A top DoubleClick executive will be leaving the company to join a content play, in the wake of recently announced staff cuts and executive shuffles — shuffles that ended with her in a key leadership position.
Wenda Harris Millard, formerly DoubleClick’s executive vice president of global media, will likely finish out the week at DoubleClick before heading to the top position at Ziff Davis Internet, an online unit of technology magazine publisher Ziff Davis Media.
Millard was one of DoubleClick’s first employees, having served previously as head of domestic media operations. Last month, Millard was moved to the company’s global media practice, reporting to Barry Salzman, who the company tapped as president of global media. Salzman had previously overseen international media.
Millard joined DoubleClick in 1996 as one of its first employees, following a 21-year career in publishing and advertising. She previously served as president and group publisher of media and marketing information publisher SRDS. In stints prior to SRDS, Millard held posts including senior vice president and publisher of women’s magazine Family Circle and executive vice president and group publisher for ad/marketing trades Adweek, Mediaweek and Brandweek.
Millard also previously served as general manager and partner at The Peer Group, a marketing communications firm; general manager of Working Woman Ventures, Inc.; sales development manager at New York Magazine; and promotion manager of Ladies’ Home Journal and American Home magazines.
On Dec. 11, Millard will add the post of president at Ziff Davis Internet to that resume, as well as chief Internet officer and director at Ziff Davis Media.
“Ziff Davis Media has the quality brands that deliver value and opportunity to marketers,” Millard said in a statement. “At Ziff Davis Internet, we are going to leverage innovative technology to deliver the most compelling content and effective marketing solutions.”
Millard did not return calls by press time.
“Wenda is the ideal executive to lead the convergence of Ziff Davis Media’s powerful print brands with the Internet,” said James Dunning, Jr., chairman, president and chief executive officer at Ziff Davis Media. Dunning previously oversaw Millard while both were at SRDS. “Better than anyone, she understands that only strong brands can provide multiple ways for marketers to connect with customers.”
DoubleClick isn’t the first ad serving and technology firm to lose executives to Ziff Davis Media. Spokespeople from Ziff Davis Media said that two vice presidents from CMGI-owned Engage would be joining Ziff Davis Internet: Jenny Gomatos, Engage’s former vice president of media sales, will become the company’s vice president of sales, and Engage’s West Coast sales director Michele Anet-Kuhns will join as national sales director.
Millard’s leaving comes just days after DoubleClick announced its first serious layoffs. The Silicon Alley-based company said Monday that it planned to cut around 170 employees, or eight percent of its workforce. The company said that move is aimed at aligning its internal structure under executive changes it announced in November — namely, Millard’s and Salzman’s new posts.
DoubleClick said it hasn’t yet found anyone to fill Millard’s newly created post, but it did release a statement congratulating her on the appointment.
“For the past four years, Wenda has made a significant contribution to the organization, moving DoubleClick to the market leader position,” the company said in the statement. “We congratulate Wenda on her new opportunity and look forward to doing business together in her new role.”
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