We Hear: Havas Chicago Parts Ways with Several Top Creatives

By Patrick Coffee 

UPDATE: Another source tells us the GCDs who got let go were Michelle Tucker and Kevin Kelly of Ragu and Dish, respectively.


Details are very limited at the moment, but we hear from multiple sources that Havas Chicago parted ways with several employees in its creative department earlier this week.

Tips we have received indicate that the agency laid off creative leaders including multiple GCDs and that the move touched accounts including but perhaps not limited to Dish Network and Ragu. Sources who appear to have direct knowledge of the matter claim that creative freelancers across all accounts were also let go this week in what looks like a larger effort to streamline operations in Chicago.

Havas won the Dish Network business in 2013 and picked up Ragu last summer after that brand was acquired by conglomerate R&B Foods. Those two pieces of business have recently been led by GCDs Michelle Tucker, John Nussbam, Jon Eckman and Ecole Weinstein, though we cannot confirm which specific creatives were involved in this latest round of layoffs and have yet to receive a response after reaching out directly to a couple of the allegedly affected parties.

This development follows the unrelated departure of Havas New York ECD Jim Hord, who led the Dos Equis account before leaving to join McCann’s m:united last week after helping The Most Interesting Man in the World make his extended exit, stage Mars.

A Havas spokesperson declined to confirm or elaborate on any staffing changes for this post, writing, “We cannot comment on personnel at the agency.”

We can understand this approach. But we do not find it to be particularly productive.