Dutch Treat: StrawberryFrog Taps ECD

NEW YORK When Michael Folino worked at his first job in advertising as a copywriter at Team One in El Segundo, Calif., a decade ago, he and his co-workers kept a list of phrases they longed to sneak into the shop’s Lexus ads, which at the time epitomized mainstream style and decorum.

“Islamic Jihad” and “homoerotic” made the list, but as far as anyone knows, never graced any Lexus copy.

Folino brings that same sense of humor to his new post as interim ecd in the Amsterdam, the Netherlands, office of independent StrawberryFrog.

“He worked with me when we won the global Heineken business. He’s a very innovate creative thinker and a good leader,” said agency CEO, CCO Scott Goodson. “We wanted someone who has worked on iconic brands such as Nike.”

Folino will lead the shop’s creative team in Holland while the search for a permanent ecd continues.

“We want to make sure we find the right person, and it’s not something that happens in a few minutes,” said Goodson. “He’s someone who fills a lot of what we’re looking for, but he does not have, at the moment, a long-term vision of being in Europe.”

Folino, 42, is the former ecd at Wieden + Kennedy, Portland, Ore. Before that, he was CCO at DDB in Chicago, where he worked on Budweiser.

When Folino starts in mid-June, he will join a shop that is preparing large-scale campaigns for brands such as Barilla pasta, Onitsuka Tiger shoes and Sara Lee coffee.

“These are dynamic campaigns that require someone who can run and chew gum at the same time,” said Goodson, to whom Folino will report.

The father of five boys will move his family (including three nieces) to Amsterdam. He believes the city is a good fit for his style, which has exhibited a European sensibility. “[I’ve] always tried to do European work in the U.S.,” he said. “This is the chance to do European work in Europe.”