Cole & Weber United Adds a New Partner

Elizabeth Rowny is a former account chief at TBWA

Cole & Weber United has hired a new fourth partner.

Elizabeth Rowny will assume the role of managing director, overseeing client services. She joins the WPP Group shop after four years at TBWA\Chiat\Day, New York, where she led a key global account: GlaxoSmithKline, which includes anti-smoking brand Nicorette and Aquafresh toothpaste. 

Rowny "brings really great experience working with some of the worlds most iconic brands—from Coca-Cola to some of the Kraft brands and ConAgra brands to Mercedes-Benz and Nestlé and Unilever," said Mike Doherty, president of Cole Weber.

Cole & Weber United's accounts include the International Olympic Committee, Chateu Ste. Michelle Winery, Tree Top, Microsoft and the Washington State Lottery. The agency employs about 60 staffers, all based at its Seattle offices. Rowny, who starts Oct. 1, is moving from New York for the job.

The agency's other three partners are executive creative director John Maxham, director of insights and culture James Mackenzie and Doherty. Britt Peterson, formerly partner and director of growth strategy, has left for Publicis, Seattle. New business responsibilities at Cole & Weber United will be split between Doherty and Rowny.

At TBWA\C\D, Rowny was a worldwide managing director. The GSK business is shared by the shop and its WorldHealth subsidiary, so Rowny worked across both. With her exit, the agency has named two account directors to lead GSK: Louise Fischer in New York and Mike Wortley in London, a TBWA representative said.

Earlier in her career, Rowny was a client services director at SapientNitro. As a member of Nitro prior to its acquisition by technology company Sapient, she led ConAgra accounts like Healthy Choice and Hebrew National.

Rowny's resumé also notes stops at Ogilvy & Mather and PricewaterhouseCoopers, where she was a change management consultant. That combination of consulting and creative agency experience distinguished her from other candidates, said Doherty.

Correction: An earlier version of this article inaccurately stated that Elizabeth Rowny was a founding member of Nitro. Rowny joined Nitro in 2006, and worked there until 2009. Nitro was founded in 2002, and bought by Sapient in 2009.

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