Liz Taylor, until recently FCB Chicago's Chief Creative Officer, is moving to Leo Burnett Worldwide, where she will take on dual roles of chief creative officer and creative lead for the larger Publicis Communications North America.
Taylor will be based in Leo Burnett’s Chicago headquarters and partner with Publicis Groupe Chief Creative Officer Nick Law and Chief Strategy Officer Carla Serrano. The new post is effective July 8.
Her appointment follows the pending departure of Leo Burnett Worldwide Executive Chairman and Global Chief Creative Officer Mark Tutssel, who is retiring in June.
“Obviously Mark is a legend,” Law said. “He performed [the global chief creative officer] role in a way that works for Mark. What I imagine is this will have a similar but different role. Obviously, one of the significant differences is she will be reporting to me. The other thing that I think is important, and it’s what I’ve been doing at Publicis as a creative leader, is you need to sell people on your vision and gain their trust rather than just tell them what to do.”
He continued, “Liz will have her way of leading at Leo, which will be great for her. It won’t be like what Mark did because she hasn’t been there for 34 years. She’s coming in and she’ll be earning people’s trust and showing a vision that’s unique to her.”
Law said the second part of Taylor's position, leading creative for Publicis’ North American region, is reflective of clients increasingly seeking cross-agency solutions, or as the group calls it, “Power of One engagements.”
“These engagements happen more and more,” Law said. “We find that clients need multiple agencies to work together and unless you have leaders [to facilitate those partnerships], it’s hard to coordinate.”
Law said Taylor was chosen because of her strong ties to the Windy City (where she grew up and spent most of her career), but because she is “a very modern creative thinker.” Law admitted he tried poaching Taylor unsuccessfully twice while he was chief creative officer at R/GA, a title he held from 2001 until his departure for Publicis last year.
Taylor says she was enticed by the “Power of One” model and Publicis Groupe Chairman and CEO Arthur Sadoun’s larger vision of incorporating “creativity in everything we do.”
“A lot of other agencies are struggling to put that together,” Taylor said. "The industry is changing, [we should do] anything we can to take the complications out of the day-to-day for clients and give them cross-discipline creative solutions."
Adweek first reported that Taylor was exiting FCB Chicago. In her three-year tenure there, Taylor helped win new clients such as GE, Blue Cross Blue Shield and Kimberly- Clark. Before that, she was a global executive creative director for WPP’s Ogilvy and also held stints at Omnicom’s DDB and WPP’s JWT (now Wunderman Thompson).
During his long tenure at Leo Burnett, Tutssel won more than 600 Cannes Lions, including nine Grand Prix, three Titanium Lions and four Glass Lions.
In January, Leo Burnett Chicago elevated Chief Creative Officer Britt Nolan and Chief Strategy Officer Emma Montgomery to co-presidents. A month earlier, Leo Burnett Chicago won lead creative duties for Wingstop.