For Ken Banks, recently named evp, account management director at Doner, taking a senior account position at the shop was a sort of homecoming.
The 58-year-old Detroit native, most recently CEO of KAB Marketing in Largo, Fla., did a two-year stint at Doner in 1978-79, working as an account supervisor on retail accounts such as May Co. and Wickes Furniture.
In his new post at Doner, Banks will manage the $150 million Circuit City account, which the Southfield, Mich., independent won in June. Connections made during a series of senior marketing jobs following his initial stint at the shop led to his new appointment.
"I know Circuit City's new chief marketing officer [Ernie Speranza] very well, and I happened to have a few conversations with him, and then I happened to have a few conversations with Alan [Kalter, Doner's CEO], and we sort of creatively said, 'Wouldn't it be interesting if I came on and worked on Circuit City?' " said Banks, who reports to Kalter.
The shop's plans for the account are ambitious. "We'll be relaunching the Circuit City brand [this fall], working with them not just on creative but a whole new positioning and branding strategy, as well as direct, in-store graphic design, internal marketing and communications," said Banks. Reporting to him are svp Stacey Kotler and account manager Erica Bixby, as well as an account director to be hired.
Prior to KAB, which consults on brand strategy and marketing for retail, packaged-goods and media companies, Banks had been svp of marketing and branding at Petsmart Stores. Before that, he served for 15 years as vp of marketing at Eckerd Drug Stores, whose agency at the time was Doner.
An avid skier and golfer, Banks comes to his new job well-rested. "I just got back from two weeks in Tuscany, the wine country," he said. "It was beautiful."