D&AD chief exec in suspected exit

Michael Hockney, chief executive of creative foundation D&AD, is understood to have left the organisation.

Michael Hockney, chief executive of creative foundation D&AD, is understood to have left the organisation.

D&AD has failed to deny that Hockney has left. It is unclear what has led to his departure, but one source suggests that he is the victim of a power struggle within the charity.

D&AD is an educational charity, which promotes excellence in creativity. Its Global Awards of yellow and black pencils are amongst the trophies most coveted by advertising creatives and designers.

The departure of Hockney is a blow to the D&AD – which also spends £2m on educational programmes for creatives – in advance of its next Global Awards ceremony in May.

Hockney, a former advertising agency boss, was appointed chief executive of D&AD in 2003. He is credited with bringing flair to the organisation though some are critical that the body has failed to build its profile.

D&AD’s executive committee includes former Whitbread managing director and Saatchi & Saatchi boss Anthony Simonds-Gooding, who is chairman. This year’s president is Wieden & Kennedy joint creative director Tony Davidson.

Hockney worked at BMP – now DDB – in the 70s and 80s and then went on to launch advertising agency BDDH Group in 1987. The agency has since been absorbed into Euro RSCG. He spent a number of years as a consultant, advising organisations such as the British Army.

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