Chief creative officer Toni Hess will be leaving her position at the New York offices of Wunderman this month.
Sources close to the matter tell us that Hess decided to depart for personal reasons and that she is not leaving for an alternate position within the agency world. Specifically, she is moving from East Coast to West in order to be closer to her husband, who lives in Los Angeles.
Wunderman has begun the process of searching for a new creative lead for its New York office; it’s not clear at the moment whether the search will be primarily internal or whether the agency will look outside its network (as it did in Hess’s case).
President Jamie Gallo announced Hess’s hire in October 2014 as she left her CCO position at Goodly, a “social good” shop she founded in Brooklyn which counted Bed, Bath & Beyond and GAIN Capital as clients. She previously spent nearly four years with Rosetta as ECD and partner, working on such brands as Nivea, Chase and OfficeMax before departing along with CCO Gary Scheiner (now EVP/ECD at Arnold New York) in a mini-shakeup that came two years after Publicis Groupe acquired the organization.
Prior to joining Rosetta, Hess spent several years as a group creative director at FCB and JWT, working on accounts ranging from Kraft and Kleenex to Diet Coke and Starbucks. She also served as an art director at Publicis Seattle.
This news marks the latest in a series of executive-level changes at Wunderman, which aims to highlight its role within the WPP network moving forward. Today an agency spokesperson declined to comment directly on Hess’s departure, her future plans and its efforts to find her successor.