New York-based creative agency SS+K announced today that it has named Feh Tarty as its new chief creative officer.
The news comes as parent company M&C Saatchi Worldwide moves to expand its North American footprint with SS+K playing a leading role.
“For 25 years, we’ve lived at the intersection of cause and commerce, creativity and mission,” said SS+K partners and co-founders Rob Shepardson and Lenny Stern in a statement. “We were looking for a leader to take this idea into the future—build on it, keep it current, make it better. And when we met Feh, we knew instantly that he was who we were looking for.”
Stern and Shepardson have also recently taken on co-chairman positions at M&C Saatchi in addition to their roles as co-CEOs of SS+K.
Feh, who was born in Liberia and moved to the United States at age seven, comes to SS+K after holding creative director roles at the London offices of Wieden + Kennedy and Mother and, more recently, New York’s SYPartners. He previously worked at DDB and Goodby, Silverstein & Partners.
“I feel drawn to the soul and spirit of SS+K. They are purpose-driven with the intention of having both a positive social and business impact, the kind of work I love tackling creatively,” Tarty said. “We have an important job ahead of us, and the fact that we are perfectly aligned is very inspiring.”
SS+K was founded by political veterans 25 years ago this month and went on to work on both of Barack Obama’s presidential campaigns. The agency specializes in purpose-driven campaigns for clients including Starbucks, HBO, Wells Fargo, Samsung and the NCAA, for which it recently created an inclusion-themed PSA.
Tarty succeeds Bobby Hershfield, who joined The Community as vp, executive creative director in January after leaving SS+K late last year along with former president and partner Brad Kay. SS+K does not plan to name another president at this time.
The larger, London-based M&C Saatchi group made multiple attempts to establish a New York presence before buying a stake in SS+K in 2014. According to Stern, the group now looks to combine the services of its various area agencies—including M&C Saatchi Mobile, M&C Saatchi PR, strategy agency Clear and digital shop Lida—to give clients a more comprehensive offering.
“There’s an opportunity … to organize those entities in a way, when appropriate for clients looking for an integrated offering, that is fast, nimble, entrepreneurial and unconventional,” Stern told Adweek. “As co-chairs of M&C Saatchi Group, myself and Rob have been asked to help in that effort.”
Stern clarified that running SS+K will remain his top priority, adding, “Helping brands and organizations drive and manage change is more relevant than ever, which is why we’re so excited about Feh coming.”