Lee Garfinkel, one of the industry’s leading creative talents, is currently CEO of FCB Garfinkel.
Most recently, he was Chief Creative Officer of Global Brands and Chairman of Havas New York, where he won new clients like Atlantic City Tourism and New York Life as well as supervising such campaigns as “The Most Interesting Man In The World” for Dos Equis.
From 2003 to 2009, he was Chairman, Chief Creative Officer at DDB New York. During his six years at DDB, he gained new assignments on Bud Light and Michelob, as well as winning such accounts as Diet Pepsi, Philips Global, Subaru, Lipton Tea, The American Cotton Council, United Technologies Corp., Electrolux Appliances, Legg Mason, Georgia Pacific and Gibson Guitars. Lee was also the architect behind Amplify, the digital group within DDB New York. Since its inception in 2006, Amplify has grown to several million dollars in billings.
Before coming to DDB, he spent 14 months as President and Chief Creative Officer of D’Arcy Worldwide. In that short time, Lee helped improve the agency’s creative output, rejuvenating such famous brands as Cadillac and Crest. His work also helped D’Arcy win the Heineken and Cadbury global accounts.
Prior to D’Arcy, Lee worked at Lowe & Partners, where he spent eight years as Chairman, CEO and Chief Creative Officer, U.S. At Lowe, he was credited with significantly raising the agency’s creative profile with work on such brands as Mercedes-Benz, Diet Coke, Sprite (Obey Your Thirst), Heineken, Citibank, Sun Microsystems, KPMG, Sony, CBS and GMC trucks.
Prior to Lowe, Lee spent three years at BBDO as Executive Vice President and Executive Creative Director, where he created unforgettable work for Pepsi including “Shady Acres,” MC Hammer and the original Cindy Crawford spot.
Before BBDO, Lee was at Levine, Huntley, Schmidt & Beaver for 11 years. Starting as a copywriter, he worked his way up to Executive Vice President, Executive Creative Director. He authored some of the agency’s most admired campaigns including Subaru, Genesee Beer, People Express Airlines, Matchbox cars and Citizen Watches.
Lee has received every major advertising award. In addition to winning Cannes Lions for Subaru, Pepsi, Mercedes, Beneficial and Heineken, his industry honors also include One Show, ANDY and Clio awards.
In 1986, Adweek chose Lee for the magazine’s East Coast All-Star Team of Best TV Copywriters. Three years later, Adweek’s Winners Magazine selected him as the #1 Copywriter and #3 Creative Director in the United States. In 1992, Lee was selected by Crain’s New York Business for its annual “Forty under 40” feature, which profiles executives under 40 making their mark in business. In 1994, Lee was inducted into the Advertising Hall of Achievement. The following year, Adweek once again chose him for their U.S. All-Star Team, this time as Best Creative Director. In 1998, Lee was featured in the Wall Street Journal’s creative leader series. And in 2005, Lee was part of the management team responsible for DDB being named Adweek’s “Global Agency of the Year.”
Lee has served as President of the One Club (1991-1993); in 1998, he chaired the ANDY Awards and in 2002 he was the U.S. Juror at the Cannes Advertising Festival.
An avid musician, he holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Queens College, New York.