Ariad brings Dave Stevenson aboard

Blast Radius and Wunderman vet joins company on the verge of a new identity

Josh Kolm for Strategy November 17, 2016

davestevensonAriad Communications has put a new creative leader in place, hiring Dave Stevenson as its new senior vice-president and creative director.

Stevenson, who has a heavy background in digital and CRM, has spent the last three years as CD at Blast Radius and Wunderman, working with brands including Microsoft, BMW, Nike, OLG and Fido. Prior to that, he was a CD at Proximity and has also had stints at McCann and Grey. His hiring comes following the departure of creative director Trevor Schoenfeld, who joined Sandbox as ECD this summer.

In his new role, Stevenson will support the agency’s existing work for Unilever’s Dry Sprays, Degree AP/Deo and TreSemme hair care lines. He will also play key roles in the creative for several new AOR wins, including McMaster University and California electronics brand Plantronics.

Last year, Ariad was acquired by U.S. private equity firm High Road Capital Partners and merged with Bluespire Marketing in Minneapolis. The combined agencies will soon debut a new name and branding, and one of Stevenson’s tasks will be leading the rebranding effort.

Stevenson’s hiring also comes after Ariad named long-time staff member Tracy Smith as managing director for the Toronto office in August. In a press release, Smith described Stevenson’s hiring as “a key moment in the agency’s evolution” as it charts its course post-merger.

“As we build out our North American presence, Dave will be key to making exceptional creative work an essential part of our new brand’s identity,” she said.