MD&A Names Otero-Smart President

Mendoza, Dillon & Asociados, one of the largest Hispanic agencies on the West Coast, has promoted Ingrid Otero-Smart to the post of president and COO.
Otero-Smart, 41, who began her career with the Newport Beach, Calif., agency in 1987, follows in the footsteps of Robert Howells and Dick Dillon.
Howells, 52, who has served as president and CEO for 10 years, keeps the latter title while taking on the new role of chairman. He said he expects Otero-Smart to “provide a platform for growth.”
Specifically, Otero-Smart, formerly executive vice president and director of client services, will take a lead role in the Sears, Roebuck and Co., Mission Foods and Nabisco accounts, among others.
Howells said the promotion of Otero-Smart doesn’t lessen his own role. “She will be running all the departments in the agency, but like any COO or CEO, I’ll have responsibilities, too,” he said.
Howells, who has worked at the company for about 20 years, wouldn’t say much about his new duties, but sources said he will likely look for ways to expand the client list in black and Asian markets.
Otero-Smart–a native of Puerto Rico–said she looks forward to serving as the agency’s first woman and Latina president.
“Personally, it means something,” she said. “I think in our market, it’s nice to see a woman taking up a position like this.”
With more than $90 million in billings, MD&A ranks third in billings among U.S. Hispanic ad agencies, behind Y&R’s New York-based Bravo Group and Bromley in San Antonio, Texas. K