Proud burnouts
and dropouts

To be honest, our leadership team is made up of burnouts and dropouts. We have all been a part of the large agency scene and decided we don't want to just be coaches, but players too. That is why we have all come together at Propane to create new type of agency that allows each of us to roll up our sleeves and work hand-in-hand with our clients and touch every project. Being hands on is important to each of us and that is why our team reflects not only some of the greatest minds in our space, but those who can actually do the work as well. After all, those who can't do, teach - and you can't teach transformation.

Nick McLain

Head of Strategy
A veteran of digital marketing and advertising, Nick incorporates creative and analytical problem solving into Propane’s key client initiatives. His adaptive thinking and ability to understand diverse client verticals makes him an ideal lead for Propane’s strategy group.

Over the past 15 years, Nick has worked with clients such as Microsoft, TOMS Shoes, Oracle, AIG, Nortel, Kyocera Wireless, Intuit, and The Fresh Market.

Nick is an avid musician, snowboarder and backpacker. He also plays and builds African Harps, because you never know when that might come in handy.

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http://propanestudio.com/leadership/detail/nick-mclain

Joe Meanor

Head of Client Services
Joe serves as head of Client Services at Propane Studio. He brings deep experience working as a team lead and team builder with creative companies and clients, focused on strategy, design, and delivery of business-building products, experiences, and communications.

With a background that spans a variety of business categories, including financial services, retail, wireless, consumer electronics, healthcare, travel and CPG, Joe’s well-versed and experienced in working to better define business opportunities and leading client engagements with a focus on solving complex business problems.

On the home front, with two young kids under the age of 7, Joe has mastered his Ninja Turtle moves and perfected his Disney princess tea party table manners.

An East Coast native who only arrived in the Bay Area recently, Joe is looking forward to exploring California and spending a lot of time outdoors with his family.

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http://propanestudio.com/leadership/detail/joe-meanor

Neil Chaudhari

PARTNER/CHIEF EXPERIENCE OFFICER
Entrepreneur and innovator, Neil Chaudhari has guided the direction and development of Propane Studio since its inception. During the past decade of growth and transformation, he and his expanding team have helped define what it means to be agile. In the process, the agency has become a trusted partner to leading and emerging brands in the automotive, fashion, financial services, hospitality, healthcare, and technology industries. Neil inspires the creation of radically compelling digital experiences that leave a lasting impression.

Drawing from his real-world background on behalf of globally recognized clients—Audi, Hitachi, Intel, Intuit, Kaiser Permanente, Macy’s, Whole Foods, and others—Neil maintains a deeply strategic vision for his clients’ brands that extends well beyond the digital space. His focus area of expertise is in human behavior and resulting user experience, content strategy, and platform architecture. As a result, Propane Studio has earned a reputation for solving the really difficult communications challenges that modern businesses face.  (He wouldn’t have it any other way).

When he’s not working, Neil loves traveling the world with his three girls: wife and Propane partner Lilu, daughter Sana and pug Tara.

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http://propanestudio.com/leadership/detail/Neil-Chaudhari

Tom Despain

COO
As a proven business innovator and builder of successful infrastructures, Tom DeSpain brings more than three decades of financial and operations expertise to his role at Propane Studio. He is responsible for the overall financial management of the agency, including fiscal reporting and long-range business planning. He also provides the kind of modern, supportive leadership that instills loyalty and humanity in the people around him.

Prior to joining Propane in 2012, Tom amassed a depth of varied experience across retail, eCommerce, technology, and other vital industries. Most recently, he served as an independent management consultant to start-ups and emerging brands in the San Francisco Bay Area. His impressive professional background also includes senior financial and operations positions at Vinfolio, Gap, Sega, and Amoco.

Outside of the office, Tom enjoys travel and the company of family and close friends (preferably with good food and wine). His creative pursuits include everything from cooking and writing to gardening and painting.

