So what did I miss? Oh yeah, this. Shit. Oh well, after about a week away from the action, yours truly is back and ready to roll, so what better way to shake the rust off than, you guessed it, reporting about another Grey NY group creative director appointment. The latest to assume to said title is one Michael Collins, the self-proclaimed “creative tsar” who’s been with Grey for over a decade. By our count, Collins is the seventh creative to make GCD at Grey since the agency first adopted the title a month ago. We’re thinking they’ve taken to it. At this point, you know what to expect after the jump, folks, read on.
“You may best know Michael Collins for his blatant disregard for the rules of fashion. You’ve seen his salmon colored suits. You’ve witnessed his all too wide ties, tucked non-discreetly under his velour smoking jacket. You’ve caught a glimpse of his black leather disco boots and platform heels. You’ve perhaps noticed his brown, beige and cream layered getup from the late ’80’s. And if by chance you were lucky enough to miss all of this, you most certainly haven’t missed his thick, black mustache. Nobody has missed that.
But wait. You may best know Michael Collins as the only guy at Grey smart enough to graduate from Stanford.
Either way, Michael Collins is far more than a fashion disaster from an absurdly exclusive college. He’s now a GCD. And a very good one at that. Though he’s been at Grey for a decade, it’s in the past three years Collins has grown into a real creative leader, overseeing a group including Robitussin, Advil Congestion Relief, Preparation H, Thermacare and two German investment banks, Allianz and Allianz Global Investors. He also led and won the Emergen-C pitch last year, and oversees that account as well.
Collins is the kind of guy creative teams love working for, account folks love working with, and clients just plain love. Probably because he loves what he does, and his positive energy wears off on everyone around him. I challenge you to have a meeting with him and not leave feeling better about the work, the business and yourself. Just try. It’s hard.
Collins grew up in Alaska, then after Stanford he moved to San Francisco, where he wrote for Parenting and Adweek. He quickly jumped into advertising and opened a boutique shop of his own. After not getting bought out for millions during the first dot-com boom, he moved to New York City, where he lives with his wife and their two cats in Greenwich Village.
Like so many creative minds at Grey, he has passion projects outside of the business. His book Santa Speaks was published by HarperCollins, and he is an accomplished playwright. His most recent play, For The Love of Damien Hirst, debuted at the Players Club last year. He owns three kilts, and because kilts are not shorts he may very well wear one to the office some day soon. With an ill-fitting salmon sport coat.
Please congratulate Collins on this well-earned promotion when you see him.
He’s hard to miss.