BBDO New York vet Susan Credle, who worked her way up from junior copywriter to VP/executive creative director on AT&T and M&Ms, now gets to run her own show as Leo Burnett USA chief creative officer.
"I wasn't looking for a new job," Credle says of the move. "My career at BBDO was very fulfilling to say the least. [Leo Worldwide CCO] Mark Tutssel asked me if I wanted to have coffee, which turned into dinner, which turned into an exciting opportunity. It was not an easy decision. It was not a difficult decision. It was a very thoughtful decision."
"Susan possesses a rare and incredible ability to bring out the best in people—and lead big blue chip clients to great creative," says Tutssel. "She has a brilliant creative mind, powerful business acumen and people love to work for her. There is no role more important to our future success, and for all these reasons, we chose Susan."
Credle spent nearly 25 years at BBDO and is credited for helping to give the once lifeless M&M characters their personality. Since then, she's gone on to lead creative teams in continuing the candy legacy and on award-winning work for AT&T (after steering advertising on the company's rebranding to and unbranding from Cingular).
"BBDO has been an amazing place to learn the business of advertising," Credle says. "I have been inspired and taught by very talented people over the years. And I have been fortunate to work with fantastic clients who have supported me and the creative product. I'm looking forward to taking these past two decades with me to Chicago and seeing what we can accomplish together."
Credle replaces former CCO John Condon, who left Burnett earlier this year. She will oversee creative at both Leo Burnett and ARC USA.
Check out Credle's thoughts on brand longevity--and cocktail parties--when she appeared at our Creatives roundtable:
A Credle classic: