Press Release


Interpublic Hosts Inaugural New York MERGE Awards

May 21, 2009 at 12:58 PM EDT
Event Honors Agencies and Employees on Diversity and Inclusion Issues

NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--May. 21, 2009-- Today Interpublic Group (NYSE: IPG) hosted the inaugural New York MERGE Awards breakfast where it honored agencies and employees from the New York region who have shown leadership in helping IPG achieve its goal of being the world’s most inclusive network of marketing services companies. The NY MERGE Awards celebrated the measurable progress and commitment to the goals of diversity and inclusion made by IPG employees.

All employees in the New York region were asked to submit nominations for the six award categories. Nominations were reviewed by the New York MERGE Executive Committee and winners were selected based on their ability to show real progress against diversity and inclusion goals. The awards breakfast was held at the Westin Times Square and hosted by Michael Roth, Chairman and CEO of IPG and Frank Mergenthaler, CFO of the company.

MERGE is a cross-IPG group of employees made up of representatives from IPG agencies and corporate staff who provide knowledge and support to employee resource groups (ERG) at the company. The goal of MERGE is to bring people together in support of the inclusion of all employees. Currently, there are five active employee affinity groups at IPG, including Asian Heritage, The Black Employee Network, IPGLBT (for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender employees), SOMOS (for Latin and Hispanic employees) and the Women’s Leadership Network. The New York chapter of MERGE put together this first awards program.

Honorees at the New York MERGE Awards included:


  • Legacy in Leadership Award for a leader who has shown outstanding commitment, support and role-modeling: Michael McLaren, President, McCann Erickson U.S.
  • Spirit of Inclusion Award for a champion of volunteer participation and who has taken personal initiative to make a difference: Ranny Cooper, WLN Co-Chair and President, Weber Shandwick Public Affairs


  • Vanguard of Inclusion Award for an organization’s overall efforts and progress: McCann Erickson New York
  • Excellence in Employee Partnership Award for collaboration with employees to increase diversity and create an inclusive work environment: ID Media
  • Excellence in Supplier Diversity Award for an activity, innovation or spending increases: McCann Erickson New York
  • Excellence in Community Partnership Award for their collaboration with community and/or educational organization(s): Lowe New York

“The individuals and companies recognized today are helping to lead our effort to move this company forward along our path to increased diversity and inclusion. We still have a ways to go, but it’s thanks to the commitment of individuals like Ranny and Michael, as well as the efforts of agencies like McCann Erickson, ID Media and Lowe to create a more inclusive workplace, that we’re all making progress,” commented Frank Mergenthaler, CFO of Interpublic Group, and the executive sponsor for MERGE. “Employees both nominated and voted on these awards, which demonstrates the passion that our folks have about these issues at the grass-roots level. People may get involved because they feel it’s the right thing to do, but equally important is the strong business case for a culture of inclusion. We become better partners for our clients, more attractive to the best talent, and ultimately, better positioned to create value for our shareholders,” Mergenthaler added.

About Interpublic

Interpublic is one of the world's leading organizations of advertising agencies and marketing services companies. Major global brands include Draftfcb, FutureBrand, GolinHarris International, Initiative, Jack Morton Worldwide, Lowe Worldwide, Magna, McCann Erickson, Momentum, MRM Worldwide, Octagon, Universal McCann and Weber Shandwick. Leading domestic brands include Campbell-Ewald, Campbell Mithun, Carmichael Lynch, Deutsch, Hill Holliday, Mullen, The Martin Agency and R/GA. For more information, please visit

Source: Interpublic Group

Interpublic Group
Tom Cunningham, 212-704-1326
(Analysts, Investors)
Jerry Leshne, 212-704-1439