Appointment Ends Monthlong Search

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NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- Publicis Groupe's Optimedia USA today named Mike Drexler as CEO, ending a monthlong search to fill the post.

A veteran media executive, Mr. Drexler, 63, is currently executive vice president of independent shop Mediasmith, New York.

He moves to his new job April 1.

The appointment ends a search that began following the resignations of Gene DeWitt, chairman-CEO, and Steve Soldano, president-chief operating officer. Rich Hamilton, CEO of Zenith Optimedia Group, the Americas, led the executive search.

Optimedia is part of the Zenith Optimedia Group, which is 75% owned by Publicis and 25% by Cordiant Communications Group.

Drexler began his agency career in 1960 at Ogilvy & Mather as a media assistant. He moved up to senior vice president and director of media at Ogilvy before taking a job as worldwide director of media and programming at Doyle Dane Bernbach. From there he went to Bozell as executive vice president and national media director, TN Media as chairman and FCB Worldwide as executive vice president and media director before joining Mediasmith in 2000.

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