Havas New York strengthens senior leadership with three new hires

Havas New York new hires

Marcelo Ramirez and Bharat Kumar and Melissa Tifrere mark the first hires by chief creative officer Dan Lucey, who took Havas New York’s creative helm in December 2020.

Havas New York has hired three senior leaders to help execute the company’s vision: to make meaningful work fueled by culture. Industry-admired partners Marcelo Ramirez and Bharat Kumar join Havas New York as executive creative directors from Johannes Leonardo and celebrated producer Melissa Tifrere brings an entrepreneurial spirit to the role of head of integrated production. Tifrere most recently led compelling productions for BBDO, JOAN, Translation, and 72andSunny as an independent executive producer.

“My priority is to build one of the most inclusive, collaborative creative departments in the industry with only the best talent that loves what they do; it’s that simple,” said Lucey. “Marcelo and Bharat’s work consistently raises the bar in terms of how it has influenced culture and changed society for the better — all while still selling products. They understand that brand actions speak louder than ads. Melissa, who I’ve worked with before, is one of the most dynamic producers in the business. She can effortlessly tackle large scale productions and also has the agility for fast-moving quick turns. All three are creative trailblazers who will deliver and execute memorable work for our clients.”

Prior to Johannes Leonardo, Ramirez and Kumar were VP, creative directors at Momentum WW. Over their combined 30 years in advertising, they’ve worked together across a wide range of categories including CPG, beer/spirits, automotive, fashion and sports, and on renowned brands like Nike, Coca-Cola, American Express, Kraft-Heinz, and others. For much of that work, including the notable “Church of Hoops” for Nike, Ramirez and Kumar have been recognized at the industry’s top award shows, including Cannes Lions — where they won two Grand Prix awards — D&AD, The One Show, Clios and The ANDY’s.

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“With the Havas leadership in place, Dan, Bharat and I are just thrilled to make our marks as creative leaders,” said Ramirez. “We’re ready to build a well-represented creative department and cultivate the next generation of creative dynamos. We’d like to think we have a lot to offer in what they’ll learn to do — and more importantly, what not to do — from us.”

“We’ve been pretty lucky to work with some amazing creative leaders — people whose work we’ve admired and been jealous of. So when we got the call from Dan, we definitely sat up, leaned in, whatever you want to call it,” added Kumar. “The ambition he has for this place is hypnotic, and the chance to help put Havas New York back on the map — and, hopefully, one day make it the most creative shop in the country — that was just too good to pass up. We’re not cartographers, but we like maps, and re-drawing them seems pretty exciting.”

With a strong passion to help creatives bring their ideas to fruition, Tifrere has been producing for the last 14 years. She brings a modern take on production with a keen eye for visual storytelling and has worked at many of the leading creative shops in the industry—large and small. Tifrere has delivered captivating work for Microsoft, BMW, AT&T, Foot Locker, PepsiCo, Reebok, Chase, Marriott, Verizon, Crayola, Sharp, Chevron, United Airlines, Goldman Sachs and USPS. As a senior producer at Munited/McCann, she oversaw the entire production process from beginning to end for the Microsoft account. Prior to McCann, Tifrere was the lead producer on BMW at KBS.

“I’m passionate about bringing words to life in thought-provoking ways that make a person feel something,” said Tifrere. “I look forward to sharing my vision in this new role and collaborating with the incredible Havas New York creative team and clients to deliver the most expressive content at the highest standards.”


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