Artists First Appoints Caroline Soss & Curtis Shaw Flagg As Managers

EXCLUSIVE: Artists First has today announced its promotion of Caroline Soss to Manager, and its hire of Curtis Shaw Flagg in the same role.

Clients of recently appointed Talent Manager Soss, who specializes in developing global artists, include Lyrica Okano (Marvel’s Runaways), Dan Leahy (Reboot), Katie Parker (The Haunting of Hill House), Jeffrey Bowyer-Chapman (Doogie Kamealoha, M.D.) and Nicholas Ralph (All Creatures Great and Small).

The Philadelphia native started at Artists First as an intern in 2015 and, after graduating from Syracuse University;s S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications, joined Artists First full-time assisting Kimberlin Belloni and Maggie Haskins (who was promoted to Partner last year). Soss then moved on to work for Co-President David Gardner, also serving as the company’s Drama Talent Coordinator prior to her latest promotion.

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Illinois native Flagg studied Bioinformatics at Marian University before moving to Chicago and pivoting his career to live entertainment in 2010. He subsequently split his time between for-profit at Laugh Factory Chicago and non-profit as the Director of Marketing and External Community Partnerships at Open Books, before being promoted in 2013 to Manager at Laugh Factory Chicago, where he presided over operations and booking for a decade. Flagg joins Artists First to rep comedic talent, touring, and personal appearance and will be based out of the company’s Chicago office.

“Artists First exists to cultivate prosperity for its clients and colleagues,” said Co-Presidents E. Brian Dobbins and Gardner, “and the addition of these extraordinary young managers provides us with the strength to continue to see that vision through.”

Artists First has also today announced the addition of Matt Shepley as Drama Talent Coordinator, along with the promotion of Katie Zipkin-Leed to Literary Coordinator.

Shepley joined from Principal Entertainment LA, where he was an assistant to a partner. He prior to that served as a Voiceover Booth Director for CESD LA, directing top voiceover talent on their auditions. The University of Missouri-Columbia grad began his career in Chicago as a Broadcast Producer, working at high end ad agencies producing national TV, radio and internet commercials. 

Zipkin-Leed assisted partners Maggie Haskins and Allen Fischer prior to her promotion to Literary Coordinator. The Tulane grad hailing from L.A. launched her career in entertainment within UTA’s mailroom in 2019, working in the agency’s TV talent department before making the transition to Artists First.

Both new coordinators will be based out of the company’s L.A. office.

The talent management and production company Artists First, focused on actors, writers, directors and producers in film, television, and digital media, boasts a roster that also includes Martin Lawrence, Awkwafina, Kenya Barris, Anthony Anderson, Tracee Ellis Ross, Niecy Nash, Ed Helms, Will Arnett, Ike Barinholtz, Paul Walter Hauser, Kate McKinnon, Michael Showalter, Jon M. Chu, Lior Raz, Mitch Hurwitz and Cristela Alonzo, among others. Notable past productions across film and TV include Central Intelligence, Like a Boss, Keanu, Black-ish, Mixed-ish, Grown-ish, The Last O.G., Hit and Run and Reno 911!.

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