Brad Brinegar

Brad Brinegar

CEO, Cheil in North America at Cheil Worldwide
Durham, United States

About me

I am unapologetically an "ad guy." And proud of the work that we have done at McKinney to continually challenge the boundaries of what we call advertising.

I had three experiences at Dartmouth that began pointing me towards this crazy business. I majored in anthropology, which taught me how to view the world from other people's shoes. I edited the humor magazine (the same one that launched Dr. Seuss), which introduced me to the intersection of art and commerce. And I had the chance, as a walk-on, to have the most intensely collaborative experience in sports as a varsity oarsman.

After college, I earned an MBA at Columbia. I majored in finance, not because it was a career interest, but because I figured that if I was paying that much tuition, I should study something I wouldn't pursue on my own. That experience convinced me to seek something entirely different, which was the final step on my path to advertising.

Why do I love what I do? Because every time we put an idea into the world, we have the power to change the fortunes of our clients' brands while adding value to and improving the lives of their customers. And because, for people who embrace change, there's no more exciting business in the world.


CEO, Cheil in North America
Cheil Worldwide
August 2015 - Present (8 years 2 months)
While retaining my role at McKinney, I also lead the charge on setting the vision for the Cheil network in North America and support the three agencies that comprise Cheil's holdings in North America — The Barbarian Group, iris Worldwide and McKinney — to both serve domestic clients and contribute to Cheil's global growth.
Partner, Chairman & CEO
February 2002 - Present (21 years 8 months)
My team has grown McKinney as a creatively-led, results-driven agency that AdAge has called "uniquely suited to thrive in a digital world."

In 2008, I led the management buyback of McKinney from Havas.

In 2012, McKinney became part of Cheil Worldwide, giving us the ability to move ideas to 37 countries.

In 2013, we opened McKinney New York, operating with a "one agency, two doors" single P&L collaborative model of shared expertise and resources.

We serve a great portfolio of clients including Nationwide Insurance, Samsung, Sherwin-Williams, Travelocity, ESPN, The Coca-Cola Company, Mizuno, Mentos and Gold's Gym.

Since 2003, McKinney ranks 7th of 248 Effie-winning U.S. agencies. In 2012, McKinney was named "The Most Effective Independent Agency in the World" by Warc and Effie Worldwide.
Trainee to Chief Executive Officer
Leo Burnett USA
July 1979 - October 2001 (22 years 3 months)
I talked my way into an internship at Burnett between my two years of business school and fell head over heels in love with this business.

Over a 20-year career at Burnett, I had the chance to lead teams that created award-winning work on a wide range of great clients, including P&G, Kraft, Kellogg's, Miller Brewing, StarKist, LensCrafters, First Brands and Dairy Management, Inc.

I left briefly in 1998 to launch Ammirati Puris Lintas Chicago.
President & CEO
Ammirati Puris Lintas Chicago
January 1998 - April 2000 (2 years 3 months)


MBA, Finance

1977 - Present (46 years 9 months)

AB, Anthropology & Philosophy

1973 - Present (50 years 9 months)

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