Stoddart will remain based in Chicago, the global headquarters of Leo Burnett.
The network's current chairman and CEO, Tom Bernardin, will stay on as chairman through June 2017.
“Maurice Lévy and I are both confident that Rich is the best person to incarnate Leo Burnett on this new journey,” said Arthur Sadoun. CEO of Publicis Communications. “And we know we can count on Tom and his wealth of experience to actively help the Publicis Communications ComEx achieve its objectives.”
Publicis Communications ComEx is a group of network leaders Sadoun established at the start of the year.
Stoddart's career with Leo Burnett started in 2005 when he was appointed to run Leo Burnett Chicago by then-worldwide CEO, Bernadin. Under Stoddart’s leadership, Leo Burnett North America has seen significant growth and client acquisition.
"After 40 years in the business, it is the perfect time to pass the reins to Rich," said Bernardin. "[He] is an incredibly talented business leader, a tremendous champion for creativity and talent and my obvious successor."