212NYC Winter Gala: Trust, Transparency & Quality Will Usher in a New Golden Era for Advertising

At WHOSAY, we’ve always believed in the power of humans, and their creativity, to solve problems and deliver measurable results and the host and honorees of the 212NYC Winter Gala 2018 reinforce that vision.

Honorees Salima Popatia, VP Global Online Marketing & Merchandising at Estee Lauder, David Cohen, President North America, Magna Global and host Shenan Reed, President, Chief Client Officer, Publicis Groupe, shared the wisdom that has positioned them as advertising’s households names while preserving the vision that keeps them ahead of the curve.

Also, as honorees were the recipients of the 212NYC Weaver Award for Digital Sales Excellence, Katherine Divney, Seeking Alpha, and Meiling Morris, Scripps Networks, as well as the recipients of the 212NYC Ari J. Bluman Rising Star Awards, Alyssa Sergi, Wavemaker and Anishaa Janardan, Spark Foundry.

The 15th edition of the 212NYC Winter Gala, “Crystal” edition as host Reed pointed out, kicked off with an inventory of the changes undergone by the industry since the Gala’s foundation in 2003. “In 2003 women were 20% of the agency leadership today we are 32%,” Reed said, delivering one of the most positive points of the night.

 Shenan Reed, President, Chief Client Officer, Publicis Groupe, hosted the 212NYC Winter Gala 2018

Shenan Reed, President, Chief Client Officer, Publicis Groupe, hosted the 212NYC Winter Gala 2018

Cohen accepted his honor by predicting a return “to those glory days,” a “magical time” of “endless possibilities and endless promise” like the one that led to the foundation of 212NYC back in 2003. “I don’t think any of the founding board members realized or had any idea what we were in for fifteen years ago,” he said.

 "We, as an industry, will realize the value of trust, the value of transparency, quality, relationships and effectiveness," said Honoree David Cohen, President North America, Magna Global

"We, as an industry, will realize the value of trust, the value of transparency, quality, relationships and effectiveness," said Honoree David Cohen, President North America, Magna Global

He also highlighted that, as the industry as a whole realizes the value of “trust,” “transparency,” “quality,” “relationships” and “effectiveness,” we’ll continue to “keep fighting the good fight” and move forward towards a return to a new era of endless possibilities. We agree with him: advertising’s best days are ahead of us.   

 Honoree Salima Popatia, VP Global Online Marketing & Merchandising at Estee Lauder, and host Shenan Reed, President, Chief Client Officer, Publicis Groupe

Honoree Salima Popatia, VP Global Online Marketing & Merchandising at Estee Lauder, and host Shenan Reed, President, Chief Client Officer, Publicis Groupe

Popatia then accepted her honor by thanking her team without which she said none of this could’ve been possible. “As we look forward, I am really excited,” she continued. “There’s a lot of things that people are talking about right now: big data, 24/7 consumer, six-second creative briefs and mobile,” she added. “All these things are converging together at the same time and it’s gonna be really exciting because what they’re going to make us do is be even more innovative with the experiences, with the ad units, with the advertising with how we deliver what we need to deliver as advertisers.”  

 Team WHOSAY representing at the 212NYC Winter Gala 2018

Team WHOSAY representing at the 212NYC Winter Gala 2018

The Gala continued with the presentation of the 212NYC Weaver Award for Digital Sales Excellence, Katherine Divney, Seeking Alpha, and Meiling Morris, Scripps Networks, not only for crushing their numbers but also for making “those around them better every single day,” setting out “to create real business value for their clients and agencies” and elevating the profession “through their behavior and their character.” Congratulations!    

Ed Wise, Vice President of 212NYC then introduced Deb Bluman who presented the 212NYC Ari J. Bluman Rising Star Awards to Alyssa Sergi, Wavemaker, and Anishaa Janardan, Spark Foundry.

“Ari was a mentor and an advisor. He helped people find their North Star so the Rising Star award makes perfect sense. The industry needs mentors, thought leaders, invisible hands to offer unconditional support to your teams,” she said.

Lastly, Reed closed with a challenge to the industry. Reminiscing her days of playing virtual world game Second Life, back in 2003, she asked the audience to consider what happens to our beloved industry when the metaverse actually exists “and we can download our brains into continue to live on in prosperity forever.”

“Our audiences [will] get bigger, the number of people we can continue to reach gets bigger. They may not have human form but they still have the opportunity to earn, they still have the opportunity to think, they still have the opportunity to spend,” Reed said. “I challenge to think about the advertising opportunities in the metaverse.”

Correction: A prior version of this article mistakenly referred to Deb Bluman as the daughter of Ari J. Bluman