Zambezi Bolsters Strategy, Account Teams with Pair of Hires

By Erik Oster 

Los Angeles independent agency Zambezi strengthened its strategy and accounts teams with the appointment of Ryan Richards to the newly-created role of group strategy director and Gordon Gray to the role of account director. 

Richards will be tasked with leading strategic development across clients including Cox Automotive’s Autotrader and Kelley Blue Book brands while supporting the agency’s new business efforts and overseeing innovation projects. He joins Zambezi from BBDO New York, where he has served as planning director since July of 2014, focusing on the agency’s HBO and AT&T accounts. Prior to BBDO, Richards briefly served as brand strategy director for the New York offices of Goodby, Silverstein & Partners. He has also held planner positions at DDB Sydney and George Patterson Y&R. 

Gray joins the agency from David&Goliath, where he has spent the past year serving as account director on the national Kia account for which he oversaw work on the agency’s Super Bowl effort for the Kia Optima. Before joining David&Goliath he spent a little over two years as brand director for 72andSunny, working on the agency’s Tillamook, Target, Busch and Natural Light accounts. That followed nearly two and a half years with JWT London as global account director, leading the Nokia account and a year and a half as account director for The Bank, working on Peroni. 

“Zambezi is a place where the best talent can thrive and work on brands they’re excited about,” said Zambezi founder and CEO Chris Raih. “Bringing on big guns like Ryan and Gordon helps us stretch even further. We welcome them to the team.”