Ogilvy hires Edelman’s Maria O'Keeffe as global chief people officer

O'Keeffe spent the last 25 years at Edelman, where she served as chief talent officer of the U.S., Canada and Latin America and most recently as global CTO of practices, sectors and clients.

O'Keefe has spent the last 25 years at Edelman.

NEW YORK: Ogilvy has appointed Edelman’s Maria O'Keeffe as global chief people officer. 

O'Keeffe will spearhead all of Ogilvy's global experience, strategy and operations for its employees, including employee attraction and retention, performance management, leadership development and learning. 

O'Keeffe is replacing London-based global chief people officer Jag Dhanji, who is set to leave the role at the end of March. O’Keeffe will be based in Chicago and report to global CEO Andy Main and global president Devika Bulchandani. 

O'Keeffe's appointment is part of Main's plans of focusing on developing Ogilvy's workforce while "attracting and retaining the best and most diverse talent in the industry."

"I am always impressed when a company puts people and culture at the center of their growth strategy, and that is exactly what Ogilvy has done," O'Keeffe said. "I’ve watched the progressive hires, the exciting wins and the creative awards of the past year and knew I wanted to be a part of that momentum. I’m honored and excited to be joining Ogilvy and can’t wait to contribute to the continued success."

O'Keefe has spent the last 25 years at Edelman, where she served as chief talent officer of the U.S., Canada and Latin America and most recently as global chief talent officer of practices, sectors and clients. 

O'Keeffe worked directly with Edelman’s executive committee to create and implement programs that facilitated talent retention and organizational development. She also enhanced paid-time-off policies, increased parental leave, improved career development processes and created a candidate assessment program that formalized talent acquisition processes to drive progress towards the company's DE&I goals.

O’Keefe’s former Edelman colleague Marie-Claire Barker joined Ogilvy’s WPP sister agency GroupM this year as global chief people officer.