WE DON'T LET EACH OTHER OR OUR CLIENTS DOWN. EVER.

The way our team works with each other means we're better equipped to serve our clients. We care deeply about our clients and their success. It's not about growing accounts. It's about understanding exactly what our clients need and how we can be their best possible partner. And it shows in the feedback they share:

  • "Shannon is a perfect partner.  Love working with her.  I’m so glad she’s on your team.”
  • "Lexi is organized, articulate, dependable, and fully committed to delivering for us.”
  • "Who you work with matters and Julia's the reason I reached out to you."

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Susan LaMotte, SPHR, Founder + CEO

Susan Strayer LaMotte is exaqueo's founder and CEO. She's well known in HR and business with 20 years of HR, employer brand and talent leadership roles at companies like The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, Marriott International and Corporate Executive Board (CEB). Susan's expertise and thought leadership in employer brand is well known and she's widely cited in and writes for publications like Harvard Business Review, The Wall Street Journal, Forbes, Fast Company, Inc. and The Washington Post. 
Read more about Susan.

"Our clients know they come first. We're always honest, open and committed to delivering the best work possible.
It's the kind of relationship we wanted from our partners when we were in-house in HR, employer brand and talent acquisition roles. Everything we do reflects the unique experience set only our team can bring." 


Lexi Gordon, Chief Operating Officer and Principal Brand Strategist

Lexi's role as our COO is focused on the most important aspect of our operations: client service. In addition to managing client engagements and lending her consumer and employer brand expertise, Lexi oversees exaqueo's engagement management process balancing efficiency and quality for our clients. Lexi's background melds consumer brand, employer brand and consulting working with clients and colleagues around the globe.

Lexi Gordon
  • My home base: Bethesda, Maryland, USA.
  • I'm known as: Always thinking through process and how best to approach things.
  • I'm proud that: I'm a working mom.
  • One of the biggest impacts I have made for a client was: Seeing the evolution of a client team from novice to expert when speaking about employer brand. We're here to make tangible impacts on businesses, but we're also here to support our individual clients and their growth. This particular client was pretty green to the employer brand world in the beginning of the project. As the project progressed, we were part of internal meetings and got to hear our client really start to "talk the talk" to their leaders. It made me smile that we had a part in their professional growth.
  • My team and clients love that I: keep us on track.
  • My energy outside of work is spent on: spending time with my family, which includes my husband, daughter, son, and dog. I also enjoy spending time with friends, going to restaurants, walking through our neighborhood, enjoying a glass of wine, and thinking about possible house renovations.
  • I reward myself by: shopping and an indulgent treat.
  • On my perfect day off I would: wander around Paris.
  • I can't live without: my family, my phone, and some under eye concealer.
  • Get the real resume: over on LinkedIn.
  • Say hi: here at exaqueo or @LexiDGordon.

Shannon Smedstad, Principal Employer Brand Strategist

Attention to detail and exceptional employer brand experience are the hallmarks of Shannon's experience. With a career spanning over 18 years in employer brand, talent acquisition and employee communications, Shannon brings in-house experience from both well-known brands and a prestigious consulting firm. Her role as strategist and engagement manager has her partnering directly with clients to lend her expertise in technology, pharmaceuticals, non-profits and more.

  • My home base: Lehigh Valley, Pennsylvania, USA
  • I'm known as: someone who works hard, and brings creativity and energy to projects.
  • I'm proud that: I've supported a dozen clients, across a variety of industries, during my first year at exaqueo!
  • One of the biggest impacts I have made for a client was: to develop the strategy behind and launch their first-ever global employer brand.
  • My team and clients love that I: feel like a true partner and extension of their teams.
  • My energy outside of work is spent on: being with my amazing family and leading two Girl Scout troops.
  • I reward myself by: running, having a glass of red wine, sleeping in.
  • On my perfect day off I would: go for a hike with my husband, girls and dog, come home and make a big lunch for everyone, build a fire in our fire pit and make s'mores.
  • I can't live without: my paper planner and morning coffee.
  • Get the real resume: over on LinkedIn.
  • Say hi: here at exaqueo or @shannonsmedstad.

Emily Fritz, Employer Brand Strategist

Relationship-building and outstanding engagement management are the hallmarks of Emily’s experience. She brings her in-house marketing, social media, and branding experience from a Fortune 500 and a high-growth software organization. As a brand strategist and engagement manager she partners directly with clients to lend her expertise.

