LRXD has hired Gary Gonya as chief strategy officer. He will work on all current clients - which include Danone, Zespri Kiwifruit, Jenny Craig, Honey Smoked Fish Co., Hubert’s Lemonade, International Delight, Macaroni Grill, Mad Greens and others - as well as new business.
Gonya recently joined LRXD as the department leader and aims to grow the agency’s strategy discipline. He reports to CEO Kelly Reedy and is a member of LRXD’s management team.
“Gary is a great strategy leader, but it was equally important that he be able to provide a path to developing a true strategy department and a discipline that gets integrated throughout all elements of the agency,” said Kelly Reedy. “With his guidance, we are strategically building out this important department.”
In his more that 25 years of planning and strategy experience, Gonya has served stints at several top firms, including Doner, Leo Burnett, Deutsch and CP+B. He also co-founded Peace Innovations Team, a company that created an innovative methodology designed to improve sustainable peace engagements. The past two years, he split his time between the strategy departments of Sid Lee’s Los Angeles and Toronto offices. In addition to leading teams at each location as the shop’s head of Strategy, Gonya worked with key clients such as The North Face (on the FUTURELIGHT global product launch) and Mitsubishi Motors (on global automobile launches).
Gonya was attracted to LRXD’s health and happiness focus, which he believes fits an emerging consumer need. “Work that promotes better products that enhance people’s lives and are better for society and the planet is deeply meaningful for me,” he said. And as the agency has grown and forged deeper multiyear relationships with clients, he believes a strategy-based approach will be essential for leading their messaging. “My vision is to apply a strategic approach to the agency’s strengths - its AOR relationships, design discipline and media offering - and integrate them in a way that brings value to the client and elevates the work we do.”