We've come to the end of another tough year in the media business. Though many general-economy indicators look positive for 2004 as 2003 closes, even the once-unstoppable TV ad marketplace has practically ground to a halt. And anytime you end a year without momentum, it's hard to build it up again.
But the 2003 Media All-Stars generate their own energy as they fight and win battles every day for their clients and their shops.
There's Irwin Gotlieb, who's proven year after year that he's got the staying power to keep his MindShare and Mediaedge:cia agencies on top, with no client desertions and $1 billion in new business. (Gotlieb is also the only repeat winner in this year's lineup, having received Mediaweek's President's Award in 1997.)
Another notable winner this year is Donna Speciale, who was so good at assembling crack national and local television buying teams at MediaCom that she got hired away by rival agency MediaVest just last week. One member of Speciale's team, Anne Elkins, who heads up local TV buying at MediaCom, even got the nod as Spot/Local TV All-Star.
Congratulations to all the winners, and thanks to all the people who took the time to nominate them. —Michael Bürgi