Just in time for the annual vacation season, the Illinois Department of Tourism is in the final stages of a review of its ad account. The finalists are said to be incumbent JWT/Chicago, which will cease to have a fully-functioning office in Chicago in about two weeks (go figure), Euro RSCG/Chicago and Cramer-Krasselt/Chicago. Of the three shops in contention, Euro RSCG arguably has fewer internal issues to deal with at the moment. It at least has a chief creative officer in place. C-K recently parted ways with its Executive Creative Director Dean Hacohen. The agency said it will look for a new exec creative director with a pedigree it can leverage. While that search is in progress, Marshall Ross is running the show creatively at C-K.
No one watching this review play out can figure out how the state's tourism department could realistically hand the account back to JWT, given that the agency has pulled the plug on its storied Chicago outpost. JWT/Chicago shop did some great poster work for the account, but that was about it. Some speculate that JWT could keep some sort of service office open here to handle the tourism account, but for such a relatively small account, it hardly seems worth the bother.