Grey Vancouver parties to celebrate changing of the guard
September 19, 2013 | Eve Lazarus | Comments
A who’s who of Vancouver’s marketing industry gathered at the Rosewood Hotel Georgia Wednesday night to help Tim Johnson usher in his retirement after 27 years as the president and CEO of Grey Vancouver and welcome the new management team of Neil McPhedran, general manager, and Maria Kennedy, managing director, national design director.
McPhedran moved to Toronto from Vancouver over a decade ago to head Tribal DDB. That was followed by stints at Capital C and The Hive, but McPhedran had also set up shop as a social media consultant and the founder of men’s clothing company GreenShag Enterprises.
“I’m loving being back here,” he said. “Grey is in a really fantastic place.”
McPhedran said part of the appeal of his return to the West was the prospect of working with Kennedy again, who was president and creative director at DDB’s Karacters Design Group for more than 10 years before leaving in 2007 to found and run Seed Ideas.
“It’s not about creating a separate Vancouver office, it’s about creating a long hallway with [Grey] Toronto,” said McPhedran. “I think I’m an interesting person to be put into this role; I’m from Vancouver and I understand Vancouver it’s part of my DNA, but also I’ve worked in Toronto for over a decade at a few different places and with a multiplicity of different clients. They are just such different working environments.”
Major clients for Grey Vancouver are BC Ferries, Westminster Savings, BC Mental Health and Translink, which will launch a massive multimedia campaign in mid-October to prepare for the launch of Compass Card, the transit authority’s new smart card.