So, I occasionally build emails for certain publications to send out to their list of subscribers (my question is not about the value of this practice). In order to maintain the visual integrity of my responsive emails (which are basically built from a facsimile of the framework made by Jason Rodriguez's "Modern HTML Email" book), I request the company to give me their branding (usually in the footer and/or header), and then I fit that into my email code.

After doing this for a certain periodical, I recieved the following message: "I got approval for you to build in our header and footer to your html (see attached files). We do need you to take out all div tags and make inline code. No external CSS files allowed."

An intern--who was just trying to act as a liason for their creative director--said that having "CSS above the body is a risk for the message becoming SPAM". Is there truth to this? If so or not, how do I respond?

View email layout in Litmus:

Post script: I'm not a developer; I just occasionally try to be one.