Former Mediacom strategy execs Mike Deane and Tim Russell join CHE Proximity

Paige Murphy
By Paige Murphy | 15 September 2020

CHE Proximity has appointed Mike Deane as chief media officer to lead its media practice and Tim Russell as head of strategy.

The duo join the agency after launching communications consultancy Saintsmiths earlier in the year following their departure from Mediacom.

They previously led strategy at Mediacom as former chief strategy officer and group director of digital strategy.

Deane's immediate focus will be collaborating with other practice leaders at CHE Proximity across data, technology, experience, brand and influence to drive the agency's connected creativity product.

He replaces Ben Shepherd who left the agency to join Thinkerbell.

“We believe in the same kind of philosophy as CHEP, and there aren’t any other agencies that are offering this kind of​ end-to-end, full service business," Deane says.

"We’re looking forward to helping the continuation of that story and fusing that media and creative piece.”

CHE Proximity CEO Chris Howatson says Deane is a "rare" talent who uses both his left and right bain equally.

"I worked opposite his team during his time at Mediacom and witnessed first-hand his mastery of balancing precision and persuasion.

"We’re thrilled Mike has joined CHEP as our media practice lead in the position of chief media officer, and are looking forward to his input on the work.”

CHE Proximity chief creative officer Ant White says Deane has a unique understanding of brands.

“When I first met Mike I thought he could be applying for a brand planning role, not a media one," White says.

"He has a rare understanding of brands and how they exist in our lives, and is genuinely excited about creativity and doing interesting things in the world. Watch this space."

Deane and Russell join the wider leadership team with head of investment and general manager media Daniel Bradley and head of addressable David Shen.

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