R/GA has announced that Sean Lyons, the company’s US president, will assume the role of Global CEO on January 2, 2019. The appointment, made by R/GA Founder, Executive Chairman, and CEO Bob Greenberg, represents the first time the CEO role will be filled by someone other than the company’s founder.
Greenberg, who founded R/GA in 1977 with his brother Richard, will continue to serve as the company’s executive chairman and has committed to staying active at the company through 2020. During that time, he will support Lyons in evolving and promoting the company’s vision for creating transformation at speed and ensure that every office in the network is able to deliver the innovative work the agency has become famous for. Greenberg will also be a leading voice for R/GA at major industry events and with the media. He will continue to report to Michael Roth, chairman and CEO of R/GA parent company, IPG.
“I could not be happier to have found both a partner and future successor in Sean,” said Greenberg. “In his eleven years with R/GA, Sean has proven himself to be a strong leader who is equal parts technologist, producer, and creative. I have every confidence that he will successfully guide the next generation of talent at R/GA and that together, they will chart a bright future.”
In his role as CEO, Lyons will assume responsibility for running the global R/GA network and guiding the company's mission and vision. He will also lead the global executive team, drive integration of talent and capabilities across offices and regions, and oversee all company financials. Lyons will also work to ensure that R/GA continues to attract and retain world-class talent, grows its global client relationships, and works in collaboration with other Interpublic companies. Lyons will report directly to Michael Roth.
“I am thrilled for the opportunity to lead one of the most creative and innovative companies out there,” said Lyons. “R/GA is a special place. We are built to continuously evolve and filled with an incredibly talented staff around the globe. I thank Bob for his trust and confidence in me and with the leadership team we have in place I know we will continue to help our clients transform and thrive.
R/GA has also announced that company veterans Barry Wacksman and Stephen Plumlee have both been elevated to vice chairmen. Plumlee, who has been with the company for over 20 years will continue to serve as the global COO and managing partner of R/GA Ventures. Wacksman, who has also been with the company for 20 years will continue in his role as global chief strategy officer. Both will be responsible for advising Lyons and contributing to the strategic direction and growth of R/GA.
“Bob is an icon. The work he and his team have done at R/GA has helped to define the future of advertising. Bob has pointed us to a place where we don’t just tell stories, we invent new businesses. Under his leadership, R/GA created some of the world’s most awarded and innovative work, and assembled a leadership team that’s the envy of the industry. Which is why we have someone as talented as Sean ready to lead this company, partnering with Stephen and Barry to ensure R/GA continues to set the highest bar possible,” added Michael Roth.