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Alum Paul Kraml Relishes Success in
Fast-Paced Advertising World


West Windsor, N.J. - Paul Kraml '85 (A.S., Advertising Design) wears many professional hats and he would not have it any other way. As creative director/public relations manager for the New Jersey Office of the Attorney General (OAG), Kraml utilizes his artistic abilities and advertising savvy to create public outreach campaigns advocating for the safety of all New Jersey citizens.

Kraml and his team have launched numerous campaigns for the OAG's Department of Law and Public Safety and its 12 divisions such as Alcohol Beverage Control, Consumer Affairs, Civil Rights, Gaming Enforcement and State Police. Each division is featured on the OAG website, which Kraml redesigned from the ground up several years ago.

No day is ever alike for this communications point person. One might find Kraml designing brochures, posters, billboards and transit advertising one moment, and then posting press releases or producing promotional videos. His office's campaigns have included "Drive Friendly" as a reminder to New Jersey motorists; "Our Careers Suit All Kinds of People" for a State Police recruitment effort; and the "Be Powerful, Be Heard" voting campaign, among many others.

Paul Kraml '85

"I absolutely love coming up with fresh ideas," Kraml said. "Graphic design has always been the visual form of public relations. The challenges during these hard economic times are lack of funds and resources. It's very difficult and expensive to promote New Jersey's messages, sandwiched as we are between New York and Philadelphia, two of the largest advertising markets in the country, but we work effectively to meet all demands."

Initially seeking to follow in the footsteps of his draftman/engineer father's, Kraml credits Mercer for preparing him to succeed in the multi-dimensional graphic design field. "I did not know all that was available to me until I got to Mercer," said Kraml, who chose MCCC due to its close proximity and affordability. After studying architecture for a year, Kraml switched to Advertising Design. "It was one of the best decisions I ever made," notes the Steinert High School graduate.

Designing a logo for City Gardens, a punk/new wave club in Trenton, was one of the memorable professional projects Kraml completed while attending Mercer. Exposed to the real world of graphic design while still in school, Kraml learned to stay ahead of the curve. "The faculty was great. I learned a lot."
During his second year at MCCC, Kraml established his own graphic design company, Kraml Design, and landed a part-time internship as a draftsman/graphic artist for the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (DEP).

Upon graduating from Mercer, Kraml stayed on at the DEP, taking on a broad array of graphic design assignments as he rose through the ranks. These included designing for New Jersey Outdoors magazine, creating the New Jersey Outdoors website, and creating layouts for departmental and divisional publications.

Kraml notes that his varied assignments thoroughly prepared him for the position he landed in 1999 as art director/internet coordinator at the OAG to increase its web presence and to enhance its public image and outreach. He landed his current post in 2001.

This entrepreneur in his own right has also found time to keep Kraml Design alive and well. Among his long list of clients are the Trenton Titans, the NJ Devils, De Lorenzo's Tomato Pies, and the New Jersey Aviation Association.

Kraml can't remember a time when he was not in creative mode. As early as age 2, he was at his father's side, observing him in action. His dad, who was a freelance cartoonist for newspapers while serving in the Air Force in England, continued this work when he returned home. It also helped that Kraml's great uncle Joe, who worked at the now defunct Magic Marker factory in Trenton, periodically brought him sets of professional art markers.

Just as his father and uncle planted the seed for his creativity, Kraml is considering doing the same for community college students one day. "I want to give back to students the same professional knowledge my professors gave to me," he says. "Community college is always a great option, especially if you are not sure of exactly what you want to do."

In terms of career paths, Kraml's advice is clear. "Do what you love even if it pays less. You can't buy happiness. It is true that if you do what you love you'll never work a day in your life."

Visit Kraml Design here.

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