Ogilvy Chairman Lazarus Steps Back

Longtime leader assumes emeritus role

After 41 years at Ogilvy & Mather, Shelly Lazarus is calling it a day.

Lazarus, who retained her chairman role after Miles Young became global CEO in January 2009, will now cede that title to Young as well. Effective July 1, she'll simply be known as chairman emeritus.

In a statement, Young described Lazarus as an "exceptional individual, an outstanding leader and an inspirational evangelist for branding." 

Young added that "for 15 years she has guided the agency of David Ogilvy perfectly to the letter and the spirit of the agency."

When parent company WPP Group named Young to succeed Lazarus, she had run the global agency for 12 years. Along the way, she forged deep and lasting relationships with the marketing leaders at global corporations such as IBM and American Express.

Lazarus also is credited with driving collaboration among Ogilvy's different disciplinary units, many of which share the same brands.

Before assuming the CEO role, Young ran Ogilvy's Asia-Pacific region. Like Lazarus, he is a longtime veteran of the agency. He joined what was then Ogilvy & Mather Direct in London in 1983.