  • My home base: Richmond, Virginia, USA.
  • I’m known as: a conscientious person who takes work seriously. I’m often described as passionate and creative.
  • I’m proud that: during my time leading social recruiting at Northrop Grumman, our strategy was recognized by The Social Recruitment Monitor as the Top Performing U.S. Company using social media for recruitment.
  • One of the biggest impacts I have made for a client was: creating a content strategy and 12-month calendar workbook that was simple to use, flexible, and functional for anyone in the organization to own.
  • My team and clients love that I: have a fearless pursuit to get things done, and a natural ability to listen and provide a unique perspective.
  • My energy outside work is spent on: outdoor adventures, cooking + eating food, and making a home in Richmond with my husband and our two miniature poodles.
  • I reward myself by: shopping, Netflix binges, and drinking champagne.
  • On my perfect day off I would: sleep in, take the poodles to a dog-friendly brunch place and then go explore a nearby park or trail.
  • I can’t live without: my family and coffee.
  • Get the real resume: over on LinkedIn.
  • Say hi: here at exaqueo or @Social_Em.

Chrystal Moore, Employer Brand Strategist

With over 15 years in talent acquisition, Chrystal is known for exceptional client satisfaction due in part by combining her passion for employer branding as well as being highly analytical with a focus on process improvement.  Her role as strategist and engagement manager has her leading client engagements balanced with intimately understanding the talent acquisition process from both an internal and external perspective.

  • My home base: Atlanta, Georgia, USA
  • I'm known as: an optimist. I like the find the silver lining among the clouds.
  • I'm proud that: I'm willing to take risks despite how scary it may be.
  • One of the biggest impacts I've made for a client was: using my extensive talent acquisition experience and applying it to a talent attraction project.
  • My team and clients love that I: am easily accessible and will bend over backwards when assistance is needed.
  • My energy outside of work is spent on: anything and everything related to photography, specifically sports photography. I am the Official Photographer of Allatoona Buccaneers Athletics which means I'm busy from August until May.
  • I reward myself by: buying something insanely expensive for my camera...or let's go all out...another camera body! Just waiting to win the lottery first.
  • On my perfect day off I would: be lounging on the pool deck reading an amazing fiction book with the sounds of birds chirping and the waterfall flowing in the background.
  • I can't live without:my family. I know that's cliche but it's 100% true. There's no me without them.
  • Get the real resume: over on LinkedIn.
  • Say hi: here at exaqueo or @recruitmoore.

Julia Zelenock, Employer Brand Strategist

Julia's experience in consumer brand and marketing brings an eye for alignment to our team and a deep expertise in the fundamentals of marketing. With over 16 years in corporate brand, marketing and communications, Julia brings in-house and international leadership experience with global brands, working in North and South America, Europe and Asia. Her role as strategist and engagement manager has her leading client engagements balanced with strategic brand expertise.

  • My home base: Longview, Texas, USA
  • I'm known as: creative infused with analytical; someone who thinks through situations in 360° to understand why and create ideas for action.
  • I'm proud that: I stay connected with an amazing group of friends and prior colleagues, despite time and geographic distance as if time never passes - especially when we vet an idea or celebrate success!
  • One of the biggest impacts I have made for a client was: leading the internal and external brand, culture and marketing communications conversion of a front-line employee network, across multiple locations amidst a rapid acquisition, while measuring record profits and earning top customer satisfaction ratings.
  • My team and clients love that I: am curious, loyal and truly believe there is always a route to success – if we cannot find it, we create it
  • My energy outside of work is spent on: time with family and friends, exploring back roads, enjoying football in the fall (Don’t mess with my Texas Aggies & Dallas Cowboys), being in/on the water in the summer, snow skiing in the winter and simply being outside anytime in between. 
  • I reward myself by: enjoying a glass of red wine – sometimes in the peace of quiet or sometimes in an engaging conversation.
  • On my perfect day off I would: spend the day boating then relax with a steak/fajitas and glass of wine in front of a fire.  
  • I can't live without: My nephew and nieces. I love being an Aunt and think of them anytime I want to smile.
  • Get the real resume and bio: over on LinkedIn.
  • Say hi: here at exaqueo!

