The exodus continues at Publicis’ top PR agency, MSLGroup.
This week, global chief client officer and former president of North America Renee Wilson officially stepped down from her role at the shop to become president of the PR Council, a trade association formerly known as the Council of Public Relations Firms. Last year, Stuart Elliot wrote a not-super-flattering profile of the organization and its rebranding plans for The New York Times, but we know at least a few of its leaders to be good agency people. The org’s chairman is Christopher Graves, who concurrently holds the global chairman title at Ogilvy & Mather’s PR wing after serving as its CEO for five years.
Wilson has held quite a few leadership roles in the PR agency world, spending several years with Hill + Knowlton before moving to MSL. She also served on the creativity jury at Cannes for two years and acted as the president of its PR group in 2014, and she regularly speaks at events like South by Southwest and the United Nations International Women’s Day Conference. Graves calls her “a high-caliber leader who will represent our industry so well across so many fronts.”
In addition to Wilson, we hear that Allan Dib, the agency’s SVP and head of research, insights, planning and analytics for North America, resigned from his position this week. Before joining MSLGroup in 2014, Dib ran research at WPP’s Mediacom and held various leadership positions at German market research company GfK in London and New York. We do not have any details regarding his future plans or the reasons for his resignation, but the dots connect themselves.
For context, MSLGroup was the PR firm behind the Leo Burnett “Like a Girl” campaign for Always. They rightly won lots of awards for scoring blanket coverage in pretty much every media outlet everywhere. (The creative work helped on that front, of course.)
Here’s our November review of other executives who recently left MSL. The list is fairly long, and we hear that there will be more resignations to come as the larger Publicis Groupe goes through its latest radical transformation.
We reached out to parties at MSLGroup today for comment but have yet to receive a response.