Moxie Interactive Founder Steps Down

Kris Zangoria Moxie Interactive co-founder Kris Zagoria announced her resignation as CEO on Wednesday. Joel Lunenfeld, presently Moxie's chief innovation officer, is taking Zagoria's place, effective immediately.

Zagoria helped found the Atlanta-based marketing agency in 2000, and it was subsequently acquired by Publicis' Zenith Media in 2006.

"He's been with the agency since 2001, and has been absolutely critical to Moxie's success," Zagoria said of Lunenfeld.

As for her next move, Zagoria said somewhat generally: "I am thrilled to be able to explore new creative avenues, spend more time with my family, and apply what I have learned at Moxie in my new endeavors to come."

Zagoria's exit comes less than a month after Sarah Fay unexpectedly left her post as CEO of Aegis Media North America. Zagoria, however, said that while the industry could use more female leadership, she had her own unique reasons for moving on.

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"I'm a really good marketer, and I'd like to get back to doing that," she said. "I'm looking for the opportunity to be really, really creative in an environment where anything's possible."

Presently made up of some 300 employees, Moxie's capabilities include communications planning, media planning and buying, search marketing, branded entertainment, digital advertising, ECRM, experiential and sponsorship services and campaign management.

As head of the agency, Lunenfeld's first order of business is industry outreach, and "earning the respect of all of our clients."

Particular areas of interest for Lunenfeld include emerging and social media, conversational monitoring and analysis, as well as "participant planning," which attempts to go a step further than traditional brand planning.

Moxie has recently undergone several key executive changes. Late last year, for one, former Studiocom exec Russell Kowalski joined the company as chief financial officer.

Also late last year, one time Carat EVP Paul Santello came on as SVP, group communications director; Brian Mathena, previously a vice president at Carat, joined as vice president, group media director; while former SVP at KTV Digital Media Sara Francis signed on as vice president, group account director.

The trio was brought on to develop and execute campaigns for key Moxie client 20th Century Fox.

Other clients include Verizon, Coca-Cola, Nestle, Garnier, Maybelline New York, 20th Century Fox and The Home Depot.

Zagoria will continue to provide guidance to Moxie in a consulting role.

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