Bees are all the buzz at CMA awards

Cossette, Veritas, Judy John among many honoured at annual gala

Canada’s ad agencies had much to celebrate at the Canadian Marketing Association Awards on Friday.

Judy John

Judy John

Following a standing ovation from the crowd, the Marketer of the Year award was given to Judy John, CEO of Leo Burnett Canada and CCO of Leo Burnett North America, the first time the honour went to someone from an ad agency.

In addition to campaigns for the agency’s Canadian clients, John was recognized for helping to turn Leo Burnett Canada into a global agency through its international work on brands including Always, Gain and Amazon, as well as her recent promotion to lead Leo’s creative across North America.

The Best of the Best award was given to Cossette and Veritas for their work with General Mills Canada on the “Bring Back the Bees” campaign for Honey Nut Cheerios. The campaign also earned both agencies a gold in the Integrated category, while Cossette added a gold in Advertising and a silver in Digital, with Veritas earning another gold in Community Engagement.

Overall, Cossette received the most awards at the gala, picking up an additional five golds for SickKids’ “Life Unpaused” campaign, as well as wins for McDonald’s Canada and SAQ.

Leo Burnett’s strong showing at the gala included 11 awards for its work with Always, Ikea, TD and Raising the Roof.

The full list of winning agencies can be found at or on the CMA website.

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