Global CEO - B2B Group
Merkle

Michael McLaren is a successful and dynamic business leader who has worked as an integrated communications specialist in a variety of international management roles in the U.S., Australia, Singapore and Japan. He has extensive experience in managing global integrated brand communication programs; working with key clients including IBM, Microsoft, Dell, Intel and Cisco.

Michael started working in Brand Management at Unilever and spent five years learning marketing at the packaged goods giant before entering the advertising industry. He joined McCann Worldgroup in 1999. McLaren first served as worldwide account director in San Francisco on Microsoft. He was named President of McCann Erickson USA in 2007. In 2009, he moved to Japan in the dual role of CEO of McCann Worldgroup Japan and Regional President for McCann Worldgroup Asia Pacific, where he oversaw operations in 14 countries.

In 2012, he returned to New York as CEO of MRM//McCann. In this role, he was responsible for overseeing global P&L, client relationships, network operations, international growth of the MRM//McCann global network.

Michael joined Merkle in September, 2016. As leader of the agency’s High-Tech practice, he helped craft Merkle’s strategic vision for serving that market, designing and delivering innovative, data-driven marketing solutions that meet the unique needs of its high-tech client base.

Michael was promoted to CEO, Merkle B2B Group in December 2019 – where he has full responsibility for the agency’s B-to-B offering, aggregating capabilities across the breadth of the DAN organization to build a go-to-market strategy that serves the unique requirements of B-to-B marketers. 

Michael has a Bachelors degree in Business and an MBA from the Australian Graduate School of Management. 

Judging panel

Dawn Anderson

Senior Managing Director
Accenture

Mark DiCristina

Vice President of Brand and Mailchimp Studios
Mailchimp

Paul Hirsch

Chief Creative Officer
Doremus

Erin Styles

Head of B2B Communications
Spotify

Meher Mumtaz

Global Brand Director
Western Union

Anamika Gupta

Director, Head of Customer Marketing
Fujitsu Americas Inc.

Nikki Taylor

Marketing Growth Strategy Director, Asia Pacific
UPS

Marisa van Vuuren

Senior Vice President for Brand Strategy & Major Programmes
NTT

Ted Wahlberg

Executive Creative Director
gyro Chicago/Denver

Jada Balster

Vice President, Marketing
Workfront

Kim McNeil-Downs

Director
Deloitte’s Green Dot Agency

Rohan Kamra

Regional Digital Marketing & Media Manager - Asia Pacific & Japan
Intel

Steve Gustavson

Chief Creative Director
Adobe

Paul Foster

Senior Director of Creative Imagery
Getty Images and iStock

Nandita Sahni

Head of B2B marketing
SeatGeek

Daisy Garden

Head of Video, USA
Stein IAS Americas

Jennifer Shaw-Sweet

EMEA Lead B2B Institute
LinkedIn

Jacquie Pelusi

Global Head of Sales Operations
TripAdvisor

Carina De Blois

Global Client Leader & Chief Client Officer
Ogilvy New York

Sherilyn Shackell

Founder & Global CEO 
The Marketing Academy

Sylvia Seybel

Vice President - B2B Client Solutions Marketing
Dell Technologies

Annabel Venner

Former Global Marketing Director
Hiscox

Kim Lauersdorf

Vice President, Marketing
EmblemHealth

Christine Schroeder-Schoenberg

Head of Global Sponsorships
Deutsche Post DHL Group

Dave Montrose

Creative Director
Octopus Group

Michael McLaren

Global CEO - B2B Group
Merkle