Janavey, 46, Initiative Controller, Dies

NEW YORK Interpublic Group’s Initiative confirmed today that Harry Janavey, the agency’s senior vice president and worldwide controller, died suddenly last night after suffering a heart attack.

Janavey, who was 46 at the time of his death, was a 24-year ad industry veteran who joined Initiative in 2002. Previously, he was executive vice president and worldwide CFO at McCann Erickson’s Momentum agency. Before that, he was a financial executive at Y&R.

In a memo to staffers on Thursday, Initiative worldwide CEO Alec Gerster praised Janavey as a consumate agency finance professional.

“Over the last nine months he led the crucially important task of applying the higher standards of U.S. accounting procedures to the Initiative business in 58 countries,” Gerster said. “There is no question that this was a large and very important process in the increasingly important area of transparency . . . We will all miss Harry and I know you all will join me in extending our deepest sympathy to his family.”

Janavey was based in New York and is survived by his son and daughter.