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news / Cannes Lions present Lion of St. Mark lifetime achievement award to Susan Hoffman, CCO of Wieden+Kennedy

Cannes Lions present Lion of St. Mark lifetime achievement award to Susan Hoffman, CCO of Wieden+Kennedy

Susan Hoffman has defined Wieden+Kennedy’s culture for 40 years, setting the bar for creative excellence and ground-breaking work

12 April 2023

Cannes Lions has announced that it will honour Susan Hoffman, CCO, Wieden+Kennedy with the Lion of St. Mark award for a lifetime of service to creativity at this year’s Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity.

Wieden+Kennedy launched in 1982, with Nike as its first client. Susan Hoffman joined W+K as employee No. 8 and has spent the last 40 years defining Wieden+Kennedy’s culture and setting the bar for creative excellence and ground-breaking work. 

Hoffman has held creative leadership and management roles in every corner of the independent network, and she’s injected her unique perspective into some of the most memorable ads W+K has produced, including Levi’s “Go Forth”, Chrysler’s “Born of Fire”, Old Spice’s “The Man Your Man Could Smell Like”, Nike’s "Revolution", "If you let me play", "Da Da Ding" and so many more. Susan also found time to run Wieden+Kennedy 12, the agency’s first experimental ad school that launched in 2004 and brought up some of the most successful creative talent for a decade. 

Since 1982, W+K has won 451 Lions at the Festival, including a 2022 Mobile Lions Grand Prix for Google’s “Real Tone” technology, and a Creative Effectiveness Lions Grand Prix for the Nike campaign “Crazy Dreams” in 2021. Wieden+Kennedy London also won the inaugural Social & Influencer Lions Grand Prix in 2018 for the epic “Nothing Beats a Londoner” campaign.  

Philip Thomas, Chairman, LIONS, said, “We’re delighted to present this year’s Lion of St. Mark to industry trailblazer Susan Hoffman. Susan has been instrumental in driving the industry and creativity forward over the last forty years, with an impressive body of work that reflects her unique perspective and ability to challenge the status quo in order to harness creativity as a force for progress for people, business and society. She has supported so many others on their own creative paths, and we can’t wait to welcome Susan to the stage to share her creative journey with the Cannes Lions audience in June.

Susan Hoffman, CCO, Wieden+Kennedy, commented, "It’s hard to believe I was the first female creative at W+K. People ask me why I’m still here. My answer—Dan and David. They cared about the people and the power of creativity, and not themselves. Giving people a voice was their mantra. To quote Dan “The biggest advantage you have in this business is your own voice.” This belief gave not only me but everyone who has come through the doors of W+K support and confidence to find our own voices. These diverse voices are our secret sauce and what makes great work. Dan and David passed us the baton to inspire more people to understand this. Don’t drop it."

Susan Hoffman will be honoured with the Lion of St. Mark at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity. She will also speak on stage in the Lion of St. Mark stage session, taking place on Friday 23 June. Cannes Lions runs from 19-23 June, in Cannes, France. 

This year, Cannes Lions is offering a Creative Brand Marketer Pass. Exclusively for brands, the pass is designed to help brand marketers learn how to unlock creativity with learning opportunities, insights and exclusive networking invites. Additionally, LIONS, the global benchmark for creativity, and WARC, the authority on marketing effectiveness have launched Creative Impact - a co-curated stream of content aimed at marketers that will run every day and across multiple stages as part of Cannes Lions. Attendees will learn how to apply creative effectiveness in their own work amid a challenging climate for marketing budgets, as well as how to tackle the urgent need to prove the role creativity plays in supercharging sustainable commercial growth. Find out more here