Capitol Communicator is running “Up Close and Personal” profiles of communicators in the mid-Atlantic.  In this profile we feature Diz Cohrs.  Photography for the series is by Cade Martinwardrobe styling by Pascale Lemaire and Sybil Street for THE Artist Agency; and hair and makeup by Patti D Nelson, Janice Kinigopoulos and Lori Pressman for THE Artist Agency.

Please provide us a short bio.

My name is Diz – well, actually, it’s Dörthe, but nobody can pronounce it, so I go by Diz – and I’m an Associate Creative Director and Writer at HZ. Originally, I’m from Germany, but I got my master’s degree from VCU’s Brandcenter and have worked as a copywriter ever since. I’ve been with HZ for almost 10 years now, and I create ideas, concepts, strategies, and copy for anything that needs a word or two or three thousand.

Are you involved in any other organizations?

I admit I’m not really involved in any professional organizations, although I like to attend Creative Mornings, RefreshDC, and AAF DC events whenever time allows. I am a member of the 501st Legion (Star Wars fan club) and other costuming groups, does that count?

What are the things you are most proud of?

When it comes to creative, probably whatever I and my team just finished. I think it’s important to be proud of everything you do, don’t you? And then there is that special pride you get when you see others on your team excelling—and knowing that you had at least a small part in helping them get there.

Who are your personal role models?

Maybe not role models per se, but definitely people who inspired me. My mom, of course, who was very easy-going and loved to travel. One of my professors at the Brandcenter, Coz Cotzias, who was tough, but only because he cared. And each and every one of my creative directors and colleagues who helped me get where I am today.

Did your role models offer professional advice that helped you in your career?

“Have fun.” “You’re only as good as how you make your partner look.” “Always have your team’s back.”

What professional advice do you have for others?

Don’t be an a**hole. Check your ego at the door and be a good partner. Great ideas can come from anywhere, and people will always surprise you when you’re nice enough to give them a chance.

What’s on your Spotify or Pandora playlists?

I listen to goth, industrial, punk, new wave, etc., so I like to challenge those apps with such bands as Alien Sex Fiend, Bella Morte, David Bowie, Stromkern, Bauhaus, Joy Division, and so on.

What’s your favorite restaurant?

DC is exploding with amazing places, but my fave is ANXO. It’s just a few blocks from my house, is gorgeously designed, has the best cider selection, an ever-changing menu of tasty small dishes—and the friendliest people ever.

Is there anything else you would like us to know about you?

I like making costumes and going to sci-fi/fantasy conventions, renaissance festivals, and other events that allow you to dress up and immerse yourself in experiences that are completely different from ordinary life. It’s a lot of fun, and you meet some very interesting people. And sometimes you just make someone’s day, like when my husband and I dressed up as Imperial Officers from Star Wars and escorted a six-year-old Darth Vader in a Halloween Parade. I actually had to hold his hand since he couldn’t see with his mask on, but when he finally took it off, he had the biggest grin ever.



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