If you haven’t heard, Daktronics has hired Diane Gonzalez-Ferranti to a leadership position within the Creative Services team. To get to know her and her new role on our team, we thought we’d hop on a call with Diane for a quick chat. Here’s what we learned…
Question: Hi Diane and welcome to the Daktronics team!
Diane: Thank you! So happy to be here!
(Okay, so that wasn’t a question. It gets better from here, I promise.)
Q: To start our chat today, we’d like to get a bit of your background. Can you tell us how many years of experience you have in the live events industry?
Diane: A LOT! I like to tell people I was 12 when I started, but I actually began working as an intern with the Detroit Pistons in 1988 when I was still in college. The Pistons had just moved into their new home the Palace of Auburn Hills with an extremely small staff. The Pistons won their first NBA Championship that year and I was hired shortly after.
Q: How do you expect to apply that background and those years of experience in your new role?
Diane: I feel like I’ve been a part of so many aspects of this industry, from winning championships to putting on concerts and events and so much more. I’ve been fortunate through it all to have built so many relationships over the years and many, many friendships, I feel those relationships and friendships are my greatest support. Leaning on those experiences and expanding on them I really believe will help me in my new role with Daktronics Creative Services.
Q: What are you most excited to start doing at Daktronics?
Diane: I’m most excited for the Out of Home market and seeing what we can do in that aspect of the business. I’m very confident in what we can do in the sports market, but I feel like the shopping malls and other gathering places offer the ability for me to expand my creativity. Those areas are very interesting to me and I’m looking forward to those opportunities.
Q: What do you think Daktronics Creative Services can bring to those markets?
Diane: You know, Daktronics has some of the most creative artists that I have ever seen. The animations and reels they produce – AMAZING! I think their work can help create experiences with Daktronics installations and creative applications. The opportunity lies in tying everything together, the sound, the lights, the special effects all need to work together to create that immersive experience.
Q: How do you view digital signage in the world today?
Diane: I think it has evolved so much in terms of the experience. There is more of an emphasis on creating something that viewers will remember and an engaging experience. There is certainly still a place for sharing a message to large audiences and creating awareness, but that is expanding in multiple use cases. For example, when I was part of opening Little Caesars Arena in Detroit, there was an emphasis on creating visuals to capture your attention at every angle in the building. Yet making all of these assets work together as one. That’s really where the industry is heading and continues to go.
Q: Okay, enough of the tough questions, what is one of your favorite experiences from your previous roles?
Diane: It’s always memorable to win a championship and I’ve been part of multiple championships with the Detroit Pistons, Detroit Shock and Detroit Vipers. Proud of all of those winning teams, but almost more excited for the players on those teams that I’ve become close friends with. One in particular is Chauncey Billups. I’m super excited for him and his new role as head coach of the Portland Trail Blazers!
Q: Anything else stand out?
Diane: I would say this one is a bit of foreshadowing for my career, but I was inducted into the IDEA Hall of Fame in 2019 with none other than Al Kurtenbach, co-founder of Daktronics. A very cool experience and feels like this next step was just meant to be.
Q: Finally, if we saw you outside of work, where would it most likely be?
Diane: On the golf course. I love golf – playing it, watching it, talking about it, you name it!
Thanks, Diane, for the fun conversation and we’re excited to have you on our team here at Daktronics!