McCann Health adds NY creative chief and global COO

McCann Health is bulking up its executive ranks again. In its latest move building out staff, the healthcare and pharma agency has created a new executive vice president and chief creative officer position at McCann Health New York, hiring its own June Laffey to fill the job.

Her hire comes soon after the agency added another high-level role—global chief operating officer—and hired Linda Szyper, who had been chief commercial officer at specialty pharma Circassia Pharmaceuticals.

Laffey will move to New York from Sydney, Australia, where she has been regional executive creative director for McCann Health Australia and Southeast Asia. She has played a key role in McCann Health’s creative rise and is now the most awarded female creative leader in the history of parent McCann Worldgroup. She will oversee the creative output of the New York office that encompasses McCann HumanCare and McCann Healthcare.

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“To be entrusted to lead the creative teams in two of the highest-performing agencies in our network is truly exciting. What’s more, to be partnering with Leo (Tarkovsky, president of McCann Health NY), who is not only incredibly successful, but smart and driven, is the cherry on the cake—or should I say the salt on the pretzel," Laffey said in an email statement. "For me, New York means new beginnings and a new opportunity to make a difference with ideas that can change, empower and even save lives."

As the new global chief operating officer, Szyper will work closely with McCann Health global CEO John Cahill. McCann attributed her hire to a year of client growth with new assignments and expanded relationships with clients including GlaxoSmithKline, Bayer, Gilead Sciences and Johnson & Johnson's Janssen unit.

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The new titles add to the list of other expanded roles and top-level hires over the past year. Last month, the agency added its first global chief digital officer, Marcus Sigurdsson, and in 2017 created the new role of global chief talent officer. The agency also added two new managing directors last year at the subsidiary it launched in 2016, Consulting at McCann Health.

In the midst of the hiring spree, McCann Health picked up top agency network at Cannes Health in June for the second year in a row. Overall, it won 13 Cannes Health Lions split among 10 different McCann agencies around the world.