Ian Moore, Employer Brand Strategist

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With global experience from Australia to the UK to the United States, Ian Moore brings over 15 years of employer brand experience to the exaqueo team. With experience in both agency settings and his own consultancy, Ian's expertise comes from working with some of the world's largest, global brands with a particular expertise in diversity, inclusion and wellness.

  • My home base: New York, New York, USA
  • I’m known as: someone who gets the job done.
  • I’m proud that: seen people I’ve recruited flourish and go on to do great things.
  • One of the biggest impacts I have made for a client was: helping a large banking corporation deliver a Diversity & Inclusion Program.
  • My team and clients love that I: am an effective problem solver and keep things simple.
  • My energy outside of work is spent on: keeping fit and healthy.
  • I reward myself by: taking time to remind myself how lucky I am.
  • On my perfect day off I would: go for a run and to the gym, go out with the dogs, and finish it off at a nice restaurant with my wife.
  • I can't live without: shiny new tech!
  • Get the real resume: at LinkedIn
  • Say hi: ian@exaqueo.com

Sarah Thacker, Employer Brand Strategist

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Sarah's experience in both public and private sectors, in addition to her focus on creating workforce and talent solutions through research, innovation, and data will undoubtedly add value to our variety of clients and bring a new perspective to #teamexaqueo. With 10 years of work experience in nonprofit, higher education, and corporate environments, she continues to provide service with a strong passion for people. 

  • My home base: Ann Arbor, Michigan
  • I'm known as: creative, energetic, optimistic, and passionate. Clients and colleagues say my enthusiasm is contagious, and intellect is insightful.
  • I'm proud that: my career has evolved by taking chances and saying, “I can do that!” Every career has shaped my expertise until this point, and I’m proud of the journey I’ve traveled and the successes I’ve achieved. 
  • One of the biggest impacts I have made for a client was: when I lead efforts to bring analytical insights and lean methodologies to a global social media strategy. This allowed the team to track and determine effective data use in decision making for process improvement.
  • My team and clients love that I: let my actions speak louder than words, strong analytical perspective, and that I choose to listen and understand first, and seek to provide the solution.
  • My energy outside of work is spent on: exploring the outdoors (all seasons here in Michigan), sharing adventures with my young daughter, writing, cooking, planning my next trip, and practicing mindfulness
  • I reward myself by: enjoying a great meal and a moscow mule, and taking time to reflect on progress. 
  • On my perfect day off I would: Sleep in, brunch, movies, playing old school video games or board games, and being completely present in the moment.
  • I can't live without: a journal, tacos, intellectual conversation, music, and nature.  
  • Get the real resume and bio: over on LinkedIn.
  • Say hi: here at exaqueo! or @sarah_m_thacker

Neil Harvey, Creative Director

The best in the business, Neil's got a knack for finding just the right creative channel and voice for every employer. As one of the few creative directors in the business with deep, focused experience in employer brand, Neil brings his 20+ years of art direction and creative execution across every continent (save Antarctica) to exaqueo's global client base.

  • My home base: Clerkenwell, London, UK
  • I cut my teeth: in a number of high profile positions within London advertising and communications agencies in the days when Oasis was on repeat and Spotify was the vision of a mad man’s dreams. Now look.
  • I earned my stripes: as a Creative Director with J. Walter Thompson London and at TMP Worldwide as Head of Creative for the UK and Ireland - when a beard meant you were old… Now a beard means you’re young… I’ve never grown a beard. Too itchy. 
  • I'm known as: ‘user friendly’ - non-confrontational but fairly persuasive. Creative arguments are pointless if the work doesn't work. I love work that works.
  • I'm proud that: I’m able to balance the commercial realities of business whilst earning the right to be creative. Creativity is a gift, and shouldn't be assumed. Great ideas are earned so work hard to make them be.
  • One of the biggest impacts I have made for a client was: to be responsible for what the MET Police described as ‘Operational gridlock’ in west London. The irony being the road closure was so we could shoot an employer brand film for the MET Police themselves in how they managed the situation. The ultimate in method acting I guess. It won many awards nonetheless.
  • My team and clients love that I: have to support everything I do with sound effects and wafty hand gestures. I think they love it… yeah, I’m sure they do. Not annoying at all. No, definitely not annoying. Loved.
  • I clocked time in a classroom getting: a BA Hons degree from the Falmouth School of Art and Design. Beautiful place in my heart forever.
  • My energy outside of work is spent on: being IT manager for my children. That’s all I do. 
  • I reward myself by: syphoning off ‘leisure budget’ for anything made of carbon fibre. 
  • On my perfect day off I would: compete in a multi-sport event of some kind followed by the reward of a numerous beers. It’s all about the T-shirt.
  • I can't live without: Tabasco Sauce. Nothing else to add.
  • My latest obsession: at the time of writing this - Cyclocross (this obsession expires in 28 days).
  • My first job: porter at Boots pharmacy. Domesday tannoy announcement - “Can a porter please go to the baby aisle, spillage!”
  • Say hi: here at exaqueo, @ndharvey or @Groupbrand. 

