Many of the world's most recognizable ad campaigns crossed Carla Michelotti's desk before popping up on TV sets, billboards, magazines and Web sites around the globe. As general counsel for Leo Burnett Worldwide, Michelotti is the legal gatekeeper on the advertisements for a diverse slate of blue-chip brands, including Philip Morris, Kellogg's, General Motors and Procter & Gamble.
But Michelotti's influence extends far beyond Leo Burnett's client base. She is internationally known as a chief strategist for the ad industry. She works tirelessly with lawmakers in the U.S. and abroad to promote self-regulation and free commercial speech.
Q: How do you deal with regulators?
A: I have worked with government regulators quite a bit. I always feel that if we are all doing our jobs, the regulators, our attorneys and the clients should be on the same side. Over the years, Leo Burnett has been a strong supporter of advertising self-regulation.