Cilla Snowball CBE


Current position: Group Chairman and Group CEO, AMVBBDO

Course: BA, French, 1981


This mentor may be of interest to students with an interest in creative careers or working in advertising.


Group Chairman and Group Chief Executive of advertising and communications company AMV BBDO. French graduate Cilla Snowball has worked in advertising roles since leaving the University of Birmingham in 1981. Her career began as a trainee with Allen Brady & Marsh, before moving to Ogilvy & Mather as an Account Manager. She then joined AMV in 1992 and has held a senior management position for the past 16 years at AMV BBDO, the largest advertising agency in the UK. Cilla was awarded a CBE for services to the advertising industry in January 2009. She sits on the boards of BBDO Worldwide, Derwent London PLC, Comic Relief and the Women’s Business Council.

Quotes from mentees

  • Cilla has been a fantastic support, in both a professional and personal sense; providing great careers advice and also advising me about how to cope with the stresses of final year.
  • In our last meeting, Cilla emphasised the importance of maintaining a work-life balance and receiving feedback from my tutors, and I have really been able to take her advice on-board. She has really helped me to alter my perspective about time management and how to balance my various commitments.
  • I am so fortunate to have Cilla as a mentor; we have been able to forge a great relationship. She has been inspiring and an excellent role model, and it has been great to learn how we are so like-minded.
  • Having the chance to attend both the Alumni event and the Management Today Inspiring Women Networking Event, in addition to my mentoring session with Cilla, has already enabled me to increase my level of confidence, refine my networking skills and meet key people who have provided me with some valuable advice about starting my professional career. So far the Alumni Leadership Mentoring Programme has been an amazing experience, and I am really looking forward to my next mentoring session in early December.