Kathleen O'Brien, Employer Brand Strategist

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With a solutions-focused perspective and a practiced patience for getting it right, Kathleen's clients appreciate her deep commitment to quality. She brings her in-house experience from a F500, multinational firm and a high-growth finance organization. Her role as strategist and engagement manager has her partnering directly with clients to lend her expertise in healthcare, hospitality and more.

  • My home base: St. Louis, Missouri, USA
  • I cut my teeth: starting as an intern and worked my way up in Talent Acquisition for a global, Fortune 500 company.
  • I earned my stripes: leading recruitment marketing at Northrop Grumman and starting up talent strategy at Scottrade.
  • I’m known as: someone who problem solves and spearheads new ideas from concept to completion. I’m often described innovative, dynamic and driven…and recognized for building strategic partnerships and producing results. My start-up mentality fused with my keen business acumen has been key to my success.
  • I’m proud that: during my time leading Recruitment Marketing at Northrop Grumman, we were recognized by The Social Recruitment Monitor as the Top Performing U.S. Company using social media for recruitment (2013) and our employer brand campaign won Best Research Project at the Creative Excellence Awards (2012)
  • One of the biggest impacts I made recently was: establishing social listening/reputation monitoring and using data to drive strategy decisions. My analysis lead to the executive leadership team putting resources towards employee engagement and employer brand initiatives.
  • My team loves that I: have a passion for what I do, have the natural ability to build commitment and practice continuous improvement by focusing on data to help drive decisions.
  • I clocked my time in a classroom getting: a BS in Marketing from Virginia Tech and a leadership certificate from Leadership Fairfax’s Emerging Leaders Institute (ELI).
  • My energy outside work is spent on: quality time with family and friends, working out, being outdoors, channeling my creative side (through photography, design, painting, cooking etc) and community service (Junior League)
  • I reward myself by: 1) Shopping, 2) enjoying a fine wine or craft beer (paired with something delicious like chocolate or cheese), or 3) all of the above
  • On my perfect day off I would: sleep in, eat my favorite meal (brunch) and go on a new adventure with my husband
  • I can’t live without: my camera. I love capturing memories anywhere/everywhere. When shooting on my iPhone, I give a new meaning to #nofilter…I’m that nerd who doesn’t use Instagram presets and instead manually edits my own photos.
  • My latest obsessions: are decorating and gardening. We've just moved into a new house and my creative juices are flowing! Of course, I’ve already created multiple inspiration boards on Pinterest and Houzz.
  • My first job: I got my first real W-2 as a soccer referee at 14 and outside of the corporate world, I’ve been a hotel front desk associate, hostess, waitress, babysitter, photographer and lacrosse coach.
  • Get the real resume: over on LinkedIn.
  • Say hi: here at exaqueo or @kathleen_eliz.

