Cindy Gallop, advertising consultant and former chair of BBH New York, has caused quite a storm on Twitter following a Business Insider piece that quotes Saatchi & Saatchi chairman Kevin Roberts as saying that she “has problems of her own making” regarding her ongoing quest to advocate for and promote diversity within the advertising industry.
In the article, Roberts tells Business Insider that he believes the gender debate is over, despite the fact that in 2014 only 11 percent of creative directors were female, according to a survey from the 3% Conference. He also said that he thinks Gallop makes a lot of stuff up “to create a profile, and to take applause” and said that he thinks many women are not interested in leadership roles.
When asked what she thought of Roberts’ comments, Gallop responded by stating that “The best response to that is to throw it open to the industry, and ask the women and men of the ad industry, all around the world, to tweet at @krconnect to let him know whether they think I'm 'making it all up’.”
While Business Insider pointed out that 65 percent of Saatchi & Saatchi’s employees are female, and that its parent company Publicis Groupe has a 50/50 gender split, many people took to Twitter call out Roberts for his comments:
— Daniel Schutzsmith (@schutzsmith) July 29, 2016
— Stephanie Holland (@Sheconomy) July 29, 2016
— Jonathan Mildenhall (@Mildenhall) July 29, 2016
— SH (@scribblehark) July 29, 2016
I hate to give ignorance like this any oxygen but I see this ALL the time. It has to stop. WE ARE JUST AS AMBITIOUS. https://t.co/CHmFaQE23U
— Clare O'Connor (@Clare_OC) July 29, 2016
At the time of writing neither the agency or Roberts had followed up to comment on the report.