When I think back on my career and now being here at Ohio University as a Lecturer in the E.W. Scripps School of Journalism, I’d have to say, “So far, so great!”
After graduation day here at OU in 1981, I started out at Lowe & Partners, New York and got right to it, working on brands I’d grown up with like Diet Coke, Sprite and Citibank. After learning everything I could, I moved to Detroit and an amazing experience at WB Doner, the nations largest independently owned advertising agency. What a ride. I worked almost exclusively on retail. I created and shot dozens of commercials a year. I wrote tons of radio. Humor was king and it was more fun that I ever thought you could have at work. Next up was the creative director position at Ogilvy & Mather in Atlanta working mainly on The Centers for Disease Control, Shoney’s restaurants and several regional accounts. It was my first experience running a small creative group. While in Atlanta, I also had spent evenings teaching copywriting and creative development at the Portfolio Center, the nation’s top post-graduate advertising portfolio school. I loved the agency and the school, but New York was calling. Things really got rolling back in New York when I was lucky enough to hook up with some old friends from Lowe at the Omnicom agency, Merkley + Partners. I had the great opportunity to lead the creative efforts on Arby’s restaurants, AXA Equitable, parts of Mercedes-Benz (including their super luxury brand, Maybach), Glenfiddich whisky, and the Ad Council effort to combat online sexual predators. From Merkley I moved on to DDB, fulfilling a career-long goal of working in the same offices as my longtime hero, Bill Bernbach, the father of modern, creative advertising. At DDB, I ran some great brands like Subaru, Liptons hot and iced teas, Breyers Ice Cream, Klondike Bars, Popsicle and Hertz Rental Cars. Along the way, I’ve won my share of creative awards. I’ve been short listed at Cannes, would up in the pages of Communication Arts, picked up One Show Pencils, Clios, Addys, ANDYS and much much more.
I’m so proud to be back where it all began. Being part of the faculty at this school is an absolute honor. My goal is to bring each and every Strategic Communication student a unique perspective on creativity that builds brands and moves consumers to act. To solve true marketing problems with insightful work that will leave a lasting impression. And to inspire students entering a thrilling profession that will never, ever feel like a job. Yup, so far, so great.