4As' EVP Mike Donahue received a standing ovation at the opening session of the organization’s Transformation Conference in Austin this morning after the group’s president, Nancy Hill, announced he would be leaving at the end of the month.
Donahue has been in charge of the organization’s strategic partnerships and has also overseen the annual Transformation conference, as well as media services and other industry outreach initiatives.
He was also closely involved in the development of Ad-ID, the advertising identification code.
Before he joined the 4As, Donahue’s career included account management roles at Saatchi & Saatchi and its predecessor agency, Dancer Fitzgerald Sample. He was a member of the Executive Committee of the Board of Directors of both agencies.
A video tribute of Donahue was shown at the opening session, in which a number of peers and colleagues discussed his contributions to the industry. Hill praised his “wealth of knowledge,” which she said has been an invaluable industry source.
Tom Finneran, also an EVP at the organization, said it was fitting that Donahue’s alma mater Villanova was one of the top basketball schools in the country this year. (They made it to the NCAA Tournament, but were eliminated this weekend.) He called them both “class acts.”
Mike is indeed a class act. I've had the privilege of working with him at 4As for 20 years. You won't find a more caring, kinder person than Mike who is a wealth of knowledge. Mike, we'll miss you!!
Mike: I'm giving you a standing ovation now! Thanks for all your help over the years.
Mike, Best of luck. We will miss you
Mike has been a terrific advocate for the marketing community and a wonderful partner to ANA. Our industry is better, thanks to Mike!
Donahue played an important role at the 4As and within the industry - more important than most people realize. He got a lot done and always did it with style and grace. My very best to you Mike, as you move on to the next step in your business life.
Cheers - Jerry
Mike, congratulations on a great career at the 4A's. Sorry I couldn't be at the conference to join in the standing ovation.
I'd say that I'll miss Mike, but I'm certain (and glad) we'll be seeing the indefatigable Mr. Donahue around the industry in another incarnation.
Mike was one of the real pioneers in ad tech, recognizing years ago that data, and clean data, was a critical element in the efficient distribution and reconcilement of ad campaigns.
Mike's been one of my finest industry-friends for the last 18 years -- and we are all better for his tireless passion in leading the impossible rate of change that has happened to our industry. Back to Ts&Cs v1 and v2... Mike helped the agency community stand our ground and fought for marketer and agency protections we all take for granted today. Mike -- I'll miss you in this role and wish you the very best! JA
Hope he can still score in the paint. UNC is gonna need both Mike and his son to make it to the Final Four (congrats Mike)
Congratulations on a long and distinguished career, Mike.