How Arnold Communications will replace managing partner and chief operating officer Dick Emerson has already been decided. Who will fill the role is a different story.
Arnold, New England's largest ad agency, will choose a successor from within, chairman and chief executive officer Ed Eskandarian said last week. "We have too many good people here already" to be bringing in an executive from the outside to fill the position.
When asked about a timetable, Eskandarian said, "There will be no rush, no knee-jerk reaction."
Effective Sept. 1, the 49-year-old Emerson becomes chief operating officer at Toth Brand Imaging in Concord, Mass. "It's an interesting opportunity for Dick," Eskandarian said. "[Founder Michael Toth] needs somebody like him to help on the operations side."
Emerson said he is looking forward to helping take Toth, a fashion-oriented agency that bills around $40 million, "to the next level" [Adweek, Aug. 9].
Eskandarian admitted he was somewhat surprised by Emerson's decision but added: "When you have good people working for you, you should never be surprised."
Emerson is one of two managing partners to leave Arnold since it was sold last year to Snyder Communications in Bethesda, Md. Lynn Rotando, who became chief marketing officer at Ocean Spray Cranberries in Lakeville, Mass., and is now working as a consultant, was the other.
Emerson's role at the Boston shop included running its direct marketing, public relations, Yellow Pages and design divisions as well as overseeing The Hartford and Stop and Shop accounts. He also assembled teams to either assist in new-business pitches or tackle various client issues from an integrated standpoint.
Emerson joined the Boston-based agency eight years ago when it purchased Emerson Lane Fortuna. In '94, when Arnold bought Lawner Reingold Britton & Partners, he assumed operational control over its divisions.