Baldwin, McKinney Part Ways

NEW YORK David Baldwin, ecd at Havas’ McKinney in Durham, N.C., said he has left the agency to form a new company. Today was his last day. Replacing him is Jonathan Cude, who was promoted from svp, group creative director.

Today was Baldwin’s last day. Replacing him is Jonathan Cude, who was promoted from group creative director.

Details about Baldwin’s new venture remain scant. “I have an idea that I’m trying to do. I want to form a new kind of company,” he said, declining to elaborate further.

“David saw this as a time to try new opportunities,” said McKinney chairman and CEO Brad Brinegar. “A decade on the job is a long time.”

Baldwin, a copywriter by trade, was ecd at McKinney for 10 years. In that time the agency did work for companies such as Audi, Sony Bravia and Polaris. The campaign for Audi, “Art of the Heist”, was an integrated game-like affair that centered on tracking down who had stolen the new Audi A3.

Before McKinney, Baldwin was creative head and partner at Leonard/Monahan, Providence, R.I. He was also lead guitarist for Pants!, McKinney’s agency band that won Fortune‘s Battle of the Corporate Bands in 2005.

Cude, also a copywriter, has been at McKinney for about three years, after a stint at Wieden + Kennedy, Portland, Ore., working on Nike and Diet Coke. While this is his first ecd position, the company said it has been grooming him for it. “We’ve always known Jonathan wanted to be an ecd, so we have helped develop him over the past few years. He’s a known quantity and he’s a big talent,” said Brinegar. “I can’t think of anyone else who would be better for the job”

While at McKinney Cude has worked on Audi, Sony Bravia, Virgin Mobile USA and Coldwell Banker, among others. As ecd he will oversee all brands at McKinney. Over the next few months work for clients such as Virgin Mobile USA and Coldwell Banker is expected to debut.

Cude, who will oversee a creative department of between 30 and 40 people and report directly to Brinegar, doesn’t have a snappy creative maxim. Instead, “it’s about getting the right message in front of the right people at the right time,” he said. “What we want to do is to be successful and make emotional connections with consumers for our clients.”

Baldwin, who hopes to remain in North Carolina for his new venture, is reflective of his time at McKinney. “If I have a legacy at McKinney, it’s taking it from a traditional agency based on print and turning it into an integrated player,” he said.