Jacqui Canney
Jacqui Canney

WPP’s Mark Read has hired Jacqui Canney, executive VP-chief people officer at Wal-Mart Inc., to oversee talent management, leadership development, rewards and recruiting activities of the ad/PR combine.

At $500B Wal-Mart, Canney was charged with empowering its more than 2M employees in 27 countries.

WPP credits Canney for transforming the Bentonville, AR-based retailer into a “people-led, tech-empowered enterprise.”

Prior to Wal-Mart, Canney worked at Accenture for 25 years, a period in which its employee level soared from 21,000 to more than 300,000.

As WPP's global chief people officer, she is to “build a new culture that empowers people to do their best work.”

Read called her “a world-class executive with an outstanding record of leading change at global organizations” and a “passionate advocate of inclusive workplaces.”

Canney will report to Read when she joins the firm June. 1. She will succeed Mark Linaugh, who is retiring.