Two TBWA Staffing Updates

By Patrick Coffee 


Today we learned more about the status of two now-former TBWA executives: TBWA\Chiat\Day ECD Patrick O’Neill has joined a startup and George Nguyen is no longer managing director or chief strategy officer at TBWA\Toronto.

The news about O’Neill, who left the agency back in January in a move that inspired quite a bit of speculation on this very blog, broke yesterday with the announcement that his new position would be CCO at Theranos, a consumer healthcare tech company based in Silicon Valley that focuses on offering testing services outside the lab at its many “testing centers” (some of which have recently appeared in Walgreens).

AdAge notes that Theranos worked with the agency in the past and that founder Elizabeth Holmes calls O’Neill “someone who really understands what it means to engage the individual, empower the individual with information and connect people”. As for why such a company needs a CCO in the first place, she says “the role of creativity is so deep in our organization in every area…It’s inherent in the way we invent new solutions to real and very deep problems that people have.”

Moving north of the border, we only know that Nguyen left his position in June. Uncertainty regarding the status of that job first emerged in February, when our tipsters informed us that Nguyen’s role had changed from managing director to CSO (the MD position disappeared) around the same time that Jay Bertram assumed the role of full-time president, TBWA\Canada.

We have yet to confirm Nguyen’s current status. Updates as they arrive.