Q&A with Cedric Crear, president of Crear Creative Group

Cedric Crear was working as chief marketing officer for a financial services company about eight years ago when he came to a life-changing conclusion.

“I said to myself, ‘I think I can do my own thing,’” Crear recalled.

That own thing was starting an advertising agency called Crear Creative Group, which he launched out of his house in 2006. He took out a loan, expanded his small firm to eight people and then merged with Magnum Integrated Marketing in November 2012.

Crear, still president of Crear Creative Group, said his ad agency is one-stop shopping for media buys, Web design, direct mailings, video/radio spots and social media.

The former Station Casinos marketing executive said the merged firm has nearly 60 gaming accounts. His firm’s early clients included Black & LoBello law firm, The Plaza, Urban League of Las Vegas and Southern Nevada Water Authority.

Crear, 44, is also a member of the Nevada Board of Regents and was recently named to a University of Nevada, Las Vegas 11-member board that will study the scope, cost and funding options for a proposed football stadium/entertainment center on the UNLV campus.

Crear also has deep roots in Las Vegas. He’s a native and a 1987 Gorman High School graduate who received a tennis scholarship to Howard University. He’s a married father of two daughters, 14 and 9. Crear’s father was also the second black doctor registered in Nevada.

Local ad agency competition is fierce — how do you set your firm apart?

Crear Creative Group is a Certified MBE, full-service agency with in-house account services, creative, media, production, Web and social media teams. Our bandwidth and hands-on experiences to assist companies to reach their goals is invaluable. As a former executive with Station Casinos, all of my partners are former C-Suite executives from major gaming and hospitality companies like myself.

What was the biggest thing you learned from the casino industry that you apply to your own firm?

It is imperative to hire great people that are the best in their fields. I currently work and have worked with some of the smartest and most talented people who will do what it takes to get the job done. We live and work in a fast-paced, short-turnaround environment that requires final products to be exemplary. The client demands it and we deliver it.

What drove you to seek election as a Regent?

I love serving on the Board of Regents. I believe it to be the most admirable position in public service. To be engaged in and establish policy for the Nevada System of Higher Education, that touches every aspect of our state, and working with students is humbling. I have started many initiatives that are changing the way we view higher education and I want to continue to ensure they are properly executed.

What has irked you the most about how the city has evolved?

I love Las Vegas and our community. I am very proud to be a native. We have so much to be proud of, and it is only getting better. I do not believe we have put a strong enough emphasis on working with Nevada companies that help keep Nevadans employed. I also believe, with our tremendous historical growth, the state has not properly funded education, which hurts us on so many levels.

Why is UNLV, not the resort industry, building the proposed stadium/entertainment center on campus?

I believe UNLV is the perfect location for a neutral site stadium. Not only does the university benefit but the entire community does as well, including the entertainment industry. We cannot build the stadium without the support of the industry and the community. The resort industry will be playing a major role.

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