MM Awards

Movers & Shakers: Facebook, Visual IQ, Pinterest, Havas Chicago and 22squared

Tim Maytom

The mobile marketing industry is ever-changing, and that applies to the people as much as the technology. Movers & Shakers is a regular feature following the hottest hires in the industry, so you can keep track of who’s joined which company, and that they’re doing there.


(Left to right) Rachel Whetstone, Theresa Colarusso, Meredith Guerriero, Jonathan Alferness, Karen Goodman, Brandon Murphy 

Facebook Hires Uber’s Former PR Chief

Rachel Whetstone, the former top public relations executive at Uber is joining Facebook to serve as its vice president of communications for Instagram, WhatsApp and Messenger. Whetstone stepped down as head of public policy and communications at Uber in April following the wave of scandals that rocked the firm.

Whetstone has served as a public relations guru for some of the UK’s most powerful Conservative politicians, having be appointed as chief of staff to Michael Howard in 2003 when he became the leader of the Conservative party. While at Uber, she oversaw the firm’s reaction to a class action lawsuit from Uber drivers who were seeking to be classified as employees, as well as the company’s unpermitted rollout of autonomous vehicles in California.

“It’s a real privilege to be joining the Facebook family,” said Whetstone. “Products like WhatsApp have become an important part of my life – making it so much easier to stay in touch with my own family and friends.”

“We are thrilled Rachel will be joining us,” said Caryn Marooney, vice-president of global communications at Facebook. “She brings unique insight and leadership to an already world-class team. We’re excited to work with and learn from Rachel as we manage some of the world’s most interesting communications opportunities.”

Theresa Colarusso Joins Visual IQ as SVP for Customer Success

Marketing intelligence software firm Visual IQ has appointed Theresa Colarusso, former director of global client success at IBM, as its new senior vice president of customer success, where she will lead programmes to ensure the successful implementation of the company’s platform and drive customer satisfaction.

While at IBM, Colarusso was responsible for launching a global client success initiative for the firm’s newly formed Analytics Platform Solutions division, and unveiled a Client Success dashboard to provide a view into the health of existing clients. Prior to her time at IBM, Colarusso worked at software provider Unica Corporation and recruitment SaaS firm VirtualEdge Corporate.

“Since the company’s founding, Visual IQ has delivered the most innovative performance management solutions for marketers and advertisers, and it is well positioned to continue experiencing tremendous growth due to the addition of audience attribute data to its platform,” said Colarusso. “I’m thrilled to be joining such a dynamic team and organisation that is revolutionising the industry, and look forward to continuing to build on the company’s legacy of success and support its marketing intelligence vision.”

Pinterest Grabs Two Long-time Google Executives for Advertising and Targeting

Jon Alferness and Meredith Guerriero, two former Google executives, are moving to Pinterest to help the social blogging platform build out its advertising team. Their appointment follows Jon Kaplan, another former Google exec, joining Pinterest as global head of partnerships back in February 2016.

Alferness, former vice president of product management for Google’s shopping and travel products, has been named as head of ad products at Pinterest, where he will lead product organisation and help develop and roll out new ad products. Alferness is a 13-year veteran of Google, where he held numerous rolls in search ads, mobile display and within the AdMod network.

Guerriero will be serving as head of partnerships for the East region and head of the company’s New York office. She joins from Facebook, where she was director of the health, grocery and politics ad verticals since 2015, but previously spent 10 years at Google, working in search, mobile and programmatic ad products.

Havas Chicago Names New Group Creative Director

Karen Goodman, formerly of Under Armour, has come aboard Havas Chicago as the agency’s new group creative director. Goodman will work on the firm’s Hefty and Reynolds accounts, which have both had recent successes partnering with WWE’s John Cena and the Chicago Cubs’ Anthony Rizzo respectively for campaigns.

At Under Armour, Goodman was part of the Global Concepts and Strategy group, working on creative, strategic and marketing for the firm and defining the sports brands social strategy. She also helped to create the Under Armour Fast Physical service, which provides consumers with a snapshot of their health.

“Karen is one of the most elite creative women in the industry,” said Jason Peterson, chairman and chief creative officer at Havas Creative US. “She’s a triple threat, bringing to Havas client and agency experience, exceptional creative thinking and an awesome attitude. What is most exciting about her is that she’s a non-traditional thinker – a true maker who fits into my belief that all creatives should be and can be true creators.”

22squared Promotes Brandon Murphy to President

Brandon Murphy, current chief client officer at Atlanta-based agency 22squared, is being promoted to president as Richard Ward, the current president, moves on to become chairman and CEO at the firm. Murphy and Ward helped to relaunch the firm together in 2007.

Murphy began working at the agency 12 years ago as director of planning at its Tampa office, and while working for the firm has focused on developing and improving media, analytics and account management practices for the company. Over the course of the last 10 years, 22quared has tripled in size across clients, employees and revenue.

“In the coming months really my new responsibility is building up our creative capabilities,” said Murphy. “Not that it hasn’t been great for years and years, but I’m going to be elevating it a bit and taking it to the next level. I will focus on making us a very creatively-driven centered enterprise, integrating more technology into creative solutions is really my key focus at least for the first six months or so.”