Hill Holliday promotes Chris Wallrapp to president

Chris Wallrapp named president at Hill Holliday

Hill Holliday has its named its first president since 2013 and has also hired its first COO. Agency veteran Chris Wallrapp has been named president and Leslee Kiley has been announced as chief operating officer by Karen Kaplan, chairman and CEO of Hill Holliday.

“In the last 18 months we’ve developed some remarkable momentum,” said Kaplan, “but we’re not about to take our foot off the gas. Which is why it’s the perfect time to double down on our leadership strength, so I can focus on critical industry issues and where marketing’s headed ten years from now.”

Wallrapp, who had been chief growth officer, joined the agency in 2010 and led the teams behind the agency’s 100% new business win rate over the last year, including Planet Fitness, Tempur Sealy International and a leading global retailer. He also helped support Hill Holliday’s pursuit of organic growth from existing healthcare clients and Bank of America, which moved its consumer banking business to Hill Holliday from WPP in early 2016. Wallrapp has held strategic roles at GSD&M, Fallon, Carmichael Lynch and Modernista!, where he first teamed up with Hill Holliday’s chief creative officer, Lance Jensen.

Kiley is a 20-plus year veteran of Hill Holliday and was most recently head of account management. In addition to leading the Bank of America account, Kiley was responsible for implementing successful account leadership that has resulted in Hill Holliday’s multiple client relationships of a decade or more. She’s been the management force behind many highly-regarded, award-winning creative campaigns for Bank of America.

“These changes allow us to further our key goals of growth, efficiency and innovation by adding two critical roles and filling them with proven senior executives who appreciate our history and share our vision for the future,” said Kaplan. “Having been on the front lines with our clients who are fighting the daily share battle, Chris is a respected leader who understands this business and the lightning pace it demands.

“Leslee has been a valued colleague and trusted advisor for years, and no one understands better how an agency operates to successfully deliver work that drives our clients’ business. She is a skilled manager and an inspirational force at the agency. She’s led the growth of some of our biggest client relationships.”

Account Director Kerry Benson, who joined the agency in 2006 and has managed such relationships as Liberty Mutual and LG Appliances, will succeed Kiley as managing director of account management.

Hill Holliday has not had a president since Kaplan became chairman and CEO in 2013, and the COO title is new. According to Wallrapp, “the past year has been a turning point for the agency. We’ve gone seven for seven in new business pitches and were named a Strong Performer in Forrester’s 2016 Q4 Lead Agency Wave report. With these changes, Leslee and I can keep a laser focus on sustaining that success while Karen continues to build our national reputation and strategic roadmap for growth.”

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