ONDCP Ad Director to Step Down

WASHINGTON, D.C. Alan Levitt, director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy’s $150 million anti-drug media campaign, is stepping down, Levitt confirmed.

“I am looking at retirement after the first of the year,” Levitt said, declining to elaborate further.

Levitt will remain in his post at least through October, sources said. An ONDCP representative declined comment. No successor has been named. He has directed the ONDCP program since it launched in 1998.

During his tenure, Levitt has weathered a number of battles including struggles with Congress which wanted to place restrictions on the campaign to ensure accountability and effectiveness following a year of controversy and scandal surrounding the campaign’s lead agency, WPP Group’s Ogilvy & Mather; a power struggle between ONDCP and the Partnership for a Drug-Free America over creative direction; and findings that the campaign has not significantly changed teen behavior.