Michael Ditzian, the former managing partner of New York law firm Davis & Gilbert who played a major role in shaping the modern ad-industry landscape, died on Sept. 10 after fighting a 20-year battle with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. He was 69.
As an attorney, Ditzian was involved in the formation of Omnicom Group and led its acquisitions of TWBA Worldwide, Chiat/Day, Fleishman-Hillard and Ketchum, among other transactions. As the holding company's legal advisor, he led over 100 significant acquisitions that helped Omnicom evolve into a global player.
Ditzian also served as counsel to many independent marketing companies as well as media firm AlphaMedia.
He joined Davis & Gilbert in 1971, after serving in the U.S. Army in Vietnam. He rose to become head of the corporate group and managing partner of the firm, where he remained until his death.
Until his death, Ditzian remained active and committed to the Lymphoma Research Foundation, serving on its board of directors.
Ditzian grew up in Rockville Centre, Long Island, N.Y., and graduated cum laude from Amherst College. He earned his law degree from Cornell University and his master of laws from New York University.
He is survived by wife of 38 years, Barbara; his children Jaime and Eric; Eric's fiance, Fleur; and his sister Maralyn.
Over 400 people attended Ditzian's funeral, held earlier this month.