New York — VMLY&R has announced the appointment of Noel Cottrell as its Chief Creative Officer for Kansas City. In his new role, Cottrell will lead the office’s creative department, and report to Co-Chief Creative Officer of North America John Godsey. A key focus for Cottrell will be on the continued development of world-class creative work for the Wendy’s account.

“Noel is a monster talent and I’ve been a fan of his work for years,” said Godsey. “The way he consistently connects the human truth to the brand truth makes me envious and excited to see how he will help us continue to elevate the work for clients across our Kansas City office. He is going to be a fantastic addition to our leadership team.”

Cottrell joins VMLY&R from Fitzco in Atlanta, where he served as Chief Creative Officer for nearly a decade. Noel was instrumental in growing the agency through his work on brands like Coca-Cola, SONY, Navy Federal Credit Union, French’s Mustard, Harry’s, and Checkers and Rally’s. Under his leadership, Fitzco’s creative work was widely celebrated — with accolades from the Cannes Lions, One Show, Effies, and more — making Fitzco the most awarded agency in the Southeast and a major contender on the international stage. In 2017, Noel was voted onto the Adweek 100 as one of 15 Chief Creative Officers who are inspiring the advertising of tomorrow.

Early in his career, Cottrell co-founded two successful South African advertising agencies — Joe Public and FoxP2. He later moved to the U.S. where he worked as Executive Creative Director at Grey New York on celebrated campaigns such as E*TRADE’s “Talking Babies” and P&G’s Febreze “Breathe Happy” blindfold campaign.

“VMLY&R is an agency that creates powerful cultural connections between brands and consumers. The work coming out of the Kansas City office is some of the best in our industry, from Wendy’s voice on social to the amazing Fortnite activation and ‘Feast of Legends’ game. It’s amazing,” said Cottrell. “I couldn’t be more excited to join this talented, humble group and get to call Patrick Mahomes my quarterback.”

The announcement builds on the creative momentum for VMLY&R’s Kansas City office, which ranked among the top 10 offices in North America according to the Cannes Lions Festival in 2019. The office has garnered 26 Cannes Lions for Wendy’s alone in the past few years, and has received accolades from the industry’s leading shows including the One Show, D&AD, Clio Awards, Effies and more for its award-winning work on a range of blue chip clients.

“We’re excited to welcome such a creative talent like Noel to the Wendy’s and VMLY&R creative team,” said Carl Loredo, chief marketing officer of Wendy’s. “As we continue to distinguish what make Wendy’s unique, different and special, Noel will be able to bring his past experiences and creative perspective to continue to help us on our journey to make authentic connections with our customers and to create ground-breaking work.”