John Oldfield to step down as IPA Membership Director

John Oldfield will step down as IPA Membership Director on the 31st July 2017 for a new life in Australia.

John’s first experience of the IPA was when he attended a four-day training course held at New College Oxford in 1968 and he subsequently became a MIPA in 1972.

In 1999, having sold his agency he joined the IPA and was appointed Regional Director in 1999 and Membership Director in 2001 with a brief to oversee the IPA’s member recruitment and retention programmes.

During his 16 years as Membership Director, John has transformed the membership function and contributed enormously to making the IPA the professionally run, highly regarded organisation it is now.

Having been the Chief Executive of an IPA agency for over twenty years he saw every issue from the members’ perspective.

Among his many achievements, he has greatly expanded the membership recruitment and retention programmes; established a rigorous process for recruiting new member agencies; created the programme of retention visits to engage with members; set up two IPA offices as well as the network of Chairmen and City Heads to build the IPA’s profile around the UK; and instigated the annual Membership Reports to demonstrate the value the IPA delivers to its agencies. He has also for many years overseen the Insight Department.

Always looking ahead and studying future trends, John was also instrumental in creating new groups to service emerging sections of the membership, as well in the IPA having a presence at the annual SXSW Interactive Festival.

In recent years John’s focus has been on raising the professional credentials of the IPA and the advertising industry as a whole, globally. In this context, he was the driving force behind the launch of the IPA’s new form of personal membership (Accredited MIPA) and the very significant achievement of Chartered status for the IPA, both in 2016.

A lifelong advertising man, prior to joining the staff of IPA John spent over 30 years working for, and ultimately as the owner-manager of, the Charles Walls Group, a longstanding IPA member agency based in Pudsey, West Yorkshire, which he joined originally in 1967.

He was appointed a JP in 1979 and elected as a Fellow of the IPA in 1993.

John will leave the IPA on the 31st July 2017. Plans for his succession will be announced shortly.

Said IPA Director General Paul Bainsfair “John has been the driving force behind a number of key IPA initiatives. First as the right hand man of Hamish Pringle and then later for me as the driving force behind our gaining Royal Chartered status. His will be big shoes to fill. He leaves a great legacy and has been responsible for many important initiatives.  We will miss his big personality and boundless enthusiasm.”  

Said John Oldfield: “The IPA is 100 years old and I have been involved in one way or another for 50 of them. I have enjoyed my time with the IPA tremendously and hope that it grasps the opportunities and faces the challenges that undoubtedly lie ahead for the profession in the future.” 

Last updated 21 January 2022