Gary Leopold, President and CEO of ISM, Named President of MAGNET Global Independent Agency Network Board of Directors

MAGNET Global Network Elects President and Board Members During Fall Meeting in Tokyo.

Pittsburgh, PA, November 18, 2010 --( At the fall partners meeting of the MAGNET Global Network of independent advertising agencies hosted by Kokokusha in Tokyo, the board of directors elected Gary Leopold as president for a two-year term, effective immediately. Leopold, who is president and CEO of the Boston-based agency ISM, follows Jim Nash, managing partner of Marcus Thomas, LLC in Cleveland, Ohio.

The MAGNET advertising network collectively bill more than $2.7 billion dollars and the organization’s 39 members are located in major markets across the United States and around the world including Tokyo, Hong Kong, London, Dubai, Moscow, Munich, Copenhagen and Paris.

Leopold has been a member of MAGNET for nearly 10 years, and his firm’s extensive experience in the global travel and hospitality industries gives him an understanding of how communications play out in various cultures and countries and will be a great asset in his new post. “I see this as a fantastic opportunity to work more closely with our fellow MAGNET agencies across the globe, and to continually improve the range and geography of the services we can provide to our network and its clients,” said Leopold. “Our goal is to provide our members with the ability to solve problems and support client needs across virtually every communications discipline in all of the world’s significant markets.”

ISM, which has received many of the travel industry’s top communications awards, is a full-service marketing and consulting group specializing in solving problems for some of the world’s premier travel brands. Over the years, Leopold has served as an advisor to many leading travel, hospitality and leisure organizations including Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts, American Express, Emirates, Sheraton Hotels, Hong Kong Tourism Authority, The Islands of The Bahamas, Abercrombie & Kent and Harley-Davidson.

Prior to joining ISM, Leopold was the Corporate Director of Public Relations for Sonesta International Hotels Corporation, overseeing the marketing activities of 13 hotels worldwide. He is a past President of the Hospitality Sales and Marketing Association International (HSMAI) and currently serves on the Board of the HSMAI Foundation. A noted expert in travel marketing, he has taught and lectured on the subject at many colleges and organizations and is widely published in travel industry media. He was honoured in 2005 with the Albert E. Koehl Award, given by HSMAI for lifetime achievement in travel marketing and advertising, an award he shares with such previous recipients as Michael Eisner and Sir Richard Branson.

In addition to naming Leopold as president, other board members were also elected:
Vice President/Membership:

Scott Morgan, President/Partner
Pittsburgh, Pa.

Vice President/Marketing:

Dan Nelson, Jr. President
Nelson Schmidt
Milwaukee, Wis.

Vice Presidents/Board Members:

Kevin Flynn, Partner
Martino Flynn
Pittsford, N.Y. (Rochester)

Mark Lethbridge, CEO
The AGA Group

Steve Morris, CEO
San Diego, Calif.

Yoram Samets, Managing Director
Burlington, Vt.

Jim Nash, Managing Partner
Marcus Thomas, LLC
Cleveland, Ohio

About MAGNET Global Network
Providing global experts and local expertise, MAGNET agencies work with more than 1,000 consumer, retail, business-to-business and industrial clients worldwide. Members share experience, knowledge and ideas with partner agencies domestically and internationally, collaborating on business opportunities and enhancing their ability to compete, serve clients, grow and raise their standard of work in the advertising agency business. Members must maintain a level of commitment to the Network, and new agencies are carefully screened before membership is granted. Currently comprised of nearly 40 agencies and affiliations, MAGNET is always seeking to add leading independent agencies throughout the world. Visit or follow us on Twitter @MAGNETnetwork.

MAGNET Global Network
Cheri Gmiter