After only six months on the job, Mary Baglivo, J. Walter Thompson USA's chief marketing officer, is already on her way up. Ms. Baglivo has been tapped as the agency's first North American chief operating officer.
"It's not so much a brand new job as racheting up the work I'm already doing as the chief marketing officer," Ms. Baglivo said. "It's an evolution to really market the agency on a North American basis. . . . It's kind of building on what was the original marketing officer concept."
It has not been determined if her previous post will be filled. She will also continue to handle client duties as global business director on the agency's Warner-Lambert Co. business.
As chief operating officer, Ms. Baglivo, 42, will be the point person for North American activities, including new business, talent recruitment, integrated marketing and ac- quisitions.
She will work closely with J. Walter Thompson Co. worldwide executives CEO Chris Jones, Chairman Charlotte Beers and President Peter Schweitzer.
In a memorandum to be released to the JWT staff this week, Mr. Jones said, "Mary's charge will be to leverage the strengths of the JWT brand from coast to coast. . . . While we remain enthusiastic about our unique geographic spread of separate offices in North America, we also see the need to address an increasing number of issues on a regular basis."
It has not been determined what kind of staff Ms. Baglivo will assemble, but there will "probably be some group put together for North American initiatives," Ms. Baglivo said.
One thing she hopes to accomplish is to link the offices more closely to share time, talent and creative resources. The agency already crafts "all-star teams" of employees across the country to advise certain clients and that may expand.
Another important task on Ms. Baglivo's mind is to promote and grow JWT's considerable depth in the digital, direct and database arenas. She will also represent JWT in the development of WPP Group's shared media-buying company, MindShare. Before moving to JWT and New York, Ms. Baglivo spent 18 years at Euro RSCG Tatham, Chicago. She became president in '96 and CEO in '98.
Copyright March 2000, Crain Communications Inc.