Deutsch Lures Saturn Chief




Riney SVP Will Take Top Slot on Mitsubishi Account
LOS ANGELES–After a national search, Deutsch/LA has hired car veteran Steve Morrissey to oversee its $250 million Mitsubishi Motors Sales of America account.
Morrissey currently heads the Saturn business at Publicis & Hal Riney in San Francisco as senior vice president, account director.
When he starts at Deutsch on March 29, Morrissey will serve as senior vice president, group account director, overseeing all aspects of the Mitsubishi account, including national and regional advertising as well as direct, interactive, collateral and Hispanic efforts. He will report to the Marina del Rey, Calif., office’s executive vice president/general manager, Mike Sheldon, who has handled those duties and will remain on that business.
Morrissey’s 10 years on Saturn were a major reason why he was selected. “He was instrumental in taking a brand from nothing to something very special,” said Sheldon. “Five years from now, we want to have that kind of amazing turnaround for Mitsubishi.”
Besides his car experience, Morrissey was also the right “cultural fit,” said Sheldon, who began the search last summer [Adweek, June 15]. “He’s got that big brain, big heart, thick skin, and two degrees off center that we’re so fond of here.”
Morrissey, who spent more than a decade at Riney, said he was leaving on good terms.
“I’m not leaving because I’m unhappy I’m just going for an opportunity to work on a different piece of business with another great shop. I’m honored Deutsch was interested in me and wanted me for this job.”
Executives at Riney could not be reached, but it was known the shop has not yet named a replacement for Morrissey.
–with Michael McCarthy