Hires that make you go hmmm



Joe Jackman will be taking up the post of EVP at Toronto-based Loblaw. He was previously chairman and CCO at Perennial, a Toronto-based retail consulting firm whose clients include Loblaw and Canadian Tire. Joanne Balles is currently president of Perennial. Chairman and founder is Cam Whitworth and Chris Lund is CEO.

Lawyer-turned-retail marketer Stéphane Gonthier has been promoted to the position of SVP Eastern North America at Laval, Que.-based Alimentation Couche-Tard’s chain of Mac’s Convenience stores where he will lead the chain’s expansion. Most recently he was VP operations for Mac’s central Canadian stores – a job title that included marketing – and was responsible for increasing sales 20% in five years.

Toronto-native Nancy Fowler has been promoted to the newly created position of president, worldwide consumer products at DIC Entertainment in California. She is responsible for licensing and merchandising for the well-known children’s entertainment company. Fowler joined the firm in 2002 as SVP of worldwide consumer products and was responsible for the successful global relaunch of the Strawberry Shortcake brand in 2003, which has generated about $700 million in worldwide retail revenues to date.

If you build it, they will come. But more will come if you’ve got a spiffy brand image to go with it. That’s what Fairmont Hotels & Resorts hopes will happen with the creation of the new position of SVP marketing and sales and the hire of industry vet Jeffrey Senior. A U.S. import, Senior will be based at the Toronto HQ. Senior says the Fairmont is planning a marketing push to attract the high-end leisure set. He was previously VP brand management at InterContinental Hotel & Resorts where he led the US$25 million relaunch of the brand in September 2002.


Trying to stop a speeding Taxi? Don’t bother. New business and the January opening of the New York office have resulted in a slew of hires.

Here’s the rundown: AD Sam Cerullo joins from Grey Worldwide as does copywriter Jordan Doucette; copywriters Joseph Bonnici from DDB Vancouver and Irfan Khan from Gee Jeffery & Partners; creative team Jaimes Zentil and Craig McIntosh from BBDO; and newbie Alexis Gropper joins as copywriter after graduating from Humber’s Media Copywriting program.

Jennifer Mete, formally of Leo Burnett, is heading up Taxi broadcast. And Troy McGuinness, from Publicis, becomes an AD. ‘There was simply a need to staff up,’ says CD Zak Mroueh. There are now over 100 staffers, consultants and freelancers in the Toronto office.

He says new business wins will be disclosed soon with more hires and promotions to come.

With the massive Molson account, Toronto-based Zig has been hiring and promoting across the agency. Some of the more senior: Shelley Brown and Christian Mathieu have been promoted to managing directors from co-directors of strategic planning. Stephen Leps, AD, and Aaron Starkman, copywriter, are promoted to ACDs on the Molson account. While at Zig, they’ve worked on the lauded Vim spot as well as Unilever, CMT, lavalife and IKEA.

Toronto’s henderson bas has finally found a replacement for John Finkelstein, now at Grip. Canadian-born Michael Gramlow, who has racked up a lot of experience south of the border, is the new CD. He was executive director and CD at San Francisco’s Organic and CD at Digitas also in San Fran. Most recently he was acting CD at Euro RSCG 4D in Toronto. Gramlow’s past client list includes Daimler Chrysler, GM, Smirnoff, Guinness, Bell Canada, Sprint, CIBC, Home Depot and Sony PlayStation.