CEO Out at Publicis Hawkeye

By Patrick Coffee 

publicis hawkeye logo

Just over a year ago, Publicis Groupe acquired Hawkeye, the Dallas-based digital agency founded by Steve Dapper in 2000. At the time, the purchase was framed as an attempt by Publicis to move deeper into “data analytics, digital strategy, CRM and experiential marketing.”

Today we learned that Sally Kennedy, who served as CEO of Publicis Dallas and subsequently held the same title at Publicis Hawkeye after the acquisition, will be leaving the agency.

Kennedy, who spent three and a half years as president of Cossette New York before moving to Texas in 2011 and proposed the merger to Dapper in the first place, has been pushed out. Dapper will hold both the chairman and chief executive titles effective immediately.

Here’s the statement from Publicis:

“Just over a year ago we announced Publicis Hawkeye, the result of the merger of hawkeye and Publicis Dallas. The agency has been integrating across services, skill-sets and clients, and is now poised for final integration under the one leadership of Steve Dapper, chairman. We wish Sally Kennedy much continued success as she moves on.”

Throughout a more-than-thirty-year career in advertising, Dapper has held leadership positions with several different agencies owned by different holding companies: he was president/CEO of Wunderman/Y&R for more than a decade, served in the same role for Omnicom’s Rapp Collins for nearly as long, and held various executive positions at the Direct Marketing Association before founding Hawkeye and joining the Publicis fold last year.

Kennedy also spent several years with Y&R, serving as SVP/marketing in the agency’s San Francisco office and CMO of the larger North American organization before leaving for Cossette in 2007.

No word on her future plans.