A one-on-one with Denver Tracy: Creative Director, Non-Profit Founder, and Actor.
PIA’s Jenna Bilyeu interviews Denver Tracy
Denver Tracy is a talented creative director, but he does so much more. Every conversation with him reveals another fascinating aspect of his life and personality. I recently interviewed Denver to find out more about his work and other creative and personal endeavors.
Tell me about a favorite project of yours, lately or of all time.
This is an exciting question and thank you for asking. Recently, I helped redesign the DFW Airport “Way Finding” signage. This included new directional print and digital signage that helps customers navigate the airport in a more seamless way. I was incredibly grateful for the opportunity. We completed the project with a 100% success rate. Flying just got easier!
I’d love to know more about your non-profit, Brainxcite.
In 2001, my younger brother, Boston, was involved in a tragic accident while crossing the street on foot. He was hit by a driver three times over the legal alcohol limit. Boston was pronounced dead on arrival. Through a miracle, he was resuscitated but withstood a traumatic brain injury (TBI).
During the rehabilitation process, we quickly realized the challenges of navigating through insurance claims and the recovery needs of an individual with a TBI. This led to pulling all the resources that led to Boston’s success together to create a centralized roadmap of rehabilitative services to help those impacted by a TBI. This helped us launch our nonprofit, Brainxcite. Today we have 20+ TBI Champions (that’s what we call them) and their caregivers enrolled in various programs of Brainxcite. Brainxcite exists to educate and support caregivers on their long-term roles.
Fast-forward to today, regarding Boston’s status: he has made a 90% recovery. You wouldn’t notice his disability at a glance. Boston recently graduated with a degree in mechanical drafting, and he is working on local projects in the Oklahoma City area. Boston is an advocate and ambassador for Brainxcite.
We realize that the role of a caregiver (in this case our family) is vital to a person’s recovery. TBI is a lifelong disability, and it impacts a person’s life in various ways as they age. Boston will continue to need assistance or care, even with his level of recovery, because the effects of age on the body and mind are more noticeable and impactful with a TBI. Underlying conditions can resurface and be exaggerated, and the injury itself can cause additional damage as the person ages.
I hear that you’ve recently started a modeling and acting career.
(Laughing) It is only four weeks old! It is a hobby and fun to do but was not even planned. I was out golfing with my parents. We had been taking pictures on the course when I happened to see a social media ad looking for a person in my age range who golfs. I asked my mom to make a quick Instagram video/story of me driving the ball from the tee, and I submitted that story and one of the selfie pics I had taken. Just a few days later, I was notified that I had been selected for the commercial!
One week later, I was on location with three experienced actors. We spent a full day on the golf course, shooting video in different settings, and I was invited back (solo) the next day to get some additional shots.
Based on that commercial, I was invited to shoot a second commercial. Then last week, I was cast in an Amazon Prime TV series. This is all just three weeks after I first responded to that ad for a golfer!
On my second commercial job, I had the opportunity to meet new friends who have been working in the business for years. They shared career advice, and I ended up getting an agent’s info. After a couple of agent interviews, this week I signed with Reel Talent Studio in OKC.
When I first met you, you gave us a tour of your office space. What was it like to practically have a whole WeWork building to yourself during COVID?
I rented an office but had access to the entire three-story, (let me look this up) 107,715 square-foot building, including offices, conference rooms, an atrium with stadium seating, a library, and ping pong tables. It was well-decorated and fully furnished, with an open seating plan that included access to any of the offices and conference rooms.
The snack bar had a full kitchen, coffee, kombucha, and teas on tap, and a refrigerator where you could store food you brought to work. There were booths and counter seating for work breaks. They had a self-serve grab-and-go food station, but it was not active during COVID.
I had 24-hour access to this space, and during COVID, there were at most 3 occupants at any time, including myself. Fortunately, WeWork seems to have survived it since they just went public.
Tell me about the expertise you bring to PIA projects.
The title of “Creative Director” encompasses a set of roles from art director to designer to customer experience advisor. I bring to my PIA role a customer-centric approach, which means I am looking through the lens of the customer on every project.
Transportation is my passion due to centering on community engagement. I feel that transportation infrastructure is all about serving the community at a personal level, and that is fulfilling because my spiritual gift is that of service.
At PIA, I get to combine my creative side and my transportation background. I have recently been focused on the PIA website redesign, which like all websites is an ongoing process.
Are there any websites or links you'd like us to include in the article?
My Youtube channel, www.Denvertracy.live, showcases my commercial work but also includes personal projects, like podcast videos about serving the homeless community.
"Denver Tracy is the creative director for PIA Communications, and we are proud to have him on our team!"
- Jenna Bilyeu