Saatchi & Saatchi Vet Cliff Atkinson Heads to RPA in Executive Director, Digital Media Role

By Patrick Coffee 

Santa Monica’s RPA, best known for its work on the Honda account, has hired Cliff Atkinson to fill the newly-created role of executive director, digital media.

The new executive will report to RPA’s evp, chief media officer Jim Helberg and lead all media including strategy, social, programmatic, search and more.

Atkinson comes from Saatchi & Saatchi, another car-friendly agency, where he spent 12 years running digital strategy and investment. During his tenure, he was credited with breaking ground in further integrating media and creative—and RPA looks to have him do the same for their shop.

“Cliff’s work in emerging platforms is impressive, and he will be relentless in our pursuit of best-in-class relationships, solutions and game-changing innovation that allows us to see around corners in this complex landscape,” said Helberg, citing his “wealth of experience, knowledge, passion and humanity.”

Before his time with Saatchi, the former sociology major worked at Grey New York, later helping to evolve the interactive media divisions of Deutsch New York and Los Angeles. He has contributed to campaigns for Toyota, P&G, Coors Light and UnitedHealthcare, among others.