Magnet Global Network Names Ogilvy, MRY Vet as First CEO

By Erik Oster 

Magnet Global Network, a global network of 40 independent advertising agencies, including Pittsburgh’s Brunner (who you may remember for their 84 Lumber Super Bowl ad that was “banned” from the big game), Cleveland’s Marcus Thomas and Jacksonville’s St. John & Partners, has named Melissa A. Lentz as its first CEO.

Lentz will take over management of Magnet Global Network from Cheri Gmiter, who is retiring after serving as executive director for 13 years. She will be tasked with driving strategy for the network, aid in worldwide recruitment, promote the network and advance educational programming, reporting to Magnet Global Network chairman and Brunner president Scott Morgan.

“Melissa is tremendously well-suited to help take Magnet into a fast-paced and ever-evolving future,” outgoing Magnet chairman and Marcus Thomas chief idea officer Joanne Kim said in a statement. “She has a wealth of experience in change management, business expansion, strategic planning, digital program development, and team building with large agencies and brands around the world.”


“The mission of Magnet and energy of its members reminds me why I joined the industry. The changes agencies currently face have challenged the industry’s identity and agencies’ relationships with clients and one other,” Lentz added. “Magnet represents an antidote to this madness. The network has the potential to attract and unify the world’s next generation of independent agency owners across all capabilities, categories and audience verticals. I’m very excited by what the future holds for us.”

Lentz formed a New York-based management consulting firm specializing in organizational change management and growth planning for agencies, brands and media companies called M. Hatter Consulting in 2014, which she will continue to manage. Before M. Hatter Consulting, Lentz spent over four and a half years at MRY, most recently serving as executive director, global client services and operations and managing director of MRY West. She joined MRY from Tribal DDB, where she spent a year as management supervisor. Prior to that she spent over four years at Ogilvy, serving as an account executive, account supervisor on the global Amex account and then marketing manager for Six Flags Theme Parks.