Gareth Kay Leaves Goodby

By Kiran Aditham 

After spending four-and-a-half years at Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, Gareth Kay has parted ways with the agency. Kay initially joined Goodby from the now-defunct Modernista!  in summer 2009 as director of digital strategy, eventually moving up a year later to associate partner/director of brand strategy to finally his most recent role as chief strategy officer at the San Francisco-based agency. Kay has informed us that yesterday was his last day at GS&P, and though he won’t reveal specifics on his next venture (as it’s in “stealth mode”), here’s a note that Goodby managing partner Derek Robson sent to staff last month that should give you perhaps a little idea:

“It’s with a heavy heart that I have to announce that Gareth Kay has decided to leave the agency.  He is off to start a new company that focuses on the stuff that he is personally most passionate about and which is not part of the advertising agency world.  He’ll be leaving us later this month.

Gareth joined GS&P in 2009 as the Director of Digital Strategy and from the very start; he challenged the agency to think beyond the traditional definitions of advertising.


In September 2011, he was promoted to Chief Strategy Officer and since then he has helped evolve the Strategy discipline here at the agency as well as the day-to-day running of the department. Under his leadership, the agency continued it’s impressive streak of Effie award wins – 51 Effie awards for our work for 35 different clients over the past 15 years.

Beyond all the good work that Gareth has done for our clients and within the agency he has also become one of the most well respected thought leaders in the business, speaking at events around the world.  He has been a tireless advocate for the agency for the past four years.

We thank him, we will miss him, and we wish him well in his new endeavor.

We will not be replacing the Chief Strategy Officer position.  Our strategy leadership is in the capable hands of [Head of Brand Strategy] Andy Grayson, [Director of Communication Strategy] Christine Chen and [Group Research and Analytics Director] Margaret Coles.


Along with his six-year stint at Modernista!, where he last served as head of planning, Kay also held planning positions at Lowe and TBWA during his career.