Leo Burnett Group and Saatchi & Saatchi Canada promote Stephanie McRae to SVP, Head of Human Resources

Recognizing her impact across both agencies as well as the broader Publicis Groupe Canada.

TORONTO – February 6th, 2024 – Leo Burnett Group and Saatchi & Saatchi Canada have promoted Stephanie McRae to SVP, Head of Human Resources, as the agencies bolster their talent teams following continued growth.

Beginning her career at Grip, Stephanie cut her teeth within the Omnicom Group rising quickly to VP, Human Resources at BBDO. Most recently, she was at Taxi, running global operations for HR prior and during the acquisition by WPP.

In 2020, Stephanie joined Publicis Groupe Canada, taking on a key role in managing talent for two of its brands, Saatchi & Saatchi and Leo Burnett, where she successfully achieved the revered “Great Place to Work” award with her team in 2021, 2022 and 2023. Simultaneously, Stephanie has led efforts to formalize and launch an ambitious and concrete Diversity and Inclusion agenda across all Publicis Groupe brands in Canada.

“Working alongside Stephanie has been and continues to be a privilege. Her relentless pursuit to bring in and nurture the best talent and help create an environment where our people can do the best work of their careers is contagious.” says Ben Tarr, President Leo Burnett Group Canada. “She is deserving of this promotion, and I can’t wait to continue delivering on the big agency ambitions with her leading our talent strategy”.

In her role as the Head of DE&I for Publicis Groupe Canada, Stephanie has spearheaded transformative cross-Groupe initiatives such as “This is the job”. A program dedicated to fostering diversity in the industry by introducing young, racialized individuals to the field of marketing.

“Stephanie has been a huge contributor the team here at Saatchi & Saatchi, helping to bring amazing talent to our agency and playing a major role within our leadership team” says Stuart Payne, President/CEO Saatchi & Saatchi. “She plays a huge part in shaping our workforce and contributing to the amazing culture we have here in the agency”.

Stephanie also played a crucial role in backing “Black Youth Can”, a pro-bono campaign and brand platform involving over 40 Groupe employees for more than 2 years. The campaign sheds light on the CEE Centre for Young Black Professionals, a Toronto non-profit offering free career skills training and holistic support to Black Youth.

“Stephanie’s energy and commitment to our Groupe wide DE&I efforts have been invaluable,” says Andrew Bruce, CEO Publicis Groupe Canada. “As we implement our Power of One model, the importance of having a coordinated DE&I effort is mission critical. We are all responsible in equal parts for supporting and encouraging such an important shift in our approach to talent. Stephanie and her team make it all possible.”


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