Jill Adams, Principal/CEO
Jill is the CEO, co-founder and majority owner of Adams & Knight. She oversees the agency’s strategic marketing services, helping to translate client objectives into results-driven advertising, public relations and digital marketing.
After graduating from college in D.C., Jill stayed in the Capitol to work as an aide to a U.S. Congressman. Yearning for an overseas adventure, she later moved to Madrid to teach English and travel. Back in the states, she completed a grad degree in communications at Boston University and put it to work at several agencies in Boston and Hartford. Prior to starting her own firm, she also gained valuable client-side experience at Connecticut Mutual and as a VP of Communications for Monarch Financial Services.
See an example of her expertise with this strategic initiative for Webster Bank.
Of which business achievements are you most proud?
My biggest sense of accomplishment comes from building such a great team. Not just because they’re such talented professionals, but because they’re also such good people who truly care about each other and about our clients.
What awards/recognition do you value most?
I’m most proud of the fact that we’ve been named an American Marketing Association Marketer of the Year for five out of the last six years . . . because that recognizes the combination of sound strategies, creative executions and measurable results.
What do you find most fulfilling about your work?
I love learning. Always have. That’s what I love most about this business. You’re always learning about a new client, a new industry, a new product or service, a new target audience, yet finding new ways to apply proven lessons as well.
What traits help you succeed?
Pure stubbornness. I inherited that trait from my father, but it was shaped into more gracious stick-to-itiveness by my mother. And it’s been honed by more than 20 years of tackling the challenges—and seizing the opportunities—that come from owning your own business.
How have your roots contributed to who you are today?
I grew up in the “show me” state . . . in Kansas City, Missouri. My no-nonsense Midwestern roots have definitely shaped my willingness to work hard for my goals and my unwillingness to suffer “big talkers.” I admire people who “think big” rather than “talk big.”
Of which achievements are you most proud?
Of course, sustaining a business through two decades is an achievement. But I feel truly blessed to have sustained a wonderful marriage for even longer!
Any special interests?
I have a particular passion for the theater. There’s no other art form that is so ephemeral yet so lasting. The magic moments are created each time the lights go down in the theater and a new world comes up on the stage. The performance may be over in a few hours, but its impact can shape your worldview for years to come.
What would people find most surprising about you?
I was a pre-med major up until my senior year. I still am fascinated by all fields of science.
I’m a sap. I cry in movies, over books, when my dog is sick, listening to StoryCorps on NPR.
My guilty pleasure is reading Entertainment Weekly, while the Smithsonian and National Geo magazines pile up.