date: 5/1/2005
Brand(s)/Services Provided:
Citibank, Citicards, Citi MortgageCreative Production-Project
Client Name: Nissan / Infiniti
Start Date: 5/1/2009
Client Name: AT&T
Start Date: 1/1/2010
Client Name: Apple
Start Date: 1/1/2015
Client Name: BMW
Start Date: 1/1/2016
Client Name: Bayer AG
Start Date: 1/1/2017
Client Name: McDonald''s
Start Date: 1/1/2016
Client Name: Norwegian Cruise Line
Start Date: 1/1/2017
Client Name: SAP
Start Date: 1/1/2014

Billings & Revenue

Number of Clients
Billing less than $1 Million
and/or Agency Revenue less than $200 Thousand
Billing between $1.1 - $3 Million
and/or Agency Revenue between $201 - $600 Thousand
Billing between $3.1 - $5 Million
and/or Agency Revenue between $601 Thousand- $1 Million
Billing between $5.1 - $10 Million
and/or Agency Revenue between $1.1 Million- $2 Million
Billing between $10.1 - $25 Million
and/or Agency Revenue between $2.1 Million - $5 Million
Billing between $25.1 - $50 Million
and/or Agency Revenue between $5.1 Million - $10 Million
Allocation percent of media placed by this office
Digital (Internet, Mobile, SEM, Viral)100%

Specialized Services

25%DesignExperience design for global brands is at the heart of what we do. We've built a strong reputation for handling large, complex, global clients and their digital ecosystem needs. We bring a proven track record of world-class strategy and experience design and back it up with operational excellence. We bring strong design practice including UX Architects, Art Directors, Designers, Motion Designers and more.

10%Digital/Interactive | Blogging Discussion forums, community buildingWe bring a full-suite of capabilities including social strategy, influencer engagement, community management, media, insights and analytics, creative and technology.

10%Digital/Interactive | E-Commerce SolutionsWe bring a deep set of credentials and strong track record in commerce and transactional experience design and development. Over 80% of our client engagements include a transactional component, whether it's activation, booking, shopping cart, check-out, self-service or online support. We've worked with some of the world's most demanding brands such as Dell, adidas, AT&T, Luxottica, Gucci, Citi and more.

10%Digital/Interactive | Mobile and WirelessWe have 12-years experience designing for the mobile screen where we have designed for both the mobile web and native applications, as well as full responsive design systems that include eCommerce. We're actively engaged on mobile strategy and/or implementation work for about 80% of our clients including Luxottica, Citi, AT&T and more.

5%Digital/Interactive | Search Engine MarketingEnter optional description

20%Digital/Interactive | Website development, hosting, monitoringWe have a 15-year track record in web design. Our engagements range from user experience led redesigns to complete platform overhauls. This area is core to what Critical Mass has to offer.

10%Marketing Data AnalyticsEnter optional description

5%Media BuyingEnter optional description

5%Media PlanningEnter optional description

Industry Experience

Apparel & Fashion | apparel
Apparel & Fashion | footwear
Apparel & Fashion | jewelry & accessories
Automotive | aftermarket
Automotive | vehicles
Business Services & office products
Consumer Services
Cosmetics, perfumes & toiletries
Entertainment & Culture | amusement parks
Financial services | banking
Financial services | credit cards
Financial services | insurance
Financial services | investments
Food & Beverage | alcoholic beverages
Food & Beverage | food
Food & Beverage | pet food
Food & Beverage | soft drinks
Gambling | lotteries
Healthcare | direct to consumer (DTC)
Healthcare | hospitals, healthcare facilities, medical services
Healthcare | managed care
Home Products | home furnishings
Home Products | home improvements (Hardware, paint, plumbing, gardening)
Home Products | housewares
Household Supplies
Industrial, Manufacturing & chemicals
Luxury & Imported products
Non-profit, associations & public services
Recreation & Sports | hobbies
Recreation & Sports | sporting goods
Recreation & Sports | toys & games
Technology | .com business
Technology | communications
Technology | computer hardware & software
Technology | consumer electronics
Technology | electronics
Travel | airlines
Travel | hotels & resorts
Travel | tourism