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People on the move: Hires and departures at General Electric, Getty Images, Volkswagen and more


By Rebecca Stewart | Trends Editor

September 25, 2015 | 6 min read

This week has seen another wave of appointments and departures at brands, media owners and agencies. The Drum has rounded up the key hires below.

General Electric

General Electric has promoted ‎director of global brand marketing Linda Boff to the top role of chief marketing officer.

In addition to her current brand marketing responsibilities, Boff, will lead the company’s digital industrial marketing strategy.

Getty Images

Getty Images has announced former Yahoo senior vice president of EMEA, Dawn Airey as its new chief executive as Jonathan Klein moves to become chairman of the global photography business he co-founded.

Airey left Yahoo after two years of heading up its media business, having previously worked at Channel 5, ITV and BSkyB.


Volkswagen chief executive Martin Winterkorn has resigned amid the emissions scandal which has engulfed the motoring giant.

Winterkorn has denied any wrongdoing in the scandal which saw the car manufacturer admit to installing software to fool emissions tests but said he will leave in “the interests of the company”.

House of Fraser

House of Fraser has hired Julian Burnett as chief information officer, with effect from 5 October 2015.

He will have responsibility for the continued development of technology led solutions across the business and the integration of business needs with IT strategy and delivery.

Julian Burnett has over 25 years’ experience working for consumer facing businesses. He previously held the role of chief technology officer at John Lewis.

Ogilvy & Mather

Ogilvy & Mather has promoted Chris Riley to group chairman of Ogilvy & Mather Singapore just eight months after he was appointed chief operating officer for the group.

Transitioning into the role over the next few months Riley will take the place of Fiona Gordon, who has been in post since 2011 but is now relocating back to the UK for a new role still to be announced.


The Drum has learned that Anil Pillai, chief executive of DigitasLBi UK, Middle East & Africa has left the agency.

Pillia was promoted in March to run the business‘s activities beyond Europe with Michael Islip being named UK chief executive in the process.

He was previously promoted to UK chief executive in 2011 and remained in the role following the finalisation of the agency’s acquisition by Publicis in 2013.

The Leith Agency

The Leith Agency has promoted Troy Farnworth and Phil Evans as its creative directors to lead the agency’s creative offer.

The pair will be the first creative chiefs at the agency since the departure of long-standing creative director Gerry Farrell midway through 2014 with the department having since been run by a number of creative heads, including both Evans and Farnworth.


Havas Media Group has announced the appointment of Sharon Browne, formerly new business director at M&C Saatchi, to the role of chief marketing officer.

Reporting directly to HMG’s group managing directors, Paul Frampton and Pedro Avery, Browne will focus on driving growth across the media and creative businesses by consolidating the sense of shared purpose throughout the group.

R/GA London

R/GA London has tapped Simon Wassef for the role of group strategy director.

With 15 years’ industry experience in Australia and Europe, he joins the agency from Sid Lee Amsterdam, where he held the role of head of strategy.

Wassef will initially be responsible for leading the overarching strategic vision for R/GA London’s entire Nike account, which encompasses all digital brand categories in Western Europe, including Nike Football, Women’s, Running, Sportswear, Basketball and Men’s Athlete Training.


Tony Brown, ex journalist and seasoned PR industry veteran, is to join pan-European PR agency Firefly Communications in September 2015 in a new role as head of content.

Brown will support Firefly’s client base by producing content strategies and initiatives in all forms.

He will also ensure that all content has excellent readability across all channels including online, social media, email marketing, video, print and in-person communications.


Turn, the digital hub for marketers, has appointed Bruce Falck as chief executive officer.

Falck joins Turn from Yahoo’s BrightRoll, where he served as chief operating officer and led all business functions until its acquisition late last year.

He previously spent eight years at Google, where he helped build and grow the company’s digital advertising businesses, including Invite Media and Google Display Network.

Goosebumps Branding

Joanna Jenkins has joined Goosebumps Branding as managing partner.

With over 20 years’ experience in the industry, she has worked for a variety of design houses including Pentagram and Saffron, producing creative for clients such as Logitech, Wonga and United Airlines.

Jenkins will work alongside founder and strategy partner Simon Cotterrell to grow the business.

Want to get your career on the move? Check out The Drum Job page and follow @TheDrumJobs for updates.

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