Founder And Creative Chairman, Droga5
Growing up in an Australian ski resort, David couldn’t imagine anything better than touring the world as a ski instructor. Ironically, it was his imagination that took him abroad, not his skis.
David launched his career by winning top student honors at the Australian Writers & Art Directors School.
At 22, he became a partner and Executive Creative Director of OMON Sydney. Over the next five years, OMON won Australian Agency of the Year twice and Ad of the Year four times.
In 1996, David moved to Singapore to become Executive Creative Director of Saatchi & Saatchi Singapore and Regional Creative Director of Saatchi Asia.
By 1998, Saatchi was the region’s most successful network, and Saatchi & Saatchi Singapore was at the epicenter of this transformation. Media Marketing named Saatchi Asia Regional Network of the Year and Advertising Age named the Singapore office International Agency of the Year.
Then, the Saatchi head office came calling. At 29, David was promoted to Executive Creative Director of Saatchi & Saatchi London.
In 2002, Saatchi & Saatchi London won Agency of the Year at the Cannes International Advertising Festival. Later that year, both Advertising Age and Adweek named Saatchi Agency of the Year.
In 2003, another challenge came knocking and David packed his bags again. This time, he headed to New York City as the first-ever Worldwide Chief Creative Officer of the Publicis Network. In less than two years, Publicis enjoyed a very public creative and new business renaissance around the world.
However, tired of growing other people’s companies, David decided to start his own agency. In 2006, Droga5 was launched in New York City.
Droga5 has twice been named Agency of the Year by Creativity magazine (2007 and 2011), and made Advertising Age’s Agency A-List in both 2010 and 2011. It is now the fastest growing independent agency in America.
Along the way, David has also received countless personal accolades. To date, he is the single-most awarded creative at the Cannes International Advertising Festival, with over 80 Cannes Lions, including 7 Grand Prix and 4 Titanium lions.
In 2005, David was inducted into the American Advertising Federation Hall of Achievement. Esquire magazine has featured David in its annual “Best and Brightest” issue three times, and he was the first recipient of the Boards magazine Lifetime Achievement Award.
While in London, he was named World’s Best Creative Director by Advertising Age.
From his time in Asia, David is included in Media Marketing’s Hall of Fame and was honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award by Campaign Brief Asia.
In Australia, Creative magazine named him Australian Creative Person of the Decade.
In 2012, the American Australian Association and G’Day USA honored him for his business success and he was also honored by the Australian Advance committee and named their "Global Australian of The Year."
David sits on the board of New York’s New Museum, the Facebook Creative Council and Qantas’ Brand Council. He lives with his wife and three children in Manhattan.
Beyond his family and building a new venture, David’s favorite topics are art, the environment and anything Australian.