Clare Pickens appointed CEO of Leo Burnett Australia by Publicis Groupe ANZ

Publicis Groupe ANZ appoints Clare Pickens as Leo Burnett Australia CEO

Michael Rebelo: “We are excited to bring such a unique international leader to Australia.”

Publicis Groupe Australia New Zealand has appointed Clare Pickens as the new CEO of Leo Burnett Australia following a global search. Her tenure is slated to commence in April, once she moves to Australia from Amsterdam.

She fills the vacancy left by Emma Montgomery, who left the top spot last year after two years to become CEO of DDB Chicago. Melbourne GM Kate Silver and Sydney GM James Walker-Smith co-lead the agency in the interim, but in January, Silver announced her own departure.

Alongside Silver’s departure, the Chicago-born advertising agency reported the promotion of ECD Andy Fergusson to chief creative officer, Julia Sheehan to Melbourne general manager as Silver’s replacement, and Marijke Spain to creative director.

See also: Leo Burnett Australia announces key leadership changes amid departure of Melbourne GM Kate Silver

Michael Rebelo, CEO of Publicis Groupe ANZ, said of Pickens’ appointment: “Clare is a leader who has worked across multiple markets and client categories, with a progressive view on creativity and what it takes to deliver innovative and effective work. Having spent over ten years at Wieden+Kennedy, she led an international team and managed a range of successful global client relationships.

“Her commercial acumen has been honed leading creative agencies focused on building business through creativity. We are excited to bring such a unique international leader to Australia to lead Leo Burnett.”

Pickens added: “I am deeply excited by the opportunity to join the Leo Burnett team in Australia. Being part of such an established group with a legacy of effective and quality creative work is a great privilege. I’m looking forward to rolling up my sleeves and helping usher in a new phase of progressive partnership and business solutions with our wide client base.

“II’m joining a seasoned team with an ambitious vision and anticipate a wonderful year to come for Leo Burnett, Australia. I hope to bring some of the charm of the Dutch canals to the southern hemisphere, but certainly not the weather.”

The former Wieden+Kennedy executive has worked with brands such as Uber, Nike, Mondelez, and P&G.

See also: Publicis Media Exchange ANZ announces partnership with Ehrenberg-Bass Institute for Marketing Science

Top Image: Clare Pickens

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