Washingtonpost.com CEO Now a Hall of Famer

By: Ann M. Mack

(Adweek.com) Christopher Schroeder, CEO and publisher at Washingtonpost.Newsweek Interactive, and John Osborn, executive vice president, director of integrated marketing at BBDO North America, were among seven executives inducted into the American Advertising Federation’s Hall of Achievement this week.

The awards, which honor professionals aged 40 and younger who are making a significant impact on the ad industry through their leadership, were presented at a luncheon at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York.

Schroeder, who joined The Washington Post Co. in 1995, currently oversees the company’s new media subsidiary, which includes washingtonpost.com and newsweek.msnbc.com. Prior to taking the CEO post, he was chief operating officer and president.

In a video message, Schroeder, was toasted by colleagues, such as Donald E. Graham, CEO and chairman of The Washington Post Co., and Ben Bradlee, former executive editor of The Washington Post, who advised him to “stay obsessed.”

Upon accepting the award, Schroeder listed some of the news events he has lived through during his tenure, including the dot-com boom and bust, concluding, “I have grown eerily comfortable with uncertainty.” A founding member of the Online Publishers Association, where he serves on the board as treasurer, and a board member of the Interactive Advertising Bureau, Schroeder saluted the audience for “constantly thinking anew” in the online and offline advertising realm.

Osborn, who also oversees BBDO’s FedEx account as worldwide account director, is the principal architect of the agency’s integrated marketing communications programs. At the Omnicom Group shop, he coordinates efforts for clients like Cingular Wireless across various units, including AtmosphereBBDO, Proximity, S/R Communications, Redwood Communications and Bombo Sports and Entertainment.

In a video spoof of Forrest Gump, Osborn told a captive, park-bench audience of one that “Mamma says advertising is like a box of chocolates … There are a gazillion layers, lots of glitzy wrapping and a whole bunch of nuts.”

During his thank you speech, Osborn cited integrated campaigns for America Online and GE to demonstrate that BBDO is thinking beyond 30-second commercials or 90-second Super Bowl spots.

The other inductees to the 2003 Advertising Hall of Achievement were: Kathy Delaney, managing partner and executive creative director at Deutsch; David Droga, global executive creative director at Publicis; Susan Mboya, associate director of African American multicultural business development at Procter & Gamble; Stephen Pasierb, president and CEO at Partnership for a Drug-Free America; and Michael Sands, chief marketing officer at Snapple Beverage Group and Mott’s.

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