mcgarrybowen New York names Matt Ian CCO


Twice Emmy-nominated Ian joins
mb’s New York flagship
office from Droga5

Let’s just say, mcgarrybowen ain’t playing around. Akin to the Lakers signing LeBron James, the agency with offices in Chicago, New York and San Francisco announced that advertising’s LeBron, Matt Ian, has been named Chief Creative Officer of the flagship New York office. He will will lead creative for mb’s New York clients including Subway, United Airlines, Verizon, Crayola, Chevron, Northrop Grumman, and more.

Ned Crowley, U.S. Chief Creative Officer, made the announcement yesterday. “We looked long and hard and when we met Matt we knew we found someone who represented the future—a new chapter of creative leadership for our New York flagship. Matt has an insane body of work and deep creative experience from some of the best creative agencies around. He understands how to bring together people around a brave new vision and make the work better. He is going to be a great partner and energy force as we continue to lean into our new creative momentum here at the agency.”

Ian had been with Droga5 since 2015. As Executive Creative Director at the creative shop, he worked with top brands like The Nature’s Bounty Company, Quilted Northern, and Sprint, and landed many new business wins including Pizza Hut and IHOP (which most recently saw success with their burger launch, “IHOb”).

Prior to Droga, he spent time at shops that some of us only dream of working at. He was the ECD creative lead at TBWA\Chiat\Day, where he was responsible a streak of new business wins, including Travelers Insurance, Thompson Reuters, Kenwood Wines, NBCU, and H&M. And before returning to New York for TBWA, Ian worked at CP+B Boulder and Deutsch LA.

At Deutsch LA, Ian was EVP, Co-Creative lead on Volkswagen, overseeing all North America work (brand advertising, retail advertising, collateral, digital, and experiential). While at Crispin, Porter + Bogusky, he served as creative director on the Microsoft Windows business.

ALSO READ: mcgarrybowen spot for Hidden Valley Ranch is a BFD

Before heading out West, Ian spent the majority of his career at BBH, NY. First as copywriter, then Creative Director, on iconic brands like Axe, Levis, Smirnoff Raw Tea (The Original Tea Partay), Vitamin Water, ALL laundry detergent, Sony Ericsson, Rolling Stone Magazine, Lipton, Johnny Walker,, and Sprite.

The new CCO has earned top honors from every major industry award show along with having his work discussed, critiqued, and celebrated in the press by The New York Times, USA Today, Fortune, The Chicago Tribune, Fast Company, The Wall Street Journal, The Boston Herald, CNN, Good Morning America, The Today Show, MSNBC, as well as all the trade publications. Matt’s work on VW was also nominated for two Emmys.

Ian said, “mcgarrybowen’s got positive momentum; you can see it in the new hires and in the new business wins. Most creative opportunities at this level are more about shoring up or rebuilding; but this job is about complementing and building on what’s already working so well,” adding “My BBH and Droga5 partner, Amee Shah, told me a great Tina Fey quote: ‘don’t hire anyone you wouldn’t want to run into in the hallway at 3:00 AM.’ That’s also a pretty good rule when you’re thinking about joining a team.”

Crowley went on to describe a renewed commitment to raising the bar on creativity by bringing in top talent like Ian and to engage everyone in the agency. Those efforts are paying off in the press with accolades on new work from Amex to Subway, United to Marriott and Verizon. They are also driving an unprecedented new business streak and one of the most award-winning years for mcgarrybowen on record. The creative resurgence is also attracting fresh new talent from other top creative shops, and people like Julie Scelzo who recently joined from Pandora to take on the role of Global ECD on American Express.”

From left to right, Matt Ian, Chief Creative Officer; Angela Johnson, President, and Conner Huber, Chief Strategy Officer

Ian will join mcgarrybowen New York leadership team headed by President Angela Johnson, who joined earlier this year from WPP where she led the global Kimberly-Clark business, and Conner Huber, Chief Strategy Officer who came to mcgarrybowen a little more than year ago, having worked at top creative shops from Goodby, Wieden, and CP+B.

Consider some of us on the Reel360 team to be “jelly.” We wish Ian the best of luck.