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Signal Theory

TOTAL NUMBER OF EMPLOYEES
Office Employees101-200
Total US101-200
Total Worldwide101-200
BIOS
Ali Mahaffy, Co-CEO
Ali’s client-side experience gives her a great perspective on the pressures and challenges our clients face and how the firm should be positioned to help. Ali plays a key role in forging our unique professional and personal client relationships. She ensures that the firm has the resources it needs to be a lean, mean and highly effective machine.

Ali came to Signal Theory from H&R Block, where she won the Gold CLIO as part of the team that launched Block’s new logo and identity standards system in 2000. Ali’s youthful enthusiasm belies her years of experience in both the agency and client worlds.
John January, Co-CEO
John helped Signal Theory establish its national reputation for creative excellence. A sought-after speaker and industry thought leader, John helps our clients see not just what’s coming down the road but also what’s around the next corner.

John’s creative work has been featured in The One Show, Communication Arts, Creativity, Archive, Print, U.S. Ad Review and the national ADDYs. John is a champion of diversity and inclusion, and is a founding board member of Kansas City’s Brand Lab which introduces students of every race and socioeconomic background to the potential of a career in marketing and advertising. He was also recognized as Kansas City’s Advertising Professional of the Year in 2010.
Tony Robinson, CFO
Signal Theory is known for our fun-loving culture and just-quirky-enough-to-work ideas. But all that fun isn’t possible without a strong leader crunching numbers behind the scenes. That’s where Tony comes in. He brings 20 years of financial acumen to Signal Theory and leads the agency’s financial operations, including accounting, forecasting and regulatory compliance. He’s also up there in pureness of heart, serving on the board of directors of the Tyler Robinson Foundation, which supports families experiencing pediatric cancer.
Jim Vranicar, COO
Jim spent a great deal of his youth laboring in the fields of northeast Nebraska. Those summers walking bean fields and detasseling corn helped shape Jim’s strong work ethic, one we benefit from every day at Signal Theory. After spending his first 10 years leading our media planning efforts, Jim was promoted in 2017 to Chief Operating Officer. As such, he directs all operational and HR initiatives across recruiting, employee experience, benefits and workflow processes to ensure that Signal Theory remains a great place to work.
Diane Young, Vice President, Account Management
Diane is a delightful, versatile and inventive marketing and communications expert with diverse industry experience, including restaurants, entertainment, news and book publishing, HDD and online commerce. We love her knack for building brands, profits, great teams and meaningful partnerships. She came to Signal Theory to lead the cross-functional team of 30+ who support the SONIC Drive-In account as the chief contact and company lead, with fiscal and organizational responsibilities associated with a first-class level of service. Today, she oversees our account management function firm-wide.
Jon Kowing, Vice President, Executive Creative Director
A much-awarded and recognized creative talent, Jon may have single-handedly art-directed more food-related shoots than any other human on earth. From shakes to steaks, double-stuffed pizzas, bacon double-cheeseburgers and fried fish of every golden brown nuance, Jon makes it all look delicious. His attention to detail has lent itself equally well to the complex world of animal wellness. Clients quickly come to love Jon, not just for his talent but his amazingly steady presence and killer wit. His work has been featured in Communication Arts, Print and U.S. Ad Review. His brand resume includes SONIC Drive-In, Pizza Hut, Captain D’s Seafood, Cargill, Borden Cheese, Seaboard Foods, CareFusion, Coleman, Kansas Lottery and Bayer Animal Health.