Modernista! has promoted Matt Howell to president and Alex Hesz to managing director. Howell has worked on brands from Sony to Prada to Nike and Ericsson. He arrived at Modernista! as chief interactive officer, where his first act was to dissolve the interactive-practice group, integrating interactive thinking into the heart of the agency's offering. Howell had previously been a group director at R/GA. Hesz joined Modernista! as client services director in June 2010. He was previously at DDB London, where he ran the Nestle UK business and the Guardian newspaper's digital account. While at BBH, Hesz oversaw brands including British Airways and Johnnie Walker, and worked on two campaigns recognized with Cannes Gold Lion awards. He is the author of "Guilt Trip," a book about brands and corporate responsibility that resulted in a cover feature he authored for Marketing Week. Howell and Hesz will sit alongside Sebastian Gard, Director of Social Media, and creative directors Davi Liu and Xavier Teo as part of a flat management team. Founders/ECDs Lance Jense and Gary Koepke will continue to lead the agency's creative.
Digitas' brand content unit The Third Act has hired Paul Kontonis, Eric Korsh and Teal Newland as VPs, group directors, content strategy and development. Kontonis was previously senior VP-branded entertainment of MATTER, an Edelman entertainment and sports-marketing company. Additionally, he co-founded For Your Imagination (2007), a web video studio that developed, produced and promoted original web series. Korsh joins The Third Act after working as chief operating officer of Scout Productions ("Queer Eye for the Straight Guy, Big Ideas for a Small Planet, How to Get the Guy"), GM/EP of Emmy-winning series "Sox Appeal," and producing commercial and web content across the U.S. Newland was formerly commercial director for 60Frames Entertainment, an independent content studio developing original programming for brand integration and digital distribution, where she worked with a portfolio of content creators including Joel & Ethan Coen, John and Scott Burns. Before joining 60Frames, she spent six years with Microsoft in global sales management across the company's European and US offices. Her last role, based in London, was head of multinational sales.
U.S. directing duo Sniper Twins, aka Barry Flanagan and Dax Martinez-Vargas, have signed with Independent for commercial representation. Sniper Twins' first video, Computer Friend, snagged over 700,000 views on Youtube, and more recently they created a music video for Hershey's, "Chocolate Shoppe." The pair write, sing and star in their own videos. Since 2004 they have been working at MTV as creative directors, where they write and shoot promos, such as the recent slow-motion comedy spot for MTV sitcom "The Hard Times of RJ Berger."
Spike DDB has tapped Dabo Ch? as executive creative director and Catherine Nunez as director of account services. Ch? comes to Spike DDB from the UniWorld Group, where he was the general creative director on Ford and, before that, worked on brands including Mountain Dew, Pepsi, Ford and Burger King. Prior to joining UniWorld, he worked at FCB Chicago with clients including Coors Light, Blockbuster Music, Gatorade and Sun Drop Soda. Nunez joins Spike DDB from Latinvox, where she was an account director. During her career at agencies D'Arcy, Lowe, Global Hue and Latinvox, she worked on clients including Verizon Wireless, Citigroup, Procter and Gamble, Volkswagen, Audi, Unilever and Fifth Third Bank. Chevrolet has just named Spike DDB its African-American agency of record.
Saville Productions has inked a deal with visual-effects and 3-D director Alessandro Pacciani for exclusive representation in commercials in the U.S market. Mr. Pacciani's work has been featured in commercials for international brands such as Audi, Subaru, Nike, Arena, Google and Universal Music. He was a finalist at the Hollywood Awards in 2005 and was honored with the UNESCO Award for his shorts.
Minneapolis-based agency Mono has hired new team members as it continues to expand. New hires include creative Bill Lee, who joins from Carmichael Lynch and previously worked at Wieden & Kennedy and One and All; creative Kevin Dunleavy, who comes to the shop from The Martin Agency, where he wrote headlines for The Onion and national TV spots for Geico; account director Laura Hoey, who most recently lead the client-services team at Schematic; and project leader Kelly Roberts, who comes to Mono from Carmichael Lynch, where past clients included Subaru, Northwest Airlines and Harley-Davidson.