BBH NY changes top tier of leadership with chairman Emma Cookson to depart after 20 years

By Gillian West | Social media manager

January 23, 2015 | 3 min read

BBH New York has announced changes to its current senior team which see current chief creative officer, John Patroulis, moving to the newly-created role of creative chairman and executive creative director, Ari Weiss, promoted to chief creative officer.

The changes follow a strong year form BBH New York in which revenue increased over 50 per cent in 2014.

The creative chairman position has been created for Patroulis due to his performance during his four years at the agency which has resulted in creative accolades, new business wins, and business growth. As creative chairman he is responsible for guiding the overall creative vision, leadership and output of BBH New York as well as maintaining an active leadership role on current client work. Patroulis will continue to work across a number of creative accounts and will report to worldwide chief creative officer, Alexandre Gama.

The new role sees Patroulis take on a number of direct reports including the chief creative officer, head of integrated production and technology, BBH’s internal public relations group, and all future creative capability investments. Patroulis said the new role gives him “the opportunity to have an even bigger impact on the way the agency thinks, operates, and makes things”.

Ari Weiss, who has also been with the agency four years, will replace Patroulis as chief creative officer taking responsibility for leading the creative and design departments, including recruitment, and working closely with the planning, account service and production departments.

“I've never worked anywhere as special as BBH and to have the opportunity to lead its creative vision is a real honor,” commented Weiss.

Lafferty, North American chief executive officer of BBH, said the leadership shift had to “come from within” to continue the agency’s momentum.

“John and Ari are two of the most talented creatives in the business, and this shift places creativity even more firmly at the heart of the BBH structure – a move that will offer our clients more versatility than ever,” he remarked.

Patroulis and Weiss will work closely with Lafferty and chief strategy officer Sarah Watson to achieve the agency’s goals with the new roles taking effect as of 1 February.

In addition to the senior management changes BBH has announced that chairman Emma Cookson has decided to leave the agency after 20 years of service.

During her tenure at BBH Cookson has served as global head of strategic planning, chief executive officer of New York and chairman of North America.

Sir Nigel Bogle, founder of BBH, said Cookson “stands as one of the agency's all time most talented and influential planners”.

“We will miss her and wish her well in whatever path she takes next,” he said.

Cookson’s last day will be 20 February 2015.

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Bartle Bogle Hegarty is a Global advertising agency. Founded in 1982 by British ad men John Bartle, Nigel Bogle, and John Hegarty, BBH has offices in London, New York, Singapore, Shanghai, Mumbai, Stockholm and Los Angeles and employs more than 1000 staff worldwide.

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