New York—Linda Woolley, named last week as acting president-CEO of the Direct Marketing Association following the resignation of Larry Kimmel, may be in that role for quite a while. Woolley told BtoB there is no official search process in place to seek a permanent operational head for DMA.
Woolley has been DMA's exec VP-Washington operations since 2008, overseeing the association's advocacy and lobbying efforts. She will continue to oversee those duties, commuting between the New York and Washington offices, and will continue to live in Washington, she said.
Woolley declined to speculate on whether her position would be made permanent, but acknowledged that the situation “is different from the last time.” She cited the 2010 resignation of Kimmel's predecessor, John A. Greco, followed by cataloguer Robert Allen serving as “interim” president-CEO for six months until Kimmel ultimately was chosen by a DMA search committee.
“Especially in the beginning, I'll be spending a lot of time in New York,” she said. “If there's testifying required in Washington, obviously I'll have to be there.” She said that legislative advocacy would be DMA's No. 1 task during her tenure.
If Woolley is eventually named permanent CEO-president, it won't be the first time a DMA chief divided time between New York and D.C. Former DMA CEO-President Jonah Gitlitz, who served from 1985 to 1996, lived in Washington and handled both advocacy and operational responsibilities for DMA.