Rick Segal, who has had a long and distinguished career in the b2b agency world, announced last month he will join Bethlehem College & Seminary, Minneapolis, as VP-advancement and distinguished lecturer of commerce and vocation. He will take the new post early next year.
Segal is currently president worldwide-chief practice officer at global b2b agency gyro, New York, and will become president emeritus next year. In this new position, he will counsel gyro clients and agency leaders. gyro has not yet named a successor to Segal.
“This move wasn't one I planned or anticipated at all,” Segal told BtoB. “I am exceedingly well-satisfied in my work at gyro and remain wildly optimistic about the firm's future. I came to a conclusion, as a matter of religious faith, that the work I've been asked to do at Bethlehem College & Seminary is a work I am supposed to do, a new calling.”
He will be responsible for donor relations and institutional communications, in addition to teaching and writing.
In 1981, Segal founded the agency that eventually became HSR Business to Business in Cincinnati and merged it with gyro International, London, in 2009. This year, gyro was named BtoB's Top Agency in the large agency category.
“I will continue in my role as gyro's ambassador and be of ongoing counsel to the firm's clients, management and employees, a not-so-elder statesman, of sorts,” Segal said. “Some of my best gyro relationships are with our younger colleagues, to whom I hope I may have the privilege of continuing to be a mentor for many years to come.”
Industry executives reacted to Segal's decision with a combination of surprise and admiration.
“Besides being a huge loss to gyro, Rick's leaving will be a big loss to the b2b marketing profession, to the Business Marketing Association and to b2b thought leadership,” said Gary Slack, chairman-chief experience officer at Slack & Co., Chicago, in a blog post Aug. 29 titled, “Rick Segal—An Appreciation.”