J. Walter Thompson Co. today announced that it is eliminating the position of worldwide chief creative officer. Matt Eastwood, who has held that position since July 2014, will leave to “pursue other interests,” according to the agency’s statement.
“We are reimagining the future of the agency,” Tamara Ingram, JWT Worldwide CEO, said in a statement. “This was a structural decision that will allow us to be more agile, leverage our collective global bench strength and encourage the burgeoning diverse ‘maker culture’ growing within J. Walter Thompson. We would like to thank Matt Eastwood for his contributions and wish him continued success in his future endeavors.”
In an internal memo to employees and obtained by Adweek, Ingram expanded: “Creativity remains at the very core of our business, but today it is an even more collaborative process. It is borderless. It is broadly focused. We are increasingly relying on the people who are closest to making and creating the work.”
Ingram said in the memo that JWT’s Worldwide Creative Council “will evolve to better reflect the needs of the agency,” incorporating “a fluid roster of talented individuals with myriad skill sets.”
“I am committed to protecting, supporting and developing the creative community and culture within JWT,” Ingram concluded in the memo. “I am looking forward to sharing more specific information soon. For now, it’s business as usual and we will keep the trains running as we head into Cannes.”
This isn’t the first time JWT has gone without a global CCO.
The position had been vacant from 2009 to 2014. The last global creative chief, Craig Davis, left the agency in 2009.
Prior to joining JWT, Eastwood served as chief creative officer of the New York office of DDB, working on campaigns such as “Yeah, that kind of rich” for the New York Lottery and “Hashtag Killer” for Water is Life.