Nina DiSesa has worked in the quintessential boys clubs of advertising for almost thirty years. In 1994, she became the first woman EVP, Executive Creative Director for McCann Erickson New York, the flagship office of the largest advertising agency in the world. Under her creative leadership, the New York office enjoyed an unprecedented 5-year growth period adding almost $2.5 billion in billings. In 1998, she was made Chairman as well as Chief Creative Officer of McCann New York. She was the first woman and first creative director to be named chairman in the McCann global network.
In 1999, Nina was chosen by Fortune magazine as one of the “50 Most Powerful Women in American Business.” In 2005, she received the Matrix Award, given each year to a select group of women in communication. In 2007, she was inducted into the Hall of Fame for CEBA (Creative Excellence in Business Advertising).
Nina DiSesa: I mean there is always a lot of people who think that advertising is the holding bin for people who really wanted to be authors and painters and filmmakers and stuff like that, but there are awful lot of people who go into the advertising business on the creative side, because they have a passion for advertising and they want to, its an art form in itself, its art form for the masses and they want of reach as many people as they can, its very powerful to have an idea that motivates somebody to think differently about something and not that in a mental way, I mean yeah, I wouldn’t try to have somebody phone over the product that was long for them, but if the matches good, and you can think of an idea that moves somebody that changes behavior that makes a brand more relevant to people then that is very accelerating and there are an awful lot of really good creative people who find that is being that as a great challenge and a great reward and then there is always a few who really want a right books and who want to make filims and they probably don’t last very long in agency business, because it is a tough business and if you don’t really love it, it is hard to get out there every morning and go in and get beaten up and get back in the ring and beaten up, and get back in the ring. So, my first love was advertising and always has been in, I wrote a book, because I thought it was a good thing to do, not because I wanted to have a different career.
Recorded on: 2/29/08