Steve Williams

Global COO, Americas CEO, Essence

Steve works within the WPP/GroupM business, leading data and measurement-driven agency Essence as CEO for the Americas region. In this role, he helps ensure that the agency succeeds at making advertising more valuable to the world.

Steve was privileged to have learned his trade in a full-service ad agency environment [at Boase Massimi Pollitt]. Given this experience, he is a firm believer in, and propagator of, creativity. He is as interested in the quality of a message or a creative idea, as how communications planning, data and technology can create a breakthrough execution.

He is zealous about nurturing conditions whereby people can seed and grow ideas together. Leading great people, building strong teams, and driving impactful creativity, get him up early. Steve has always subscribed to a people-first philosophy, believing that a creative and respectful culture begets results in business.

Steve is honored to be the chair of the 4A’s Media Leadership Council in the USA, and is a 4A’s board member.

Previously, he was appointed a Fellow of the IPA, and was awarded the Internationalist’s – Agency Innovator Award in his first year in the USA [2012]. Steve is a frequent judge for key events both locally and globally: Campaign (UK), Media Week (UK), IPA, Irish Effectiveness, Creative Media Awards (US), Cannes Lions (Global), Festival of Media (Global and North America), and the North American Effie Awards [US}.