Telly Noel Sr.

COO, Media Director, Principal

The Design Group

Little Rock

Age: 36


Telly Noel Sr.

Telly Noel hasn’t abandoned who he is or where he’s from to be a business executive, and he credits his father as the inspiration for his work.

“Watching him work his entire life as a factory worker to provide for his three sons, so that I may have the opportunity to go to college ... drives me to do even more. I have a responsibility to show him appreciation by achieving,” Noel said.

That helps make Noel passionate about his business endeavors in Little Rock.

Noel began his media career working for Citadel Broadcasting as an on-air personality and developing radio advertising.

He has also worked for Frontline Event Marketing and Advantage Communications, and he founded and dissolved Media Concepts Inc., all in Little Rock.

Noel started his niche marketing firm, The Design Group, in 2007 with his cousin Myron Jackson. The firm creates marketing campaigns targeted at urban, youth, Latino and black populations.

“I live, I work, I play in the African-American community, so I walk the walk, talk the talk, speak the language. Our shop understands the ethnic market, while many others do not,” Noel said. “There’s a need for what we do, where it is 50 percent black and brown. Who’s talking to them?”

In addition, Noel, as a volunteer, coaches youth baseball and football in southwest Little Rock, the area from where he came.

Noel’s entrepreneurship crosses business sectors: Besides The Design Group, he owns a lounge, a dry-cleaning company, a car detailing shop and a hair salon.

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