IAB Canada has announced that long-time President, Paula Gignac will step down from her current position, beginning September 1, 2012. Gignac, who has led IAB Canada since September 2004, is moving out of the Greater Toronto Area for the next two years (where IAB Canada’s main office is located), in support of her partner who will pursue a Masters Degree elsewhere in Ontario.
During the search for a new President, IAB Canada initiatives will go forward as planned, and Gignac will actually continue to consult for the organization on a variety of projects beyond the transition — including continuing in her role as lead representative for IAB Canada in its involvement in the Digital Advertising Alliance Of Canada (DAAC) and with respect to IAB Canada’s administration of the DAAC’s Canadian Self-Regulatory Program For Online Behavioural Advertising, which is slated to go live at the end of Q2 2012.
“When my personal circumstances changed, the decision to step down was actually quite an easy one to make, given IAB Canada’s current position and prospects for future success,” says Gignac. “Based on the generously-volunteered expertise of our ever-expanding Membership; the myriad of possibilities for new growth that the Board has developed through its recent Strategic Planning exercises; and of course, the extraordinary capabilities of IAB Canada’s Staff and all of the partner resources that they direct on behalf of the industry, I have nothing but complete confidence in IAB Canada and the vastness of its opportunities going forward, and look forward to continuing to assist the organization in achieving them in any way that I can.”
Gignac leaves her role as President of IAB Canada having directed virtually all of the organization’s major initiatives and growth to date, with just a sampling of her achievements including:
- The building of the IAB Canada organization itself, from a single-person operation in 2004, to a current staff of six, with PQ and Western Regional Chapters also in full bloom and more growth to come;
- The ushering in of Canada’s first set of Universal Online Ad Standards and Ts +Cs, as well as the development of the industry’s first Digital Salary Guide For Publishers + Agencies and Student Guide To Canadian Colleges + Universities Featuring Interactive Courses + Curricula — both of which were global firsts as well;
- The breakthrough creation of the industry’s first One-Day Course In Interactive Marketing + Online Advertising (which Gignac will also continue to teach for IAB Canada in both Custom, In-House and Public forums up to and after September 2012), and the subsequent development of IAB Canada One-Day Courses in Social Media, Mobile Marketing, Paid Search and SEO;
- The expansion of IAB Canada’s research practice from two initial Cross-Media Optimization Studies (CMOST) to a total of nine currently, along with multiple Canadian Media Usage Studies (CMUST) and numerous Internet and Mobile Revenue Surveys;
- The development and programming of IAB Canada’s wildly-successful MIXX Canada Full-Day Conferences + 6-city Roadshow Events — all of which have sold out each year since their inception; and,
- The nurturing of the industry from just $170 million in annual Online ad revenues in 2004; to $1.2 billion in 2007, $2.2 billion in 2010 — and, if ZenithOptimedia’s predictions for Canada are correct — past the $3 billion mark, which will likely occur on her watch later in 2012.
Gignac has also often acted as a conscience for the Digital ad industry — providing a platform within MIXX Canada for visionaries such as Alex Bogusky and Jeff Rosenblum to inspire its players to raise the bar on standards for both the products that they manufacture, as well as the methods used to promote them. She also dovetailed a number of philanthropic endeavours with key IAB Canada initiatives, including partnering with eyeReturn Marketing to allow five key Canadian charities to access free ad inventory as part of IAB Canada’s PSA Program For Late Creative; designating MIXX Canada as “carbon neutral” and offsetting the waste created and energy utilized from its events through plantings with Tree Canada; and most recently, by allowing IAB Canada Members to show off their Digital marketing expertise in programs developed for and donated to the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC).
“IAB Canada and indeed the entire Canadian Marketing community have been incredibly fortunate to have benefited in so many ways from Paula’s dedication, commitment and extreme passion for all things Digital,” says Carolyn Cramer, General Manager, Canada for Tribal Fusion and Vice Chair of IAB Canada’s Board of Directors.
Dominique-Sebastien Forest, Vice President, National Digital Solutions, TC Media and Chair of IAB Canada’s Board of Directors agrees wholeheartedly: “Without a doubt, Gignac is both a leader and an entrepreneur of the highest calibre, and IAB Canada has been privileged to have her direct the organization and indeed the industry for the past eight years,” says Forest. “And in service to that legacy, IAB Canada’s next job is to begin the search for a new President, and work with Paula to create as smooth a transition as possible to the new President, on behalf of both IAB Canada Members and the industry as a whole.”
Candidates wishing to apply for consideration in the search for IAB Canada’s new President should Download the Candidate Specifications Package, and submit their application as per the directions within, by May 7, 2012.