CEO and founder of Duke Group, Wayne Naidoo had this to say: “This was a very easy decision to make. When Suhana joined the team, she seamlessly integrated into the Duke ethos and environment. I am excited to have her at the helm with the Exco team, leading Duke Group into the future. Suhana has that unique ability to inspire great work and lead with heart. I have no doubt that she is the right person for the job.”
Suhana has spent 18 years in advertising during which time she has made great strides, not only in her work, but in her contribution to the industry. As a woman of colour, she has been focused on creating access to the industry for young women and creatives of colour. Gordhan says: “I feel honoured to become CCO. I have such respect for Duke and its leadership to be able to promote from within. This is deeply personal to me, I get to take up the ranks amongst a tiny handful of women CCOs, let alone women CCOs of colour. I want to make sure that other young women coming up in the industry know that there is a place for us at the top. It hasn’t always been ours for the taking, but now it is, and it’s about time. It is my dream that this industry looks different to the one I started out in.”
Duke is committed to excellence, and beyond the work, this is about leading the charge in real transformation – recognising, rewarding, and developing talent by looking inward first. Duke has the compass set for a world-class reputation, and the group believes that it starts with authenticity, and with developing their own people with a global mindset, achieved through local pride and prowess.
Gordhan has many local and international awards under her belt. She was baptised as a Cannes Lions Juror in 2017. And this year, she was again given the honour for the Film Craft Category. She has also judged at One Show and The Clios. Gordhan serves on key industry boards in South Africa – The Loeries and the Creative Circle Exco. She is the former “Chair Aunty” of The Loeries, where she started Open Chair, which creates space for young women in advertising to have face time with senior female leadership.This year she was invited to represent Africa alongside 21 other global creative leaders on the International Board for the One Club for Creativity.
Steve Miller, chief strategic officer at Duke Group says: “Working alongside Su has been an uplifting experience. She brings a wealth of experience but also a freshness of thought, a breadth of vision and an eye for the big idea that is truly remarkable. And she’s a magnet for great creative talent and a superb nurturer to boot. Given the nature of our expansion plans we’ll be putting this flair to full use over the next few years, and I look forward to witnessing Su’s future growth.”