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http://propanestudio.com/leadership/detail/tom-despain

Rebecca Kidder

VP, PROGRAM MANAGEMENT
Rebecca manages a talented team of project managers and is responsible for ensuring quality, timeliness, and budget for all Propane Studio deliverables. She contributes expertise in scheduling and cost efficiencies, technical strategy, process design, resource allocation, cross-functional team facilitation, client management, and documentation.

She has almost twenty years of experience as a manager of websites, applications and interactive advertising. Prior to Propane, Rebecca has served as Executive Producer at the award-winning B2B advertising agency Doremus, as Senior Interactive Producer at McCann Worldgroup, and as primary project manager and client liaison for several web design firms. She has led design, development and deployment teams for high-level projects for Hewlett-Packard, Microsoft, Logitech, Corning, Visa, and Intel.

Rebecca is a San Francisco native and still resides in the city. She is also a martial artist who teaches self-defense courses on weekends.

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http://propanestudio.com/leadership/detail/rebecca-kidder

Saad Khan

Business Development
Saad Khan is the voice of clients and partners; he heads Business Development and Sales at Propane Studio, ensuring continued growth, development and new market penetration. He credits his ability to relate to people, understand customer sales psychology and deliver value based solutions for all parties involved to his joint experiences in startup and corporate environments, as well as his multicultural upbringing.

Prior to joining Propane Studio, he was pursuing his MBA and was a Co-founder at Beard Nomads, the largest crypto-currency mining platform in the Middle East. He worked as a Senior Business Development Manager at Hilti, leading teams for major development projects in 12 countries. Saad began his career in the Energy and HVAC industry in business development, successfully delivering solutions for corporations such as Emirates Group, Starwood Hotels, Brookfield Multiplex, JCDecaux, Besix and multiple governments throughout the EMEA Region.

As an amateur chef and foodie, Saad spends his weekends going around the Bay Area hunting for the best hidden eateries or hosting dining events for his friends. He spends the rest of his time traveling to as many places as possible on mini holidays.

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http://propanestudio.com/leadership/detail/saad-khan

Lilu Odedra

Director of Digital Resources
Lilu Odedra is a dedicated brand builder, respected design leader, and inspired product innovator. In her senior role as Director of Digital Resources, she oversees Propane Studio’s comprehensive digital resourcing requirements, as well as supporting strategic partnerships and senior-level recruiting. She is also the driving force behind Propane Labs, the agency’s dedicated product-design group. The Propane co-founder served as lead art director for nearly a decade as the agency established its industry leading credentials.

Before joining her partners to launch Propane Studio, Lilu was Lead Designer at AllBusiness.com where she supervised site design and brand identity work for major partner companies, including American Express and First Union. She also previously led a successful freelance design career, servicing brands such as Bank of America, Dun & Bradstreet, and Sempra Energy. Lilu earned her BFA in New Media from the Academy of Art College and a bachelor’s degree in Art and Art History from the University of Central Florida.

When she’s not working, Lilu enjoys reading, cooking, and rediscovering the sights of her adopted hometown of San Francisco through the eyes of her young daughter.

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http://propanestudio.com/leadership/detail/lilu-odedra

Tara

director of snacks
Tara joined the company in 2005. Although fresh out of puppy school, she was able to add value almost instantaneously as a cultural leader. While greeting and welcoming all new clients and employees, she uplifts spirits around the office. She quickly graduated from welcomer to manager, and would seek out stressed employees and offer consulting and support in the form of lap rest and cuddles.

After 4 successful years, she was promoted to vp of mascot. During that time she organized partnerships with food, snacks and requested daily walks from employees, which had a positive impact in overall health of the team. In the beginning of 2015, she was promoted to Chief Ambassador, in which she over sees operations from her remote bungalow. She reminds the partners daily that life is precious, and that it is a privilege to be able to earn a living via digital communications.

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http://propanestudio.com/leadership/detail/tara

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