Friday, March 13, 2009

6538: Go To Hall.

The American Advertising Federation will hold the 60th Annual Advertising Hall of Fame Ceremony on March 26 in New York City. This year’s inductees include Clarence Holte and William “Bill” Sharp.

Clarence Holte
Former Head of Special Markets, BBDO New York

Clarence LeRoy Holte was a pioneer specialist in ethnic markets and publisher and founder of Nubian Press Inc. in New York City.

Clarence Holte was born February 19, 1909 in Norfolk, Va. He attended Lincoln University (Pa.), the American Institute of Banking and the New School of Social Research, both in New York City. He joined Batten, Barton, Durstine & Osborn, Inc. (BBDO) in 1952 and was the first African-American to reach the executive level in a general-market advertising firm. In his work at BBDO, he often traveled to Europe and Africa, where he found inspiration to develop the first advertising campaign that associated a brand with black history. It was called “The Ingenious Americans” campaign and was created for National Distillers’ Old Taylor brand.

Prior to joining BBDO, Holte worked as a teller at Dunbar National bank in Harlem in the 1930s before joining the Works Progress Administration. In 1944, he was hired as a sales representative for Lever Brothers Company.

Holte remained with BBDO for about 20 years, leaving to start Nubian Press in 1971. Its first product, Nubian Baby Book, was designed to acquaint black children with their African-American heritage.

An avid book collector, Holte had a collection of over 7,000 books acquired from all over the world on black history and culture. At one time, it was considered one of the largest and most valuable (over $400,000) private collection of its kind in the world.

In 1979, the Clarence L. Holte Literary Prize was created to recognize work dealing with the cultural heritage of black Americans. And in 1981, Lincoln University awarded him an honorary doctorate degree.

Since 2001, BBDO has sponsored the American Association of Advertising Agencies (AAAA) Clarence LeRoy Holte Multicultural Advertising Intern Program (MAIP) award. The award is given each year to a student who exemplifies outstanding leadership an initiative and a passion for our business, who embraces its principles, and who demonstrates poise, compassion and consideration of the team effort.

Clarence Leroy Holte, a personification of all of the aforementioned attributes, died in Oakland, Calif., at the age of 85 in 1993. He is survived by his daughter, Helen Holte, DDS, and two grandchildren.

William “Bill” Sharp
Former VP/Advertising Manager, Coca-Cola USA; Former SVP & General Manager, Burrell Advertising; Retired President & Founder, Sharp Advertising

William Sharp, retired founder and CEO of Sharp Advertising Inc., is currently a consultant and adjunct marketing professor at Goizueta Business School at Emory University. Sharp opened his Atlanta-based agency in 1990 and served regional and national clients such as Southern Company, Georgia Power, Barnett Bank Inc., Burger King, Canaan Shoes Inc., Bell South and the Coca-Cola Company.

As senior vice president and general manager of Burrell Advertising/Atlanta, Sharp developed targeted advertising for Coca-Cola USA, Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority (MARTA), Underground Atlanta and Georgia Power.

For nearly 10 years as vice president, advertising manager for Coca-Cola USA, Sharp managed all of the advertising for all of the company’s soft drink brands.

Sharp’s experience includes service as director of communications for the Office of Economic Opportunity in Washington, D.C.; copywriter for EURO RSCG Tatham; copy supervisor for Leo Burnett and group supervisor for J. Walter Thompson.

Sharp is well known in the advertising community for his expertise and achievements in communications, for his community involvement and for his contributions to motivating minority youth.

Sharp is the recipient of numerous awards including, Ad Man of the Year for Southern Magazine and The Art Directors Club of New York Award. He is also a noted lecturer; and was the founder/instructor of the “Basic Ad Course,” a American Association of Advertising Agencies–sponsored program that prepared minority people for professional careers in advertising. Sharp also wrote and published a book entitled, How to Be Black and Get a Job in the Advertising Business Anyway.

Sharp is listed in Who’s Who in America; Who’s Who Worldwide and Who’s Who in Advertising. He is immediate past chairman of the Atlanta Educational Telecommunication Collaborative (AETC), the organization that manages and operates WPBA-TV and WABE-FM, Atlanta’s public broadcasting stations. Sharp is a member of the Dean’s Advisory Council, Goizueta Business School, Emory University, and a member of the executive board of the NAACP/Atlanta Branch and serves on President Carter’s Board of Councilors for the Carter Center.

Sharp’s past associations include chairman of the board of the American Advertising Federation, chairman of the National Academy of Engineering Telecommunications Subcommittee on Education, and past member of the Association of National Advertisers board of directors and the Federal Inter-Agency Media Committee that served to recommend communications policies to the president of the United States.

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