Dubai Lynx: Ali Rez given Advertising Person of the Year 2024 honour

He has been called "a true trailblazer for the region" and has helped boost its global standings, writes Campaign Middle East editor Justin Harper

Ali Rez, Chief Creative Officer at IMPACT BBDO for the MENAP region, has been honoured as Advertising Person of the Year, Outstanding Contribution for 2024 by Dubai Lynx.

It is regarded as one of the festival’s most prestigious awards, and celebrates an individual who has made a significant contribution to MENA’s advertising industry in the previous year.

Philip Thomas, Chairman, Dubai Lynx, said: “We are delighted to honour Ali Rez this year, with such an important accolade.

“He is a true trailblazer for the region and has shown an incredible commitment to boosting the region’s global standing in producing the best creative work.

“We are pleased to recognise the crucial contribution Ali has made and we can’t wait to see what’s next for him.”

Also named Creative Person of the Year three times by Campaign Magazine, Ali Rez is the most awarded creative leader in the Middle East, and currently leads output for the IMPACT BBDO Group across the Middle East, North Africa and Pakistan region.

Ali Rez recently took part in a podcast with Campaign Middle East

Rez’s creative leadership has seen Impact BBDO become the first MEA agency to be ranked Global Top 10 on both the WARC and World Creative Rankings in the same year, while winning 29 different No.1 Regional Agency accolades in 2022 and 2023.

His work has contributed to the UAE being ranked amongst the Top 10 Creative Countries in Cannes Lions rankings.

Thousand awards looming?

Rez has won close to a thousand international accolades in his career spanning four continents over 20 years, which include Grands Prix at all the major shows.

At Dubai Lynx alone he has won 23 Grands Prix and a further two Grands Prix at Cannes Lions. In 2023, he was the first Jury President in Cannes Lions’ 70 year history to represent the Middle East.

With an ambition to take the UAE to the No.1 Creativity Ranking spot, Rez has brought to the region a number of firsts, such as the first One Show Best in Discipline Pencil, and the first Andy Bravery Best in Show.

The accolade he is most proud of though is winning the Glass: The Award for Change – at three different LIONS Festivals: Spikes Asia, Dubai Lynx and Cannes Lions.

Teamwork makes the dream work

On receiving the Award, Rez said: “What an incredible honour this is. Honestly speaking though, this award should be named Advertising Persons of the Year, since it needs to include the best team in the world that I am most fortunate to be working with, and without whom I wouldn’t be here.

“I also owe a great deal to generous leaders like Dani Richa and David Lubars for helping me get this far. A big shout out to Dubai Lynx for doing all that they do to expand creativity in the region.”

Ian Fairservice, Vice Chairman, Dubai Lynx, added: “Ali has been instrumental in driving the creative industry forward in the region and elevating the UAE’s global standing, evident in his impressive body of work, which have led him to be ranked No.1 ECD in MENA and APAC on several creative rankings.

“We look forward to honouring him at the Awards Ceremony in March.”

The presentation of the 2024 Dubai Lynx Advertising Person of the Year, Outstanding Contribution Award will take place during the Dubai Lynx Awards Ceremony at the Emirates Golf Club on Wednesday 6 March.

Further information on the festival can be found at www.dubailynx.com.