A Commercial Success

Ann Fudge takes the helm as the first African American to head a major advertising agency

factories to more strategic businesses may necessitate a different kind of leadership. “Advertising companies are now full-fledged marketing companies that have to compete with other marketing companies. A marketer at the helm makes sense, and in Ann’s case you have one of the most respected marketers in the business. There’s also a lot of overlap in the brands Ann would work with, and has worked with, and those represented by Y&R,” Feuer says.

Fudge, who received a B.A. from Simmons College and an M.B.A. from Harvard University, has been featured in many publications, including BLACK ENTERPRISE, and is recognized as one of the most powerful women in American business. She serves on the board of directors of General Electric, Honeywell International, and Marriott International. She also serves on the board of governors of the Boys and Girls Club of America, and she is a trustee of the Brookings Institution.

Fudge is enthusiastic about her new post, and says she is ready to dig into her new position. “Since my time off, I am so energized. I’m excited about the growth prospects for the company.” Longtime employee Stephanie Kugelman, Y&R’s vice chairman-chief strategic officer, also expresses optimism. “If she’s a great simplifier [as she expressed in her address to employees], that would be great for the company. Her approach of being open and honest is a perfect fit for the Y&R people.”

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