Austin-based branding agency, Ampersand, has bolstered its leadership team with two new hires: Nicole Labadie Walker as vice president of account service and Tom Kirsch as group creative director.
Walker will lead Ampersand’s growing account team as VP, account service, a new role created to add additional depth and diversity to the leadership team as the agency prepares for growth. With a diverse and deep background in branding, advertising and shopper marketing, Walker has developed significant experience in building agency-client relationships, an unparalleled business acumen and a results-oriented mindset. She will work closely with Ampersand partners, Cindy and Jeff Montgomery, to further advance agency operations and processes in anticipation of future growth.
Walker joins Ampersand after spending a little over a year on the client-side at Austin-based tech start-up Tabbed Out where she was VP, marketing. Prior to Tabbed Out, Walker spent 15 plus years at national agencies such as Saatchi & Saatchi X, Leo Burnett and TPN in the New York, San Francisco and Chicago markets, where she was instrumental in developing several award-winning national campaigns for major clients such as AT&T, Jockey, and The Clorox Company, to name a few.
Kirsch joins Ampersand as its new group creative director. In his new role, Tom will be leading the creative team and continuing to grow the agency’s department. He brings 20 years of experience working on a wide variety of brands across all media channels in the Dallas and Austin markets. Prior to joining Ampersand, Tom was a creative lead at global digital marketing agency, SapientRazorfish, where he collaborated on major brands such as Car2Go, Citi, Southwest Airlines and others. He was also at digital agency, POSSIBLE for seven years and spent seven plus years at GSD&M working on branding projects and award-winning campaigns for clients such as AT&T, BMW and PGA Tour.
Ampersand CEO and partner Cindy Montgomery says, “These key hires are a sign of the times for Ampersand and the industry here in Austin. We’re now a magnet for national and international talent and are part of a growing and much more diverse creative community. Our vision at Ampersand is to leverage these talents to reach well beyond our Texas roots. It’s an incredible time to be in advertising.”