TBWA\Media Arts Lab Promotes Brent Anderson to Lead Apple as Chief Creative Officer

By Erik Oster 

TBWA\Media Arts Lab appointed Brent Anderson as its new chief creative officer, the first such change since 2009.

Anderson, who was promoted to CCO at TBWA\Chiat\Day L.A. less than four months ago, will now be tasked with leading creative at the agency’s Apple-dedicated unit, taking over for Duncan Milner. Milner is moving into a role as global creative president, working on unspecified domestic and international accounts as well as on purpose-driven marketing arm MAL\FOR GOOD. TBWA\Chiat\Day L.A. plans to fill Anderson’s position in the coming weeks, with creative chairman Stephen Butler continuing to lead the agency’s efforts on that front.

“Nothing is more important than giving trajectory and growth opportunities to individuals who have earned it through their work, vision and leadership,” TBWA\Worldwide president and CEO Troy Ruhanen said in a statement. “Brent is an exceptional talent, a natural leader, and will drive the kind of disruptive, culture-defining work that is worthy of the world’s most iconic brand.”

Having Duncan at the creative helm of MAL\FOR GOOD is a testament to the importance of this practice within TBWA,” he added. “Duncan will be able to pull from his vast experience to do very important and disruptive work on some of the biggest issues facing the world today.”

Anderson first joined TBWA\Chiat\Day L.A.  back in August of 2005, as a senior art director working with brands including Nissan, Visa, PlayStation and Gatorade. Milner has served as CCO for TBWA\MAL for the past ten years and has been the top creative on Apple since the unit was conceived.

According to various sources, Media Arts Lab and Apple reached agreement on plans to take the client’s marketing efforts in a slightly different direction. We hear that this development is not directly related to Tor Myhren’s moves to make Apple a more open organization since joining from Grey last December. That said, MAL has witnessed a series of high level staffing changes over the past year, most recently parting with its new ECD, chief strategy officer and executive director of integration after less than six months.

Beyond their creative departments, leadership at both organizations will remain unchanged as Erica Hoholick and Erin Riley retain their positions as presidents of Media Arts Lab and TBWA L.A.

The moves present an opportunity to introduce a more connected and open way of working in Los Angeles – which has always been, and continues to be, the cultural and creative engine of the TBWA collective,” said an agency spokesperson. “TBWA\Chiat\Day and TBWA\Media Arts Lab will continue to exist as two cultures, but have started to find cross-campus opportunities to scale skillsets across multiple areas, including data, digital and content, maximizing the potential of a radically open creative collective.”