Eric Cruz Joins DDB San Francisco as Executive Creative Director

Cruz to Partner with ECD Ben Wolan, Forming Dynamic Creative Team

NEW YORK, Nov. 17, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — DDB North America has announced that Eric Cruz has joined DDB San Francisco as Executive Creative Director, partnering with Executive Creative Director Ben Wolan. The addition of Cruz rounds out DDB SF’s suite of capabilities and propels the agency as an agile creative partner in the connected age.

John McCarthy, President of DDB SF said: “This is a big moment for us. Eric represents both the momentum of our growth to date, but also brings critical capabilities to launch us into the future. He will no doubt be a fantastic partner for Ben, and I am incredibly excited about what is to come for this dynamic team.”

Cruz is a Filipino-American globalist, creative leader, designer, and educator, who brings over 23 years of industry experience. He is known for combining design, storytelling, experience and innovation to deliver the unexpected. Cruz also brings broad international experience, having held various leadership positions at agencies worldwide at Sid Lee, AKQA, Leo Burnett, and Wieden+Kennedy, developing a model for the creative network of the future and exploring how creativity can help invent tomorrow, today.

Most recently as Sid Lee USA and Digital Kitchen’s Executive Creative Director for Innovation & Design, Cruz led the charge in exploring worlds beyond belief and pushing the boundaries of digital storytelling, products, platforms and experiences for clients including Facebook Reality Labs, Tubi, Journi, the LA Rams and Warner Brothers. Prior to that as AKQA Shanghai’s ECD, he led the Greater China team, helping to co-create the future through innovative brand storytelling for Nike, Jordan, Converse, Apple, Airbnb, NBA, Diageo, J&J, Gore-Tex, Lycra, The City of Shanghai and Hong Kong. During his tenure as Leo Burnett Malaysia’s creative leader, Cruz helped evolve and grow a traditional agency of 90 into a forward-thinking agency of 320.

Wolan said: “Eric is different from me in so many ways, and that is very intentional. I wanted a partner who has different skills and experiences than me, but shares the same passion for creativity as I do. Eric brings stellar design and experience skills and with his global lens he’ll help us craft more unexpected stories. I couldn’t be more excited to partner with him, expand our creativity, and grow the SF office.

Cruz began his career at Wieden+Kennedy where he spent over 11 years in Portland, Tokyo and London. He was Co-Founder and Director of W+K Tokyo Lab, the agency’s creative think tank and experimental music label. Cruz regularly lectures to inspire the next generation of talent and has taught Design, Advertising and Moving Media at the Center for Creative Studies Detroit, Temple University Tokyo, and The One Academy Kuala Lumpur. Cruz was also a Founding Member of TEDx Shanghai, which aimed to ignite China’s innovation renaissance through creative dialogue, idea exchange, and transformative evolution.

Cruz said: “The DDB network has a strong legacy and the vision of creating Unexpected Works is one I have strived to live by throughout my career. The opportunity to engage with New Economy brands and explore new ways of brand building in the digital age and Web 3.0 is super exciting. I’m anxious to shake things up with John, Ben, and the amazing team at DDB SF!”

Cruz has been recognized by the Tokyo ADC, Cannes Lions, ADC New York, One Show, D&AD, Spikes Asia, AdFest, AdStars, The Webbys, The FWA, CSS Design Awards, and Japan Media Arts Festival.

Born in the Philippines and raised in the US and Spain, he is currently “back home” in Los Angeles after a 20-year backpack around the world.

DDB Worldwide ( is one of the world’s largest and most influential advertising and marketing networks. DDB has been named 2021 Network of the Year by D&AD and ADC, as well as numerous times by the Cannes International Festival of Creativity and the industry’s leading advertising publications and awards shows. WARC has listed DDB as one of the Top 3 Global Networks for 12 of the last 15 years. The network’s clients include Molson Coors, Volkswagen, McDonald’s, Unilever, Mars, Peloton, JetBlue, Johnson & Johnson, and the U.S. Army, among others. Founded in 1949, DDB is part of the Omnicom Group (NYSE: OMC) and consists of more than 200 offices in over 70 countries with its flagship office in New York, NY.  

Omnicom Group Inc. (NYSE – OMC) is a leading global marketing and corporate communications company. Omnicom’s branded networks and numerous specialty firms provide advertising, strategic media planning and buying, digital and interactive marketing, direct and promotional marketing, public relations and other specialty communications services to over 5,000 clients in more than 70 countries. 

CONTACT: Donna Tobin, Global Chief Marketing & Communications Officer; [email protected]

SOURCE DDB Worldwide