Cannes Lions Health names pharma and health judges for all-virtual event

Flags flying outside Cannes Lions 2019
The judges will evaluate work from 2020 and 2021, as year's event was cancelled because of the COVID-19 pandemic.(Beth Snyder Bulik)

The Cannes Lions Health juries are set for the festival's first-ever virtual show. The final lineup comprises a diverse group of international experts who will evaluate two years of pharma and health advertising campaigns.

Now called Cannes Lions Live, the advertising creativity event is planned for June 21 to June 25, with judges awarding work from both 2020 and 2021 after last year’s event was canceled. 

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Leading the pharma jury is Anne de Schweinitz, global managing director for healthcare at FleishmanHillard. She is one of 16 female jury presidents for the 2021 event, making women the majority (57%) of lead judges and 51% of the judges sitting on juries—both firsts for the festival.

De Schweinitz will preside over nine judges named from around the world:

  • Brett O'Connor, executive creative director at VCCP Health, UK
  • Jeremy Bird, managing director and chief creative officer at Havas Life Bird & Schulte, Germany
  • Wendy Chan, executive creative director at McCann Health, China
  • Wendy Turner, executive creative director at Ogilvy Health, Canada
  • Brian Lefkowitz, chief creative officer at Digitas Health, USA
  • Carolyn Paul, health chair at Edelman for EMEA
  • Tim Hawkey, chief creative officer at Area 23 in the U.S.
  • Regina Moura Rocha, communications and digital director at Roche Pharma Brazil
  • Parixit Bhattacharya, managing partner of creative at TBWA\India

Tom Richards, global chief creative officer of 21GRAMS, will lead the health and wellness judging panel, with judges hailing from the U.S., U.K., Spain, India and France.

Cannes show organizers initially planned a limited capacity in-person event, but rising COVID-19 infection rates in France and slower vaccine rollouts forced the event online.

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For de Schweinitz, it’s important to keep the Lions going this year whether in-person or online.

“I think we all need a dose of inspiration in our work, in what we're bringing to clients and what other companies are doing,” she said in an interview with Fierce Pharma earlier this year.

The juries for the full creativity event—which includes consumer, digital, design, strategy and effectiveness awards—features the “highest-ever representation from global brands, platforms, entertainment and technology companies," according to a press release.

“It’s hugely exciting to welcome this formidable lineup of diverse experts, to unite across time zones and backgrounds, representing the full scale of our industry," Simon Cook, managing director of the Lions, said. “Each year, our juries grow more diverse, which is part of our commitment to appoint outstanding talent from right across the breadth of our global community.”