Clint Schaff - Former Producer and Founder, LA Times Studios
Mary Anne Radmacher wrote that “Your responsibility is to be an explorer, not a tourist in this adventure that is your life.” Our guest today took up that challenge from the time he was a kid: dreaming of robots, searching for community, and as he got older, discovering and amplifying stories that matter, at one of the biggest news agencies in the world. His professional expeditions have been so varied that his very impressive career resists categorization. So instead, we’ll lean in as he parts the curtain and we jointly consider this question:
What makes a career meaningful?
A conversation with Clint Schaff, former producer and founder of L.A. Times Studios, on this episode of Lead With a Question.
Clint Schaff is award-winning producer of audio, television, film, and live-event projects, and a communicator and connector for social good. He works independently, with media and journalism organizations, with cultural institutions, and with brands and companies. In 2020, Adweek honored Clint as one of its Creative 100, which celebrates the 100 most inspiring minds in marketing, media and culture, and as one of ten honorees in the category of Media Innovators.
Since moving to Bentonville, Arkansas in 2021, Clint has been busy. He has founded FIXIN, which brings to market media products that have an intention to positively change the world, and distributed its first full-length music album, “Bring On The…” from PARISHES. In 2022, Clint joined the campaign to elect Chris Jones—the physicist/minister/educator/non-profit leader, and Democratic nominee for Governor of Arkansas—as the campaign’s communications director.
Best known for his work as Vice President of Strategy and Development at the Los Angeles Times, Clint was the first employee and founding operator of L.A. Times Studios, and was responsible for the development and programming of various audio, video and experiential projects. Successful projects include the immensely popular Dirty John podcast and two seasons of Dirty John, the television series franchise (which aired on Bravo and USA networks for Seasons 1 and 2, respectively). Clint has led the development and business-side operations around many successful podcasts, including Man In the Window, Larger Than Life, Room 20, Chasing Cosby, It Was Simple: The Betty Broderick Murders, The Trials of Frank Carson, Asian Enough and The Times: Daily news from the L.A. Times. At the Los Angeles Times, Clint has led several strategic initiatives and launched new platforms including L.A. Times Today, an Emmy-winning nightly news magazine show on Spectrum News 1 SoCal; the Newstory storytelling festival, which brought five stages of cutting-edge tech-driven medium stories to the long-standing L.A. Times Festival of Books; and the upcoming launch of L.A. Times Short Docs, which introduces established and emerging filmmakers through the company's opinion section.
Prior to Los Angeles Times, Clint was U.S. General Manager directing all domestic operations, creative and account activities for Vision7 integrated advertising teams in Los Angeles and New York. Before that, Clint served as a Vice President for digital at two leading global agencies, Edelman and Golin. Over the course of his career, he has earned praise and awards for his work with high-profile brands and organizations including Procter & Gamble, Activision, Nintendo, Nestle, POM Wonderful, FIJI Water, Wonderful Pistachios, the Clinton-Gore White House, David Bowie, and the New York Yankees,.
Clint has a BA in Communications & Political Science from the University of Minnesota and a MA from the University of Southern California Annenberg School for Communications and Journalism. After earning his graduate degree from USC, he returned to USC Annenberg for 10 years to teach as an adjunct instructor.
Clint lives in Bentonville, Arkansas, and enjoys hosting Hip Hop Hello—a weekly radio show on both 103.3 KOBV Bentonville Community Radio and KUAF Fayetteville NPR affiliate, rapping hip hop karaoke, attending live sporting events and concerts, and nature walks with his wife Jessica, doggy Mia, and Baby Carter.