In a bid to prepare itself adequately for the future, Wieden+Kennedy has made changes to its organizational structure, including a new global stakeholder group, and a new leadership team to oversee the agency’s emerging markets. The agency will mark 35 years in business next April.
The reorganization was led by Global President Dave Luhr and Global Chief Creative Officer Colleen DeCourcy. They have added 15 new members to the current nine-person partner group, which they said has been renamed to more accurately represent the leaders' role in the future of the agency. This leadership team will now be called Wieden+Kennedy Stakeholders.
“Our current nine-person partner group is based on a model we’ve outgrown," stated Luhr, who, together with DeCourcy, oversees the global W+K network, which includes eight offices located in Amsterdam, Delhi, London, New York, Portland, Sao Paulo, Shanghai, and Tokyo. "That group doesn’t reflect the breadth of perspective and skills we want to see in the next generation of leaders, and the next, and the next. Given the size and complexity of the agency, we need more decision-makers representing more offices, more disciplines and different voices. Our leadership needs to be a bigger and better reflection of the agency we have become.”
“We are focused on making work that is culturally relevant and influential, and that lives across more places and channels," says DeCourcy. "We are rethinking what 'work' is, embarking on unexpected collaborations, and seeking to grow in interesting, smart ways. This group is charged with pushing us further down these roads and others we haven’t even considered."
The W+K stakeholder group includes (new members in bold):
Dan Wieden, Founder, Global Chairman
Dave Luhr, Global President
Colleen DeCourcy, Global Chief Creative Officer
Claudia Valderrama, Chief Financial Officer
Kim Papworth, Executive Creative Director of Emerging Markets
Karrelle Dixon, Director of Emerging Markets
Neil Christie, Managing Director, W+K London
Tony Davidson, Executive Creative Director, W+K London
Iain Tait, Executive Creative Director, W+K London
Paul Colman, Chief Strategy Officer, W+K London
Helen Andrews, Deputy Managing Director, W+K London
Neal Arthur, Managing Director, W+K New York
Karl Lieberman, Executive Creative Director, W+K New York
Susan Hoffman, Executive Creative Director, W+K Portland
Tom Blessington, Managing Director, W+K Portland
Mark Fitzloff, Executive Creative Director, W+K Portland
Joe Staples, Executive Creative Director, W+K Portland
David Terry, Director of Strategic Planning, W+K Portland
Alberto Ponte, Global Creative Director on Nike, W+K Portland
Daniel Sheniak, Global Comms Director on Nike, W+K Portland
Jessica Monsey, Group Account Director/Director of Publishing, W+K Portland
Andre Gustavo, Managing Director, W+K Sao Paulo
Eric Quennoy, Executive Creative Director, W+K Amsterdam
Mark Bernath, Executive Creative Director, W+K Amsterdam
The agency also announced that Kim Papworth and Karrelle Dixon have been appointed to oversee the company’s emerging markets, in new roles as Executive Creative Director, Emerging Markets and Managing Director, Emerging Markets, respectively. They will report to Luhr and DeCourcy, and will be based in London while spending time in W+K’s Tokyo, Shanghai and Delhi offices.
Previously, Dixon was the Global Account Director for the agency’s largest (and foundational) account, Nike, based in Portland, OR. Dixon joined W+K London in 2006 as an account manager on Nike and other agency brands.
Papworth was Executive Creative Director for W+K London for 15 years, during which the agency created celebrated campaigns for Nike, Honda and Nokia, amongst others.
Founder and Chairman Dan Wieden stated, “I am so damn proud of this place. We started as a ship of fools, and that, I quite firmly believe is why we have succeeded for almost 35 years. But I really never thought we would be talking about the next 35. The hope is always that the next generation does better than the one before them. I think under the leadership of Dave and Colleen, and this inspiring group of new stakeholders, we just might be onto something."