The Advertising Standards Authority, under fire for not having a
broad enough breadth of industry experience on its ruling council, has
appointed the boss of one of the UK's biggest advertisers and a leading
agency executive as members.
Dianne Thompson, the chief executive of the National Lottery operator
Camelot, joins the watchdog body along with Dan O'Donoghue, the Publicis
worldwide strategic planning director.
They replace Hugh Burkitt, chairman of Burkitt DDB, and Peter Mitchell,
a director of Capital Radio and former director of strategic affairs at
Guinness. Both are stepping down at the end of their six-year term of
The appointments are the first to be made by Lord Borrie since he became
chairman of the ASA in January.
They come in the wake of criticism led by Vanessa Hall-Smith, the media
lawyer, that the background of industry council members has not kept
pace with the ASA's expanding remit, resulting in some questionable
Borrie has rejected the claim, arguing that additional membership of the
council would double its size if the 1:2 ratio of industry to lay
members was to be maintained.
Gary Ward, the ASA's head of communications, said: 'These appointments
are not a response to criticism. Lord Borrie has been aware since he
joined the ASA that two council members would have to leave by June and
the replacements are people of enormous experience.'
Thompson, 50, a former head of marketing at Woolworths and the Signet
group, made headlines when she successfully led Camelot's legal
fightback against Richard Branson's attempt to take over the National
O'Donoghue, 54, who is regarded as one of the most cerebral of backroom
figures at Publicis, is a former joint chief executive of the London