180LA Creative Chief William Gelner to Depart Agency

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William Gelner.
William Gelner. Credit: 180LA

180LA's chief creative officer and managing partner, William Gelner, is leaving at the end of the month, the agency said on Tuesday.

Executive Creative Director Eduardo Marques will take over creative leadership for the office while 180 Global President Al Moseley, who oversaw 180 Amsterdam (now 180 Kingsday) for seven years and moved to Los Angeles this past summer, will add global chief creative responsibilities to his current duties.

Gelner helped to open the agency in 2007 when he joined as executive creative director, eventually stepping up to the chief creative post. Under his leadership, 180LA became a creative hot shop, producing award-winning work such as UNICEF's "Unfairy Tales," Mitsubishi's "Live Drive" and Boost Mobile's "Boost Your Voice," which was named Campaign of the Year at the 2017 Ad Age Creativity Awards.

Prior to 180, Gelner had been a group creative director at BBH New York, where he steered notable work for Unilever's Axe. He previously worked at other top creative shops including Cliff Freeman and Fallon.

While 180LA had seen creative highs under his watch, account-wise, it's had a rough year. It lost Miller Lite to DDB in July, just a little over a year after the client moved from Omnicom sibling shop TBWA/Chiat/Day L.A. In May, the agency lost longtime client Mitsubishi, which in September tapped Butler, Shine Stern & Partners as AOR.

Marques, who joined the agency two and a half years ago, was named one of Ad Age's 40 Under 40 and previously worked at Pereira & O'Dell and Ogilvy Brasil.

In his new role, Moseley will be helping to reshape the agency's global strategy as well as spearhead its global growth.

"I've truly enjoyed being at 180LA from the very beginning, helping to architect it, being part of its bones and building the business," Gelner says. "I will miss all my good friends but I'm excited about pursuing this next and important step in my journey."

Gelner says he is entertaining all options for his next stop, including pursuing his dream job of becoming the Soup Nazi of fish tacos.

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