Arnold Vet Smith Joins Swardlick

Those who worked with Rod Smith during his 14 years at Arnold say the creative staff at Swardlick Marketing Group in Portland, Maine, where Smith has taken over as ecd, can expect a few long nights.

“He has a Type A personality,” said Joe Mahoney, associate creative director at Havas’ Arnold in Boston, where he was Smith’s partner. “He’s a bit of a perfectionist. He’s willing to push himself and others.”

Smith, 46, was named vice president and executive creative director at the independent shop earlier this month after a year-long search to replace George Hughes, who retired a year ago. Smith oversees 20 creatives and reports to agency president David Swardlick.

Smith will be asked to use his experience with large, national accounts to raise the agency’s profile, said Swardlick, whose clients include L.L. Bean, the Maine Office of Tourism and White Rock Distilleries. “Rod was the clear choice for us as someone who is both a strong talent, but also a manager and a person who relates well to clients,” Swardlick said.

Smith, a native of Sherborn, Mass., who started out as an art director, arrives at Swardlick after a year as creative director at Boston boutique DiBona, Bornstein & Random. “I was looking for a midsized agency [with potential] for more national growth,” he said.

At Arnold, where Smith was associate creative director from 1997-2001, he worked on the Fleet, EMC and Talbots accounts. Among his best-known work is a TV campaign for data-storage company EMC that introduced the “EMC Orb” with special effects and the tagline, “Where information lives.”

Smith also worked at Arnold from 1984-94, with a two-year stop at Hill, Holliday, Connors, Cosmopulos in between.