Visionary Founder of Siegel+Gale Led Firm for More Than Four Decades
NEW YORK June 7, 2012—Global strategic branding and experience firm Siegel+Gale today announced that Alan Siegel, its founder and chairman, will leave the company after 43 years. A champion of simplicity and clarity, Mr. Siegel guided Siegel+Gale to its position as a top-tier branding firm built on a concept that was way ahead of its time: “Simple is Smart.”
The 74-year-old Mr. Siegel, who is considered one of the country’s leading authorities on branding and business communications, pioneered the use of plain English for complex legal documents for business and government, bringing clarity to insurance policies, bank loan notes, mutual fund prospectuses and the IRS’s 1040EZ form. He also popularized the concept of “brand voice” to describe integrated communications programs that reflect the unique character of companies.
Over the years, Siegel+Gale has strengthened the brand and improved customer experiences for many of the world’s most recognized organizations: American Express, the NBA, 3M, Caterpillar, Xerox, Dell and the United States Air Force. In addition, the firm has created award-winning work for nonprofits such as The Legal Aid Society, Phoenix House, The New School, Carnegie Mellon University and the Carey Business School at Johns Hopkins University.
After departing Siegel+Gale this June, Mr. Siegel will assume the role of chairman emeritus and serve in an advisory role for the firm. He will continue to provide strategic counsel and pursue his passion for simplicity through teaching, research and a new website devoted to clarity. Mr. Siegel serves on the boards of numerous business, cultural and professional organizations including the American Theatre Wing, the John Jay College of Criminal Justice, The Legal Aid Society and the American Agora Foundation, publishers of Lapham’s Quarterly.
“Alan’s passion for building brands, his commitment to excellence and his desire to make a positive difference in everything he does has inspired me for the past 15 years,” said Mr. Srere, co-CEO of Siegel+Gale. “Going forward, I feel a great responsibility to live up to Alan’s belief in the transformative power of simplicity, and to deliver it in everything the company says and does for our clients.”
“Alan is a key member of a very small group that helped shape the branding discipline as we know it today, and in the process built one of the world’s foremost brand experience and design consultancies,” said Mr. Belk, co-CEO of Siegel+Gale. “Alan’s profound influence extends to many industries, the nonprofit world and the arts community. He will continue to have a recognizable impact on any organization or project in which he is involved.”
Mr. Siegel’s departure was marked on May 17 at a small dinner at Studio 450 in midtown Manhattan. Among the guests who celebrated Alan’s career to date and his transition were current and past communications, design and government luminaries, as well as Siegel+Gale clients. During the event, a panel discussed Mr. Siegel’s remarkable brand-building career. The participants were:
- Clive Chajet, former chairman of Lippincott & Margulies Inc. and current board director at Wendy’s
- Nancye Green, CEO of Waterworks and past president of AIGA
- Keith Reinhard, chairman emeritus of DDB Worldwide
- Massimo Vignelli, founder of Vignelli Associates
- Peter Vaughn, senior vice president, Global Brand Management and Marketing at American Express
Among the projects occupying Mr. Siegel’s time is his forthcoming book Simple, which he co-wrote with his longtime colleague Irene Etzkorn, executive director of the firm’s Simplification practice. Simple is due for release in Spring 2013. The book will be published by Twelve, a division of the Hachette Book Group.
Siegel+Gale is a global strategic branding and experience firm committed to building world-class brands through elegantly simple, unexpectedly fresh strategies, stories and experiences. With Simple is Smart as its operating philosophy, Siegel+Gale delivers powerful services in brand development, simplification, research and digital strategy.
Since its founding by branding pioneer Alan Siegel in 1969, Siegel+Gale has helped drive business results for leading corporations, nonprofits and government organizations worldwide. Siegel+Gale has offices in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, London, Hamburg, Dubai, Shanghai and Beijing and strategic partnerships around the world.
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