Welcome To The Agency: A Chat with Jada Ogden of SCOUT

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When the term “Ladyboss” comes to mind, we instantly think of Jada Ogden, Agency Director of SCOUT Modeling and Talent in San Francisco. This woman alone is the definition of what powerful means. Can we get a “YASSS.”

Being a “people person” goes a long way with Jada, now coming into her 13th year in the biz, Jada has seen the era of model shift in and out of the market. We got to sit down with her for a minute to talk about everything agency and of course, how she gets down on the weekends.

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BC: “Tell us a bit more about yourself pre-agent, what were you up too before?

JO: “I’ve always worked under a creative umbrella at one time or another. My background ranges from advertising (was an Art Buyer and in Graphic Design) visual merchandising/retail, producing, PR/Special events, I like to use both the left and right sides of my brain - which is what attracted me to my current position. I’m very visual; being involved with photography and the production of beautiful imagery for our models just came naturally. (side note: As a kid - I used to tear pages out of fashion magazines and then bind them back together to create my own magazine. If only it were that easy haha) As the years went on and my position shifted to Agency Director - I had to take a step back from the things I loved doing with the new faces and focus more on the business building side of the agency. Luckily, Scout still gives me more creative freedom than I’ve had in any other position!

Jada’s personality is overly likable the second you come in contact with her. Whether she’s recommending a Bay Area watering hole to spend your night or a jam to put on in your car - fun times are immediately to be had in her presence. But being Agency Director must come with it’s territory - we wonder how does the day to day occur with modeling platforms?

JO: “There is no “typical” day at the agency; I think that’s one of the things I love the most, no one day is like the last! I’m always working with new clients - new hopeful models walking in the door. We are all hustlers here, but my co-workers definitely keep things lively. We’re pretty much laughing and having a good time all day long!’

My role is never-ending, aside from being agent at any given time, I’m also a “manager/friend/travel agent/sister/second-mom/therapist/life coach.” My day usually begins with answering emails - (side note: not exactly glamorous!)  following up with models about castings, chatting with clients about upcoming projects, connecting models with photographers to help build their portfolios, making arrangements for models to travel to other markets in the US and abroad.”

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Being an agent in liberal San Francisco comes at many challenges for Ogden, signing the right people for the job while balancing many other US markets can come as an overwhelming factor -

JO: “I’m really lucky to be able to say that I LOVE what I do, however, one of the challenges that I encounter with being an agent has to do with body image/perception, and how to handle that - especially with the younger girls/guys. The San Francisco market is a bit more forgiving when it comes to “ideal” size. It really runs the gamete from small/slim, to curvy, to plus-size, there is definitely work for every type of model in San Francisco. I’m also very conscious of making sure our men and women’s boards are representative of the world we live in. I feel as though we have one of the most diverse boards in SF! I constantly hear from clients and potential models, that they were really struck with the diversity of models on our website and that’s what prompted them to contact us. It is definitely a reflection of the Bay Area!“

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BC: “What does 2016 hold for Jada?

JO: “ I definitely have the travel bug! My position takes me all over for scouting and meeting with agencies to place our models with: LA/NY/MIAMI/SEATTLE/DENVER/TEXAS/CHICAGO/CANADA/AUSTRALIA. I always try to mix in a little fun on my works trips, which is easy to do in this business. Kind of comes with the territory - networking and getting to really know our models and clients. On a personal note: I’ll be heading to one of my favorite places in Mexico again: Sayulita. My travel “wish list” this year is quite the mix: Austin, TX / Iceland / Belize and I have to attend Art Basel in Miami at least once!”

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Now time to live like Jada, where does this Bay Area babe of 17 years like to get down:

JO: “I’ve been working in San Francisco for about 17 years but I’m an East Bay girl at heart. Living in Oakland, I get the best of both worlds! I used to hang out in SF all the time in my 20’s - but I prefer staying around Oakland these days. So many amazing places to eat and drink, beautiful areas to hang outside, great weather. Currently, my favorite restaurant is Shakewell on Lakeshore Ave (helps that its one block from my apartment - I’m probably there TOO often.) You’ll definitely catch me anywhere that old school hip-hop is playing. If I wasn’t in the fashion biz, I would be in the music industry. Goal for 2016: start back DJ'ing again!”

Photos and story by Anthony Rogers
Styling by Becca Mikesell
Hair and MUA: Rachel Renae 

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