Pattison will become the first media planning and buying agency boss to be nominated for the prestigious post, a position which has previously been dominated by creative agency bosses.
Once the nomination is ratified by IPA members at a special council committee meeting, Pattison will take up the two-year tenure from April 2005.
As chief executive of PHD, Pattison has just returned from a stint in New York, where he formed PHD USA in 2002.
Prior to forming PHD with Jonathan Durden and Nick Horswell in 1990, which eventually became part of the Omnicom giant global network in 2000, Pattison held senior positions at WCRS (home of incumbent president Woodford) and TBWA.
He began his media career at Masius Wynne-Williams in 1974.
Pattison said: “I am both humbled and excited by the prospect of doing this job. The past and present presidents have made sure that the IPA is in great shape.
“I will do my best, over the next two years, to ensure that it not only remains that way but continues to evolve to meet the challenges it faces.”
By Kevin May