Wieden Vet Duncan Joins BE&P

Barkley Evergreen & Partners has completed a revamp of its top-management team begun two years ago, hiring Knox Duncan from Wieden + Kennedy to run its media department.

As chief media officer, Duncan, 41, will oversee all of BE&P’s media operations, including its buying subsidiary Run SpotRun and its interactive media operations. He had been media director at Wieden in Portland, Ore.

“He’s much more grounded in the total media package,” said Scott Aylward, CEO of the Kansas City, Mo., shop. “He has more of an interactive bent than what we’ve previously had.”

BE&P has roughly $330 million in billings, handling media duties for clients such as Dollar Rent-A-Car, Paramount Parks and Sonic Drive-Ins. It formerly shared media duties with StarLink on Payless ShoeSource, but that business is in review and BE&P is not participating.

Though he is arriving at a time when many clients are looking to large media companies to handle their business, Duncan said he feels there is still a place for a midsized agency’s media department.

“For me, the excitement lies in the connection of the message and the work,” he said. “Our promise of potential has less to do with what your size is than what you do with what you have.”

Aylward echoed those sentiments, putting forth the argument that his agency’s smaller department allows for more senior representation on clients’ accounts.

“I don’t believe that every client is intent on buying media by the pound,” Aylward said. “If bigger were always better, they wouldn’t be having reviews, they’d just be asking us to send in our billing numbers.”

Duncan’s experience working for blue-chip clients such as Nike and Microsoft was viewed as an asset, as was his experience working for a creatively driven agency like Wieden, Aylward said.

“Given the vision of where we want [our] brand to go creatively, we wanted someone from a creative culture,” Aylward said. “As we add to our management team, we’re looking for people who bring creativity to all departments.”

Duncan’s appointment rounds out a management team that includes chief marketing officer Ginny Shiver decker, who was hired earlier this year, and president and chief creative officer Brian Brooker, who joined the shop from GSD&M in 2000.

The agency’s buying subsidiary, RunSpotRun, was created last June in an effort to attract midsized clients that need local expertise.