Pete Radloff, Lead Consultant

  • My home base: Reston, VA, USA
  • I cut my teeth: as a recruiter with Randstad and Sapphire Technologies.
  • I earned my stripes: in recruiting leadership roles with organizations including NPR, comScore and LivingSocial recruiting both in the U.S. and abroad for these companies, and developing successful recruitment frameworks, college and university programs, recruitment processes and procedures, and enhancements to the candidate experience to enhance employer brand.
  • I'm known as: one of the best recruiting strategists in the business. I've been in the trenches and developed recruiting programs from scratch for multi-million dollar companies.
  • I'm proud that: I've made it through several rounds of recruitment systems selection and implementation, including vendor selection and came out alive. I also serve on the Board of Directors for RecruitDC.
  • One of the biggest impacts I have made for a client was: making a proposal to overhaul a lagging Applicant Tracking System for a extremely fast-growing startup. Over the course of 6 months, I stripped the system down to the shell and re-built it from the ground up and relaunched it company wide. this gave managers access to the system, improved communications and reduced time to hire by 15+ days.
  • My team and clients love that I: have a passion for what I do, and get genuinely excited about how to introduce and improve processes. 
  • I clocked time in a classroom getting: a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology from the State University of New York, and  several AIRS Certifications.
  • My energy outside of work is spent on: spending time with my wife and kids, yoga, watching sports - especially Islanders hockey and Clemson football - or playing soccer. Oh, and geeking out on a good book at the beach.
  • I reward myself by: carving out time for myself to do not much of anything but read and relax. 
  • On my perfect day off I would: be at the beach, or camping in the woods, somewhere traffic and crowds do not exist.
  • I can't live without: my family, they are my rock. And music. I work and play to music, and the genres are all over the board!
  • My latest obsession: whatever my kids are into at that moment, taming my jade tree and focusing on some beach time.
  • My first job: working at a Dairy Barn at 14, which was a drive through market across the street from my house. It was a small place, so everyone kind of ran the whole store when they worked.
  • Get the real resume: over on LinkedIn.
  • Say hi: here at exaqueo or @PJRadloff.

Nihar Ragunath, Consultant

  • My home base: Bangalore, India
  • I cut my teeth: in traditional advertising and market research with Breeze Advertising, Canon, and Global Industry Analysts.
  • I earned my stripes: at TMI Network (a Hodes Network partner), Monster & TMP Worldwide in working on some of the biggest global corporate accounts in India and develop their employer brand campaigns.
  • I'm known as: dependable, hardworking and a focused person and will think for the customer always.
  • I'm proud that: I have worked, learned and gained experience that has not only yielded results for my customers but also I have made friends who add value in my life both at professional and personal front.
  • One of the biggest impacts I have made for a client was: in developing their brand campaigns and high impact awareness to create relevant response from target audiences, especially when you are localizing global brands.
  • My team and clients love that I: am approachable, will listen to their concerns or issues and help them to overcome any such problems that stand in their way to succeed. 
  • I clocked time in a classroom getting: a Masters in International Management from Pondicherry University and a degree in science from University of Madras.
  • My energy outside of work is spent on: listening to music, travel new places, watching movies, spending time with family and friends, trying new food outlets.
  • I reward myself by: relaxing at home or vacation.
  • On my perfect day off I would: go out with my family to a place preferably a new one and enjoy ourselves to unwind. 
  • I can't live without: music and Indian spicy food especially from Andhra Pradesh.
  • My latest obsession: charcoal painting.
  • My first job: doing market research for Canon and explore business growth opportunities in photo copier and document solution business in Hyderabad, India.
  • Get the real resume: over on LinkedIn
  • Say hi: here at exaqueo.

Candace Deuster, Administrative Associate

  • My home base: Palm Harbor, FL, USA
  • I'm known as: keeper of the schedules.
  • I'm proud that: I earned my A.A degree at 19 years old, B.A at 21 years old and M.Ed at 23 years old.
  • One of the biggest impacts I have made for a client was: while I was working for a litigation software company as a corporate trainer, I was able to teach a group of government officials how to properly manage and input their legal documents and data into a litigation database program. They subsequently won a well-known government lawsuit.
  • My team and clients love that I: am organized and that I can juggle multiple schedules and projects at one time.
  • My energy outside of work is spent on: my boy/girl twins and cooking up yummy desserts.
  • I reward myself by: eating birthday cake Halo Top ice cream.
  • On my perfect day off I would: go rollerblading on our local trail and eating lunch in downtown Dunedin.
  • I can't live without: my children's laughter.
  • Say hi: here at exaqueo.

Elizabeth Meyer, Marketing and Communications Associate

  • My home base: Richmond, Virginia, USA.
  • I'm known as: a hard worker who likes to take the lead.
  • I'm proud that: I can balance working with such a great team while still being a college student.
  • My team and clients love that I: am organized and not afraid to speak up.
  • My energy outside of work is spent on: being a student at the University of Richmond, participating in collegiate mock trial and spending time with friends.
  • I reward myself by: watching the Good Wife and going to bed early.
  • On my perfect day off I would: unplug and spend a day at the lake.
  • I can't live without: my planner, Earl Grey tea and dark chocolate.
  • Say hi: here at exaqueo or on LinkedIn.