McKinney Launches Health & Wellness Practice

By Kyle O'Brien 

Creative and media agency McKinney has launched a new practice, McKinney Health, to combine creative, data-driven strategy with health expertise. To lead the practice, the agency tapped Michael McNamara, former president of Havas Life New York.

McKinney Health will serve new health, wellness and life sciences clients, while also supporting clients across all of McKinney’s verticals, including food and beverage, CPG, tech, retail and more.

McNamara will lead McKinney Health as managing director. He spent the last seven years as president of Havas Life New York, most recently leading the launch of Pfizer’s Covid-19 vaccine and Covid-19 treatment Paxlovid. He has served clients ranging from high-science brands to wellness brands, like All Free & Clear laundry detergent, to tech brands like the first Bluetooth-enabled inhaler for asthma.

“We wanted to create a modern offering, combining our culture and social-first creative approach with deep expertise in the health and wellness category. Michael not only has one of the best resumes in healthcare marketing, but he sees the future of health and wellness marketing the same way that we do,” said Joe Maglio, CEO, McKinney in a statement. “When clients come to McKinney they will receive award winning brand strategy and creative thinking, with access to industry veterans who have been working in health for decades.”

McKinney Health will be completely integrated within McKinney.

“After being in the health and wellness space for so long, I’ve seen that there can be a disconnect on the marketing side that makes health and wellness options less approachable and accessible for some consumers,” said McNamara in a statement. “McKinney has a stellar reputation strategically and creatively. It is an ideal company to launch this new practice. McKinney has a nimble, entrepreneurial spirit that is needed for this type of integrated practice to succeed.”

McKinney Health will be comprised of top talent across all McKinney offices—Durham, New York, Dallas and Los Angeles—and McNamara will be based in the New York office. As part of the Cheil Worldwide network, McKinney Health will also have access to health and wellness expertise around the world to deliver against client needs on a global scale. McKinney Health has already signed clients in wellness, health and life sciences. In addition, health and wellness advertising veteran Darcy McCarthy has been hired as group client director to help build the practice—and McKinney Health is planning significant hires throughout 2022.