About us.

Small by design, global by experience.

Story Stick is a seasoned team of thinkers and doers whose resumes include global agencies, award-winning work, and clients from Fortune 100 companies to start-ups. We started the agency in 2009 to do what we love with people we love working with, and to be nimble, responsive, and human in everything we do.

To the ends of the earth and back.

We work with clients all around the world. Whether we’re shooting a video in Abu Dhabi, producing an event in Kuala Lumpur, or creating ads for a conference in Barcelona, we bring deep cultural fluency to our work.

Start right.

We start every project by listening and learning, digging deep, and asking a lot of questions. The more we know, the better the solution.

Community matters.

We’re deeply committed to supporting our community. As an agency, we donate our time, talent, and expertise to help two local nonprofit organizations do more of what they do best—improving the health and quality of life for people in need. In addition to producing their annual galas, we spend time each month volunteering at the grassroots level.

The story behind our name.

The story stick has been used as a tool in many cultures to make decisions, resolve conflicts, teach children, and share stories. It creates a space where everyone can contribute, and every voice is heard. The ethos of this tradition permeates our culture—how we develop ideas, solve problems, and collaborate with our clients.

meet the team.

Martha Pettee

Managing Partner, Creative Director

As the leader for all things strategic and creative, Martha is a lightning-fast thinker who has the energy and single-mindedness to create something from nothing. She loves working with clients and teams and has the courage to start with the blank piece of paper and bring new thinking to a challenge.

“What you can do or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius and magic in it. Begin it now.”

Goethe

Michael Pettee

Managing Partner, Producer

As executive producer and director of operations, Michael has literally moved mountains in event production – he once created an earthen stage at the base of Keystone mountain for the Subaru Outback launch. That vision, tenacity and attention to detail are applied to video, digital, and events big and small.

“There is nothing in a caterpillar that tells you it’s going to be a butterfly.”

Buckminster Fuller

Christie Graham

Senior Communications Strategist

Before moving to the agency realm, Christie was our client in the corporate world. She has strategized, written, and managed work for widely diverse audiences and industries. Christie believes that communications is best played as a team sport with a give-and-take process, and that the key to success is considering everyone—colleagues and clients alike—her customer. And an inveterate DIYer, we’re pretty sure she must have plaster and sawdust in her DNA!

“Break stupid rules—and most of them are.”

K. D. Horton

Sara Schlueter

Project Coordinator

With a background in creating custom editorial magazines for a variety of clients, Sara loves crafting and listening to a good story. She loves to work together with both the clients and creative teams to be a positive voice and create something everyone is proud of. Sara has a flair for fashion, and besides holding a journalism degree from Iowa State University, also has a degree in apparel merchandising and design. When not at Story Stick Sara enjoys being active, reading, shopping, cooking and exploring the great state of Minnesota.

"The noblest art is that of making others happy."

P.T. Barnum

Michelle Metcalfe

Graphic designer

As a world traveler and dual citizen of the United Kingdom and the United States, Michelle has a passion for discovering new ways of thinking and problem solving. A millennial, Michelle is open to new possibilities and brings a fresh design esthetic to her work. Michelle believes great design and coffee are inseparable and she is never seen without a cup on her desk.

Design is where science and art break even.

Robin Mathew

Maggie Lee

Writer

Good writing anticipates a reader’s questions and makes even challenging information easy to grasp. That’s been Maggie’s philosophy for over 15 years as she’s used her skills to help businesses craft unique stories designed to capture attention and market share.

“Sweet, crazy conversations full of half sentences, daydreams and misunderstandings more thrilling than understanding could ever be.”

Toni Morrison, Beloved

Bill Bliesath

Organizing Guy

Whenever Bill is in a situation that seems out of control, he’ll leap in to unravel the mess. He loves square pegs in square holes and to make sense of things, to create order out of chaos. He does data management, procedures and system development, coaching, project and production management. We wouldn’t be who we are without him.

"Organizing is what you do before you do something, so that when you do it, it is not all mixed up.”

A.A. Milne

Dennis Curley

Creative Partner

It’s a shorter list to describe what Dennis doesn’t do! He composes music, performs, produces, and writes all kinds of communications. Plus, he speaks perfect French. C’est vrai!

"You know he'd be a poorer man if he never saw an eagle fly!"

John Denver

Eric Mueller

Interactive Design Director, Illustrator

Eric specializes in interactive design solutions, user interface, and user experience. After starting his career in product design, he’s taken his user-centric product design approaches and applied them to the digital world. He has developed and managed websites and interactive pieces for both B2B and B2C audiences over the last 10 years.

“Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.”

Steve Jobs

Ann Rauvola

Senior Graphic Designer

Ann has designed hundreds of brochures, print, digital and video pieces for a variety of clients. She is adept at embracing a corporate design language and making it feel fresh. Ann has worked with Martha and Michael on projects since 1995.

“Be bold. Or italic. Never regular.”

Jeff Gallo

Videographer

A visual storyteller, Jeff shoots and edits video and stills. His unique vision comes from a long career as a creative in a variety of agency settings, from promotions to experiential marketing. Just like SUB POP, a record label he loves, Jeff "enjoys laughter, good times, and the company of friends."

“Difficult takes a day. Impossible takes a week.”

Jay Z

Jim Guenther

Set Designer

With an MFA in Stage Design, Jim has 25 years of experience designing all kinds of 3-dimensional spaces – sets for TV commercials and corporate theater, museums, exhibits (including “Innoventions” at EPCOT), restaurants, retail and corporate experience centers. Jim has designed for theaters around the US, including the national tours of Sesame Street Live, and the rock musical, Aida.

"To draw you must close your eyes and sing."

Pablo Picasso