Linda Hill, longtime local marketing agency owner, passes the torch |

Linda Hill, longtime local marketing agency owner, passes the torch

Megan Talbott, left, has purchased Hill Aevium from Linda Hill, right. After 25 years of marketing agency ownership and more than 35 years in the industry, Hill, president of the Edwards-based marketing firm, has announced her retirement.
Courtesy photo

After 25 years of marketing agency ownership and more than 35 years in the industry, Linda Hill, the president of Edwards-based Hill Aevium, has announced her retirement. Hill has sold her firm to Megan Talbott, who will be making a return to Eagle County.

Hill is well known for her marketing acumen, entrepreneurial leadership and passion for community service. She will move into a president-emeritus position and help transition alongside Talbott the integrated marketing firm that focuses on branding, marketing, advertising and website development through the spring of 2023.

“I am absolutely thrilled to reintroduce Megan to the Vail Valley and to our clients,” Hill said in a release announcing the news. “She is looking forward to carrying on what I was able to start. Her talents will be a tremendous asset to the agency and our community.”

The offices will remain in Edwards with a name change to The Blackbird Agency. Valued clients include Glenwood Hot Springs Resort, Knapp Ranch, Betty Ford Alpine Gardens and Denver Regional Council of Governments.

“It’s rare that clients find a marketing and advertising agency they want to work with for 24 years,” says Kjell Mitchell, the president and CEO of Glenwood Hot Springs Resort. “That is what we found in Hill Aevium. Linda and I have worked together for that long and she and her team have helped guide the marketing, advertising and branding efforts of our resort over the many years. We look forward to continuing this relationship with the team, Megan and The Blackbird Agency.” 

Support Local Journalism

According to the Advertising Association of America, the nonprofit organization that supports the advertising industry, there are 14,000 ad agencies across the continent, yet less than 1 percent are owned by women.

The fact that Hill was able to pass the ownership torch to another female leader is icing on the cake.

“While it wasn’t a driving factor, I am so pleased to be able to turn over the reins to Megan who will bring her vast experience and confidence to sustain and grow the agency with all staff staying in place,” Hill said.

For her part, Talbott, who early in her career relocated from New York City to Eagle County in the ’90s to take a position with the technology startup, Eagle River Interactive, says she is proud to carry the Hill Aevium torch: “Linda’s ability to build really amazing, long-term relationships both professionally and personally is also my philosophy on how to work with clients.

“I absolutely love this diverse portfolio of clients and I am proud to have the opportunity to grow the business alongside an amazing staff and with clients who are doing good things for the world — my experience and skill set match up so well.”

Talbott graduated from Stanford University with a bachelor’s degree in American Studies. She interned at Grey Advertising in San Francisco while in college, working on the Bank of America account, which led to a position in Account Management at Grey Advertising in New York City. She continued broadening her experience and growing her career in advertising at several New York agencies.

This eventually led to a role at the technology startup, Eagle River Interactive, in Eagle County. She purchased a house in Minturn and started her family in the valley.

Eagle River Interactive grew quickly and became and the headquarters were relocated to New York City, as part of the Omnicom network. The Talbott family and their careers relocated to the Midwest with Megan working for a Dallas-based agency that is part of the Publicis network, and her husband was working for architecture firms in Chicago and St. Louis.

Born and raised in Hollywood, Calif., Hill moved to Eagle County in late 1976 after graduating from San Diego State University.

“My first intention was to move to the Aspen/Snowmass area to work with children at the Aspen Camp of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing founded by Reed Harris and which John Denver had philanthropically adopted in 1974,” she said. “Thinking I could apply my Recreation and Communications degree that specialized in working with special needs kids, I landed a job and then realized I would not be able to make a living so had to put that goal on hold. A couple friends had moved to Vail, so I called them up and the rest is history.”

Hill was the general manager of Vail Guides from 1977 to 1982, running jeep tours and rafting trips for visitors to Vail. The company, then owned by Jim Rea, grew to become the first scheduled transportation service from Denver to Vail (precursor to what is now Epic Mountain Express) while maintaining the summer business of Jeep tours and rafting. 

Hill moved on in 1982 to become a national sales manager at the then-Vail Resort Association with Paula Palmateer as CEO and Frank Johnson as VP of marketing.

She was hired as an account executive in 1984 at Tashiro Marketing & Advertising, Inc. run by Harvey Tashiro. The agency focused on the hospitality industry, and a diversification effort began to include destination marketing organizations. The agency grew and Hill bought the business from Tashiro in 1997, renaming the agency to Hill & Company. Hill quickly launched a second round of diversification that expanded into health care, banking, technology and the service sectors while keeping the agency’s core marketing and branding business in hospitality and tourism.

In 2009, Hill bought Aevium Interactive, a website design and development company in Denver. This expanded the footprint with a second office in Denver and a rebranding to Hill Aevium.

“I have always thrived on building marketing efforts and research-based strategies with the ultimate goal of improving a client’s bottom line,” Hill said. “I have been fortunate to have had some great mentors and to always have a great team in place. The strong client relationships we have been able to forge contributed to our growth through the years. I don’t pretend to know everything and have always been able to rely on our strong creative and account management talent to create award-winning work and deliver strong results for our clients.”

“After such a great ride, I began looking for my next journey a few years ago and am thrilled to have been able to sell Hill Aevium to Megan Talbott,” Hill added. “In her hands and with her vast experience the agency will thrive and grow beyond where it is today.”

Support Local Journalism