Havas Chicago appoints Myra Nussbaum first female CCO

Nikki Laughlin and Myra Nussbaum (photo by Brian Cooper)

Havas Chicago has announced the appointment of Myra Nussbaum as chief creative officer – the first female CCO in Havas’ North American network.

Nussbaum brings more than 15 years’ experience making work that moves at the speed of culture based in the philosophy that creating a strong, simple message has the power to break through the clutter.

She takes the creative helm alongside Havas Chicago president Nikki Laughlin, adding to an executive leadership team in Chicago that’s majority female and becoming the first female CCO within Havas’ North American network.


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“With our focus on operating as strategic business partners to our clients, we need an integrated leadership team that brings its collective superpowers to the table in close collaboration to meet business KPIs—and Myra’s approach to creative takes those objectives into consideration,” said Laughlin, who also oversees Annex Chicago and Annex Experience. “In addition to being one of the most fearless creatives I’ve seen in the industry, focusing on the passion behind a creative idea, Myra always considers the business goals when creating work that’s driven by culture. Known to be an incredible motivator and bring the best work out of others, she’s a great fit, and I know her addition will enhance our creative output.”

Nussbaum comes from Leo Burnett Chicago, where she was executive creative director. Prior to that, she served as SVP, group creative director, at DDB Chicago.

As a culture-obsessed child of MTV and Apple, her creative vision is in step with the zeitgeist of the time. From helping colorblind people see color for the first time, to supporting the biggest product launch in KFC history, Nussbaum’s work has created emotional connections while significantly impacting business for brands such as Mars, Molson Coors, KFC, Kmart, SC Johnson, Dow, Valspar and Ford.

Named one of the top-30 creatives in advertising by Adweek, Nussbaum has been celebrated by the top advertising award shows including Cannes, Clio, D&AD and The One Show. Her creative campaigns have been featured in The New York Times, Forbes, Wired, TODAY and many other media outlets. Part Gen X, part Millennial, she is experienced in almost every platform, believing that a good idea will translate to any medium.

“There’s never been a better time for an idea to catch fire and have a large impact, and I’m thrilled to bring that mindset to Havas Chicago,” said Nussbaum. “Havas has an edge that the other holding companies don’t have. It’s scrappier, braver and more in touch with culture. The symbiotic relationship of media, data and creativity is also very appealing, having never seen it integrate seamlessly at other agencies. I’m most excited to come up with ideas that not only revolutionize the brands we work with but change culture for the better. Our work needs to be unforgettable while creating meaning. If we can accomplish these things, we’ve won. And we’ll have a lot of fun in the process.”


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