McCann/A&L Taps Creative Chief

Sweitzer to ‘Re-Establish’ Microsoft Brand
SAN FRANCISCO–McCann-Erickson/A&L’s newly merged office has appointed Steve Sweitzer to its top creative post.
Sweitzer, who starts this week as executive creative director, had been an interim group creative director at Fallon McElligott, New York, since last fall. Before that, he was co-executive creative director at Publicis & Hal Riney, San Francisco working on
General Motors’ EV1 car account, among others. He also helped Foote, Cone & Belding in its failed defense of the Levi’s account. “Steve has tremendous creative credentials and people skills,” said Nick Bishop, president of McCann/A&L here.
Sweitzer will work closely with Jonathan Cranin, evp, executive creative director of McCann-Erickson North America, who was instrumental in landing the estimated $230 million consolidated U.S. ad account of Microsoft this summer.
McCann’s duties include launching the software giant’s Windows 2000 software as part of a major national branding effort due in the fourth quarter. McCann/A&L is working closely on the campaign with Cranin and McCann’s New York office.
“Steve and I will work to build the Microsoft brand, which needs refinement, and re-establish it in the Internet Age,” said Cranin.
“I think we have the opportunity to bring humanity to the brand, and give it greater dimension,” said Sweitzer.
In addition to Sweitzer, McCann/A&L named Michael McLaren as evp, client services director on Microsoft. McLaren had been executive group director on IBM’s global ad business at Ogilvy & Mather, New York.