As the founder of creative agency Crown + Conquer, April McDaniel works with brands to create experiences and events to promote their product and share their story.

In this episode of “LA Stories,” McDaniel opens up to host “Giselle Fernandez” about her work with a variety of brands, including Adidas, Google Pixel and Spotify.

🎧 Hear the LA Stories: Unfiltered podcast version of this interview 

Listen at the top of this page or on your favorite podcast app:
Apple | Spotify | Google | Amazon

McDaniel is sought after by Fortune 500 companies looking for the “it” factor — and she knows how to bring it.

“I’m definitely somebody that requires excellence,” she said. “We’re creating in truth. We create a story, and we really are able to tell it through that truthful manner.”

McDaniel’s success did not come easily. At just 33 years old, she was left a widow and forced to raise her two young sons on her own. According to McDaniel, the experience inspired her to create Crown + Conquer.

“Once you’ve been through a high level of trauma, I think there’s no place but up,” she said. “I think it was just inner fire, and the inner fire to not conform.”

Through grit and grace, McDaniel made it through. Her perseverance has inspired many — including her A-lister friends, such as Adele, who dedicated her album “30” to McDaniel, honoring her for overcoming the trauma the way she did.

These days, McDaniel is thinking about her legacy. The unexpected death of her husband taught her how important it is to make good use of the time you have.

“That’s all you have to stand on is legacy,” she said. “I think it’s important to figure out what will supersede you when you’re gone.”

McDaniel hopes her legacy will live on not only through her sons but also through the opportunities she’s set up for future generations interested in the creative field.

Crown + Conquer has partnered with Getty and Wire Image to diversify the red carpet by offering internship programs to under-resourced kids, and McDaniel has created similar opportunities for students taking part in the nonprofit City Year.

“I want to be able to do things that leave impact past me, past Crown & Conquer,” she said. “Just opportunity for others is important for me.”

Watch “LA Stories with Giselle Fernandez” at 9 p.m. every Monday on Spectrum News 1.