An agency built on your success.
ON Advertising was founded in 1993 and is owned by John Hernandez, Eric Garcia, and Ron Meritt.
Over the years, ON has developed a reputation for being one of the most creative, accountable advertising agencies in the Southwest and beyond. We have built a culture of client service where an open flow of ideas is encouraged and every strategy is shaped with a business objective in mind. We provide an exceptional range of marketing, advertising, creative, public relations, digital services and event services to a client base that spans some of the best-known brands in a broad spectrum of industries. Meet the team that leads our agency.
Eric began his career in 1991 as an Assistant Art Director at Robinson & St. John Advertising in Florida. While at RSJ, he was part of the team that produced advertising and marketing campaigns for national and regional accounts including AT&T, Bank Boston, Ford Motor Company, and Wendy’s Restaurants. His talent as an illustrator was also utilized in a number of campaigns developed by RSJ.
In 1995, Eric launched his own multidisciplinary design firm, EFG Creative, in Albuquerque, NM. Wanting to expand to the Arizona market, EFG came to the valley looking for an advertising agency to pair with. In January 2018, EFG merged with ON Advertising.
As a hands-on designer Eric has a meticulous eye for detail and a fresh graphic style. Eric is a fine artist and a native of New Mexico.
Using his vast knowledge of fine art, Eric founded EG Structural. EG Structural, has won several public art awards in the US. Please visit egstructural.com to learn more.
Ron opened ON Advertising after working in television for many years. He wanted to take skills honed in his broadcasting career to help clients navigate the ever-changing media landscape. As President, Ron oversees day-to-day operations at the agency while guiding the strategy, client service and performance. He does this by uniting a unique combination of strategic thinking and business innovation.
In addition, Ron manages the agency’s Crisis and Issues Management division. Ron leads a nationally-accredited seminar that provides training for clients on how to communicate in crisis situations and manage the impact of a crisis. His depth of experience and expertise is unrivaled in this area.
Ron has degrees in Broadcasting and Public Relations from Northern Arizona University and in Meteorology from Mississippi State University.
Prior to ON Advertising, Darren honed his skills as an Account Executive for six years at EG Structural, ON’s sister company. Joining ON Advertising in August 2017, Darren climbed the ranks quickly, ascending to Vice President of Marketing by 2019. In this capacity, he supervised all clients and oversaw marketing, social media, and web services within the Account Services Division. Known for his strategic acumen and supervisory prowess, Darren was entrusted with all marketing and PR accounts.
In 2023, he was appointed President & General Manager, where he assumes responsibility for daily agency operations and staff development. He offers strategic recommendations to owners regarding agency structure and operations. His comprehensive expertise and leadership abilities underscore Darren’s integral role in the success of ON Advertising.
With over 20 years of marketing experience, Dawn is a seasoned media operations and strategy expert. Her impressive track record includes collaborating with some of Arizona’s most rapidly expanding agencies. She has been instrumental in empowering brands across diverse industries throughout her career, consistently delivering award-winning work. Dawn’s approach revolves around a strategic mindset, prioritizing high-touch media planning, seamless execution, and comprehensive analytics to achieve outstanding results for our clients. Her expertise and dedication make her an invaluable asset to our team, driving our company’s media endeavors to new heights.
Catie joined the ON team in 2020 as the Director of Events and Marketing, a role which she priorly held at Evans Communications. In 2023, she assumed the role of Director of Marketing Strategies. The Arizona native previously worked as a publicist in Los Angeles and as a PR consultant for a luxury marketing firm in Paris, France. She leads key event accounts with a results-oriented approach to produce meaningful and impactful events of all sizes from intimate networking events and fundraising galas to international conferences. She leads on all aspects of event planning from strategic development, timeline and budget management, event design and theme creation, vendor negotiation and management, on-site implementation and attendee and staff coordination.
Michelle has significant marketing and social media experience in an array of different industries from hospitality to commercial real estate. She manages our social media department, overseeing all client and internal social media operations for our agency. Michelle is dedicated to keeping audiences engaged in the content and using new and inventive tactics to keep the client’s social media fresh.
Candice is an accomplished and versatile professional with a diverse background in media coordination, buying, and sales across renowned companies in the global media industry. She harbors a passion for the dynamic world of advertising and publishing, and has honed her expertise through various roles in esteemed organizations such as Conde Nast in Sydney, Ogilvy and DraftFCB in Auckland, and Pan Macmillan in London. Candice holds a Bachelor of Business in Advertising from AUT in Auckland, New Zealand.
In her role as Director of Project Management, Candice utilizes her extensive experience and leadership skills to oversee and execute complex projects. Her keen eye for detail, strategic thinking, and ability to coordinate cross-functional teams ensure the successful delivery of campaigns.
Along with Eric, Katie Ely assists in overseeing all creative output of the agency. She brings extensive experience in brand storytelling and creating successful integrated campaigns.
Originally from South Carolina, Katie began her career at Erwin Penland, where she worked on accounts such as Verizon, Denny’s, and Hanes. Upon relocating to the Valley in 2012, she continued to expand her skills by offering graphic design and art direction services to a range of clients including Disney, Grand Canyon University, Valley Metro, the Phoenix Suns, the Arizona Office of Tourism, and PXG. While she has executed numerous campaigns, both large and small, her greatest passions lie in branding, logo development, and graphic design as a whole.
Katie’s curiosity and dedication to staying ahead of industry trends enable her to navigate and innovate within today’s ever-evolving creative landscape.