In an internal memo distributed Monday morning, J. Walter Thompson/North America president Bob Jeffrey and New York chief creative officer Mike Campbell announced a reorganization of the shop's New York creative department. In an attempt to correct what Campbell calls "perceived inequities" between the agency's creative and account services departments, nine creatives have been promoted to executive VP-executive creative director. Those receiving promotions include Eric Steinhauser, Jon Krevolin, Richard Sabean, Jeff Watzman, Chris D'Rozario, Ed Evangelista, Larry Silberfein, Alex Wilcox and Michael
Hart. Freelancer David Lowe will also join the agency fulltime as an ECD. The 10 new ECDs have been paired off in five copywriter/art director teams that will oversee specific accounts. Additionally, head of broadcast John Garland has been promoted to EVP-Creative Director of Broadcast and Development.
"From the outside, it's a perception that Thompson is an account shop," Campbell says. "This is a clear, loud statement that the old Thompson has been updated to the way a lot of other agencies are operating." In addition to overseeing accounts, the 11 new EVPs will serve on the agency's executive committee in what the memo describes as "a huge push toward giving our creative leadership an
equal voice at the table."
Campbell, who joined Thompson from BBDO two years ago, notes that the promotions are the first major "reengineering" of the creative department since his arrival. As for the shop's current creative work, Campbell says, "I'd say we're at about 80 percent of where I want us to be."