Up to the Minute: Cundari named chair of CMA

Plus, Weber Shandwick makes ten hires and the EU's General Data Protection Regulation comes into effect.

Hires and promotions

The Canadian Marketing Association has elected Aldo Cundari, chairman and CEO of Cundari Group, as chair of the board of directors. Also joining the board are Leroy Williams, SVP and chief branding officer at Rogers Communications, and Bill Hearn, partner at Fogler, Rubinoff LLP.

Content marketing group Fifth Story has named Gerry Chomniak as VP of brand partnerships. He has previously led marketing and social programs for the NHL, NFL and six Olympic games and done work for clients including Air Canada, Procter & Gamble and Visa. Additional staff changes include the promotion of Tom Symes to SVP of brand partnerships and business development and Jeffrey Caruk to VP of brand partnerships.

The Toronto office of PR firm Weber Shandwick has recently made ten new hires: Alex Satouri (VP of finance), Leanne James (director of human resources), Scott McFadyen (senior art director), Marie-Emmanuelle Khoury and Ekaterina Viatkina (senior managers of client experience), Mary Dunne (director of integrated media), Sarah Zajac (senior manager), Ashley Chu (senior producer), Karl Helou and Leslie Haber (junior associates).

New business

Toronto PR firm Enterprise has been selected as the 2018 AOR for the Peeks Toronto Caribbean Carnival, also known as Caribana, taking place from July 7 to August 12.

Ontario’s travel regulator Travel Industry Council of Ontario (TICO) has picked Tag as its marketing and communications AOR following a six-month competitive search. The three-year assignment includes strategic and communications planning, creative, social media, digital, media and PR. Tag has been tasked with improving overall awareness and understanding of TICO’s services.

Pennant Media Group has added Grace Foods Canada to its client roster. The boutique PR firm based in Toronto will work alongside Ireland + Hall Communications to support the Caribbean food and beverage company. Through media relations, events, cross promotions, influencer relations and partnerships, the agencies will focus on raising awareness of the company’s Coconut Water and Jerk sauces and seasonings through the GTA.

DECK Agency, a Toronto-based marketing, design and PR shop, has announced three new business wins, with assignments from Corby Spirit-owned J.P. Wiser’s Whisky and Foreign Affair Winery, as well as Canadian beauty bar The Ten Spot.

Alpha PR has been made the public relations AOR for production company Stephen Low Distribution. The agency will work alongside The Young Astronauts on the account to support upcoming film-related projects through media relations and PR. With offices in Toronto and Los Angeles, The Young Astronauts will handle digital, marketing, media buying and design.


The European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) comes into effect today. The new rules bring substantial changes to data and privacy laws in the EU. Media in Canada looks at how the new rules are going to impact Canadian media buyers (for subscribers).

After more than a decade of business together, Mindshare has lost HSBC’s global media account (valued at around $400 million) to PHD. But HSBC’s Canadian business will be handled by a separate team within Omnicom, due to a conflict of interest with PHD Canada’s existing client roster (for Media in Canada subscribers).

Janet Callaghan has stepped down as president Canadian Media Director’s Council after more than fifteen years with the organization. She was named president in 2008 (for Media in Canada subscribers).