Big, Bold Moves in the C-Suite

Business, and the marketing that drives it, is always in flux. Among the many was companies keep pace is by appointing powerhouses to their C-suite. The past few days have been no different, with several key changes at the top of several large organizations.

Getting the most buzz is JCPenney’s announcement of Marvin Ellison as president and CEO-designee effective November 1. Ellison, currently EVP of stores of Home Depot, will also join JCPenney’s board of directors. 

Along with his extensive experience running store operations at Home Depot—he spent the past six years in his current role and prior to that was president of the Northern Division, where he had responsibility for the operations and sales of more than 700 stores across 21 states, and also served as SVP of global logistics—Ellison served in various operational positions at Target for 15 years.

Ellison will officially succeed current CEO Myron E. (Mike) Ullman as CEO on August 1, 2015. At that time, Ullman will become JCPenney’s executive chairman of the board for one year.

The news seems to be good news to investors. According to Forbes, JCPenney’s shares initially increase more than 8% during pre-market trading after the announcement.

Closer to home in terms of marketing are the appointments of Adam Kerj (below) as Chief Creative Officer of J.Walter Thompson New York and Brian Dames as CMO of Harte Hanks.

Kerj’s charge is to spark fresh, industry-changing creative for such clients as Macy’s, Johnson & Johnson, and Royal Caribbean, among others. He will join the agency in early 2015, departing from 360i, where he served as its chief creative officer.  

Harte Hanks’ Dames, a veteran of the company since 2007, takes the marketing reins in the newly created CMO role, where he’ll be responsible for the setting the company’s go-to-market strategy, overseeing brand development, defining marketing strategy, and identifying new markets. Prior to this appointment, Dames held several roles that focused on data- and analytics-based marketing, including EVP of customer solutions. Additionally, he established the Harte Hanks Product Innovation Center, which helps the company leverage technology and partnerships organization-wide. 

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