Arnold Realigns Its Volkswagen Team: Castle Replaces Rogers; Hickey Promoted

BOSTON-Jon Castle, a 10-year veteran of Arnold Communications, has taken over brand management duties on the agency’s flagship Volkswagen of America account.
Castle succeeds George Rogers, who left the Boston-based shop in May for Mullen in Wenham, Mass., where he oversees account services on the General Motors’ Certified Used Vehicles account.
“Since day one, I was George’s right-hand man” on the Volkswagen business. “I’m assuming all of his responsibilities,” Castle said.
Castle retains the title of vice president and management supervisor. He becomes the point person for all brand development on the account and is the liaison between various agency departments and executives at the client’s U.S. headquarters in Auburn Hills, Mich.
For now, Castle is shuttling between Massachusetts and Michigan, working on ads for the redesigned Passat and for the relaunch of the Beetle early next year, he said.
Karen Driscoll, executive vice president and account director, continues to oversee Volkswagen’s retail marketing activities at Arnold, directing field promotions and working with dealer groups.
Both Driscoll and Castle report to Arnold partners Fran Kelly and Tom Lawson.
Barbara Hickey, who has been promoted from account supervisor to vice president and management supervisor of integrated marketing, reports to both Castle and Driscoll. Arnold has about 15 overall account staffers assigned to Volkswagen.
The shop hopes to move forward in the long term with the Castle, Driscoll, Hickey triumvirate heading the Volkswagen team, Kelly said. “It was always our intention to move everybody on the team up” when Rogers left, he added.
However, Kelly would not rule out bringing in a high-level executive to oversee the account if the right person was found. “We’re always looking for anybody else who could make us stronger.”
Overall Volkswagen sales in the United States and Canada are up about 10 percent this year compared to midyear 1996, which puts Volkswagen on the way to its projected 10 percent sales increase for 1997, Castle said.