The Martin Agency has named Karen Costello (below) as its new CCO following the departure of agency veteran Joe Alexander last last year amid harassment claims. Costello joined the agency as ECD in mid-2017, leading its Mondelez business. Jerry Hoak has also been promoted to ECD and managing partner.
Costello will work alongside new CEO Kristen Cavallo.
After the unfortunate circumstances of Alexander’s forced departure Martin is making the most of its new female regime with CEO Cavallo saying: “What do Christiane Amanpour (of CNN fame), Hoda Kotb, Robin Wright, Tina Smith, Bozoma Saint John and Karen Costello have in common? They are supremely talented women in their fields, who were there all along, ready to lead. This isn’t overcorrection or an optics play. This is earned. This is preparation. This is opportunity, grabbed.” All we’re missing is Oprah Whinfrey and Joan of Arc.
Costello seems to be keeping her own counsel, possibly wisely.
Martin won’t be the first agency to see big changes this year as more and more male execs find themselves defenestrated for what used to be seen as pretty standard, albeit regrettable, behaviour. There was one in London last week.
Whether or not this changes the nature of the ad business for the better we’ll see.