Mel Edwards is the Global CEO of the Wunderman Thompson network, and oversees its 20,000 employees across 90 markets, including creatives, data scientists, technologists, and storytellers.
She began her advertising career with TBWA before moving on to M&C Saatchi’s LIDA where she rose to CEO in just over a decade. Mel started her WPP journey at Wunderman as the UK CEO in 2012, quickly moving up to become the CEO of Wunderman EMEA in 2015, and then taking the global role in 2018.
On the merger of Wunderman and J. Walter Thompson, Mel was named Global CEO of Wunderman Thompson and successfully led the network’s business and brand transition. A catalyst for business transformation, Mel is recognized as a leader with a proven record of helping marketers anticipate and navigate change, and under her leadership, Wunderman Thompson has won numerous high-profile accounts and the agency’s largest brands now include Ford, HSBC, Microsoft, Nestle, Pfizer, Samsung, Unilever, and more.
With Mel at the helm, Wunderman Thompson has implemented a gender-balanced Executive Committee, with women in global CEO, CFO, CPO, CMO and IE&D Officer roles. Plus, Wunderman Thompson is the first global network to have launched an Inclusive Experience Practice, with the aim of bringing inclusive design and accessibility to the marketing landscape.
Mel is recognized as one of the most influential people in digital marketing and advertising, having been featured in Campaign’s A-List, The Drum’s Digerati, HERoes Women Role Models, and Ad Age’s European Women to Watch. She has spoken at a number of international conferences including, most recently, RESET in 2021. She is also a Director of the Ad Council.
She currently lives in London with her husband, Rich, and her two teenage children, Honor and Mack.