Borghese Steps Down At Mintz & Hoke

Mintz & Hoke’s chief creative officer, Chuck Borghese, is setting aside his full-time role at the independent agency in Avon, Conn., to pursue screenwriting, executives say.

Borghese declined comment. He co-wrote the script for Barstow 2008, a comedy now playing at U.S. film festivals.

Chris Knopf, agency CEO, will take over day-to-day management of the 25-person creative department — a post he held for three years before Borghese’s arrival in January 1999 from Tierney & Partners, Philadelphia. Knopf said he has no plans to replace Borghese, who will remain affiliated with shop by overseeing creative work for clients Ames Stores and Webster bank.

Mintz & Hoke, Connecticut’s largest agency, reported its billings sank 8% to $70 million while revenue dipped 9% to $10 million last year. Last month it was dethroned as lead agency for Mohegan Sun Casino, long a showcase client, by Cliff Freeman and Partners, New York

While retaining the casino’s public relations account and niche advertising programs, the shop recently renewed its contract with Ames for two years, projected annual billings $10-12 million, and acquired the corporate PR account for Applica Consumer Products, leaving it “the same size” it was before the Mohegan Sun defection, Knopf said.