IAA Elects First African World President

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Raheem Akingbolu
A Ghanaian, Joel Nettey, has been elected as the Chairman and World President of the International Advertising Association (IAA), the global compass for marketing and communications.

He is the first African to hold the position. His election was held virtually during the World Board Meeting of the International Advertising Association recently.
Nettey, who is the CEO of Innova DDB, Ghana, has since taken over from Srinivasan Swamy as Chairman and World President.

A statement issued by the global Advertising body also named others that would serve alongside Nettey to include Senior Vice President – Sasan Saeidi, who is Global Client Leader for Nestle at Wunderman Thompson Dubai; Secretary: Carol Schuster, Business Information Advisor at Lafayette 148 New York (New York) and Treasurer: Venanzio Camarra from Milan.

A thoroughbred marketing communications professional, Nettey has over 20 years of experience leading, creating and shaping campaigns for some of the most iconic brands.
Nettey has been Chief Executive of various multinational marketing communications agency affiliates in Ghana including DDB, Saatchi & Saatchi and Publicis.

He also served as the President for the IAA’s chapter in Ghana, the Advertising Association of Ghana. His passion for building relationships and his penchant for achieving extraordinary marketing and communications goals have resulted in the agencies he has led over the years being partners for a myriad of blue-chip companies both multinational and indigenous.

In November 2010, the Network Journal USA (www.tnj.com) recognised his sterling qualities when it named Joel as one of the inaugural 20 honorees from across Africa in its “TNJ 40 under Forty Africa” Awards.

He holds a Master in Business Administration (Marketing) and a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Economics and Psychology degrees from the University of Ghana.

Speaking after the election Nettey outlined his plans for the two years ahead, saying, “We will focus on four key pillars – Diversity & Inclusion, Creativity & Innovation, Regulatory Issues and Education. Together as a team we will take the steps required to ensure that the IAA remains the most recognizable, relevant and impactful marketing and marketing communications association across the globe, while ensuring that we attract and provide opportunities that engage and nourish the next generation of marketing game changers.”

Swamy, the Immediate Past President and the Chairman of Presidents’ Council said, “I have worked with Joel over the last two years when he was Senior Vice President at IAA. His understanding of the issues at IAA is amazing, as is his commitment level to deliver on what is required. I am sure IAA will flourish over the next two years under his stewardship and I am happy to actively support his initiatives that will build IAA further.”

In his congratulatory message to the new World President, the President, IAA Nigeria Chapter and Executive Vice Chairman of Verdant Zeal Group, Dr Tunji Olugbodi noted that, “IAA Nigeria Chapter celebrate and felicitate with you on this feat and epoch making occasion. In showing the way as the first Global President from the African continent to be bestowed this honour in the 80 year history of the IAA, we are conscious of your sterling qualities and heritage as a seasoned administrator and team player.
“Nigeria is proud to identify with you and you can be rest assured of our support and best wishes now and always”, he added.