Weber Shandwick has announced a series of creative and strategic planning leadership appointments to continue to drive measurable impact for clients through breakthrough, earned-first creative. The appointments are as follows:
- Tom Beckman has been promoted from global head of creative to global chief creative officer, the agency’s first global CCO role.
- Robyn Adelson becomes chief strategy officer for North America. She was previously EVP, creative and strategy for Canada.
- Jim Paul becomes chief creative officer, Central overseeing creative teams in Chicago, Detroit, Minneapolis and St. Louis.
- Angela Mears becomes executive creative director of the agency’s West region, leading creative teams in Los Angeles, San Francisco and Seattle.
- Vitor Elman, co-founder of Cappuccino, Weber Shandwick’s digital agency based in Brazil, becomes creative lead for Weber Shandwick across Latin America.
“The world has become noisier and more complex, so the ability to ideate and execute flawlessly are increasingly important when it comes to making an impact for our clients,” said Sung Chang, chief impact officer, Weber Shandwick. “The creative vision from Tom and his team as well as Robyn’s skill at integrating strategy and creativity will undoubtedly propel our work and bring tremendous value. I’m confident this group of leaders will continue pushing our agency – and the industry – forward to meet our clients’ needs now and for the future.”
Beckman is one of the industry’s most celebrated and respected creative leaders, driving daring integrated campaigns for global brands and organisations, including Gates Foundation, IKEA and Electrolux. His work has received top honours from Cannes Lions, Eurobest, SABRE Awards and Clio Awards, and he has led and participated in more than a dozen juries for the industry’s most prestigious award shows. He is also a frequent speaker at major international industry events, including Cannes Lions, Eurobest, Spikes Asia, TED, and Ad:tech London.
In his new role, Beckman will continue to set and elevate the standards for Weber Shandwick’s creative work, as well as grow the agency’s community of creative talent. He will also lead Weber Shandwick’s Global Creative Council, a working group of creative leaders across the organisation, and oversee creative across the firm’s ecosystem of agencies.
Deepening Ties Between Strategy & Creative
Adelson is known for driving holistic and integrated programmes with social value and earned at the core. She played a critical role in developing Weber Shandwick Canada’s integration of strategic planning and creative, driving year-over-year growth and producing award-winning work for clients like McDonald’s, Mondelez and Sport Chek. In her new role, she will accelerate strategic planning across all of North America.
“Identifying the right business and cultural contexts to inform creative is a requirement today,” Adelson said. “We’re all working in a new, more complicated, intersectional world, which demands a stronger strategic discipline, and I’m excited to deepen that capability at Weber Shandwick.”
Strengthening Creative Leadership across the Americas
Weber Shandwick is also elevating several senior creative leaders across the agency’s network in North America and Latin America.
Paul, formerly an executive creative director and the lead creative in Chicago, is taking on a new role as chief creative officer, Central, where he will integrate and elevate the creative offering across the Chicago, Detroit, Minneapolis and St Louis offices, ensuring that clients throughout the region have access to the best resources and an array of creative talent. An advertising industry veteran with a deep background in consumer, Paul has led iconic work for a wide range of multinational companies – from Mars to Kellogg’s to Anheuser-Busch.
Similarly, in her role as executive creative director, West, Mears will be focused on bringing unique perspectives and thinking to clients across the agency’s Los Angeles, San Francisco and Seattle offices, as well as growing the company’s roster of diverse creative talent. Formerly a group creative director, Mears has led award-winning campaigns for many top brands, including Airbnb, McDonald’s and VMWare.
Elman, creative vice president and co-founder at Cappuccino, a digital creative agency acquired by Weber Shandwick in 2018, takes on a new role to continually elevate the standard of creative across Weber Shandwick’s operations in Latin America as the agency’s creative lead in the region. Elman has driven innovative campaigns for many of Brazil’s most celebrated brands as well as global brands, such as Coca-Cola, MTV and Danone.
These promotions are part of Weber Shandwick’s broader commitment to developing and expanding its senior creative talent. In February, Ciro Sarmiento, former CCO at multicultural marketing agency Dieste, joined as chief creative officer for New York. Becca Young also joined to lead strategy and creative in Canada. And the agency hired its first North America creative excellence manager, Lisa Graves, who joined in late 2020 to elevate the work and integrate the creative communities across the region.
“Some of the biggest opportunities for brands and organisations today sit at the intersections of business, culture, politics and technology. It’s a complex environment but an exciting time to bring together diverse skillsets to solve bigger problems for clients across our business,” Beckman said. “That is really what we’re investing in. An expert mix of perspectives on problem solving to ensure application of our creative capability across all our service offerings. From sustainability to internal communications to consumer marketing.”
Weber Shandwick has received some of the most prestigious creative awards in the industry in recent years, including 25 Lions at the 2019 Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity and 14 Clios at the 2019 Clio Awards. The agency was named to Ad Age’s Agency A-List in 2020, honoured by Campaign U.S. as PR Agency of the Year in 2020 and topped PRovoke’s Global Creative Index three times in the last five years.