Newcastle native inspires PEMCO’s newest Northwest Profile

August 29, 2014

By Christina Corrales-Toy

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PEMCO Insurance introduced audiences to Sandals & Socks Guy, Goat Renter Guy and First Snowflake Freakout Lady through its offbeat advertising campaign highlighting Northwest Profiles.

Now, you can add Nothing Between Me and My Tan Man to the list of quirky Northwest characters, thanks to inspiration from Newcastle native Alex Bell.

Bell, a 2009 Liberty High School graduate, won a PEMCO video contest in 2012, as the company sought new profiles for its “We’re A Lot Like You. A Little Different.” advertising campaign.

He and a team of fellow University of Southern California film school students created a 30-second video poking fun at Northwesterners who leave the sunscreen at home in the hopes of soaking up the sun on their way to a natural tan. But the result is often more sunburn than tan, as the video illustrated.

“For better or for worse, it’s just one of those things you see — it’s so Northwest to be able to tell who spent the weekend outdoors,” Bell said in a news release.

Bell and his group made up of USC classmates Austin Thompson, Edd Benda and Ron Hill, got $5,000 for the contest win.

“I think I can speak for all of us when I say the whole ‘poor, starving artist’ thing has some truth to it,” Bell told the Newcastle News in 2012. “So, it’s nice to be able to have some money to spend toward future endeavors.”

PEMCO hadn’t done anything with the winning submission until the company unveiled it as one of its newest Northwest Profiles in July 2014.

While a student at Liberty, Bell had already caught the filmmaking bug and went on to produce video highlights of the Patriots’ sports teams and a video for the school administration, titled, “A Day in the Life at Liberty.”

Bell, who grew up in Newcastle, also won a Newcastle Chamber of Commerce Diamond Award for his community service work in 2007.

See all of PEMCO’s recognizable Northwest Profiles at

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