Publicis' Laura Desmond to Take Six-Month Sabbatical

Agency Cites 'Family Health Issue' For Chief Revenue Officer's Leave

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Publicis Groupe's Laura Desmond is taking a six-month sabbatical starting July 1, the company announced this afternoon.

Laura Desmond
Laura Desmond Credit: Courtesy Publicis

Ms. Desmond is taking the sabbatical "in order for her to focus her full attention on a significant family health issue," and plans to return Jan. 1, 2017, the company said.

The executive, who had served as global CEO of Starcom Mediavest Group and its individual media agency brands, moved into a new chief revenue officer role as part of a larger holding company reorganization late last year.

In the role, she's been tasked with overseeing new teams of chief client officers across agencies, and she's responsible for the group's growth through "new business and future developments," Publicis said when it announced the changes.

At the time, the company announced that the media agency networks, including SMG, would come under the leadership of Steve King. Mr. King was elevated from CEO of SMG sibling Zenith Optimedia to CEO of Publicis Media.

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