Picking what to put in this gallery was quite a "Sophie's Choice."

In the end, I stayed away from including things just to check them off a list. So there are no banner ads or emails or brochures or direct mail pieces or even web sites - even though I've done many. 

Instead, I focused on pieces that show a particularly important cross-channel skillset (long copy, music direction, story-telling, humor, strategic thinking, etc.). I also stayed away from complex things that require a lengthy context setting to appreciate - so there's no UX work.

Obviously, there are a lot of pieces that aren't here. So if you're looking for something that you're not seeing, just ask.

Dove Soap (The first real Real-Women Campaign)

While at Ogilvy & Mather, I had the extraordinary opportunity to work as the Senior Writer on the Dove Soap account for the legendary, Vel Richie Rankin and the awesome Julie Newton Cucci. In that role, myself and my wonderful partner, Beth Kosuk, presented and sold Lever Brothers on their first ever unscripted documentary style testimonial Dove "Real Women" campaign. We reviewed hundreds of candidates. We picked thirty. We interviewed 9 on camera. Each one for 8 hours. Then we spent a month in LA cutting these spots. They did incredibly well. And the rest, well, the rest, is, as they say, history...


To those of us who've long loved photo-journalism, Nikon is to photography what Nike is to sports - what the pros use. With that in mind, this campaign almost wrote itself. Though I must admit, when you're working with some of the greatest photos ever taken, it sets a pretty high bar for your copy!

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Sperry Topsider

When I was first starting out, I had the amazing good fortune to work for one of the copywriting greats, the legendary Eric Haggman. On this campaign, Eric worked with me and really let me stretch my writing wings in what was the first time I ever got to work on something "big." Obviously of sentimental value, I also include it as an example of the power of great story-telling - something I really learned from Eric.

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Often the best tv spots are super simple - the equivalent of a moving print ad. Nowhere is this more true than when your client has about $10K to spend on production. Super fun to do and actually incredibly successful, I include these as I still think their simplicity and clarity of message makes them work hard.

The Irish Tourist Board (Borde Failte)

With a name like Liam Shannon, I wouldn't have had much of a career if I hadn't finagled a chance to work on the ol' country at some time. I did this campaign with another of my great partners, Todd Riddle. I include it here both because I love the way the tagline "The Ancient Birthplace of Good Times" captures so many aspects of the strategy. And also because, well, how often does one get to put ones entire name in a headline!

The Massachusetts Lottery

Not usually a very strategic account, the Lottery was still a fun account that allowed us to do some fun work. Over the years I did literally dozens of spots for them. My favorite here is the black and white one - it plays off the fact that a local cable station always runs old black and white movies on Friday nights. And always, towards the end, a type crawl comes on over the movie, telling the nights winning lottery numbers. 

we interrupt this page for a few radio announcements

Starting out under the ever-patient tutelage of the great radio copywriter, Bruce Patteson, I learned radio from the ground up. Since then, I've written and produced literally hundreds of radio spots and VOs. In that time, I've won numerous radio awards. And while sound work is never easy, it can be wonderful as it is truly a writers medium with great creative potential - one that podcast like "Serial" and "Radiolab," and "Freakonomics Radio" illustrate, still has real value to those wanting to create breakthrough content.

Celebrity Cruise Lines

After leaving Ogilvy & Mather, I put in a stint as the Creative Director for Celebrity Cruise Lines. While not my favorite account as it was too "executional" and really just about writing funny headlines, it did give me the chance to write a LOT of headlines. Here are a few of my favorites.

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Big ideas in simple print ads

Held together by only the fact that they were all as much fun to make as they are to encounter, I include these because each is an excellent example of using the medium given. Something that is applicable to every medium. And something I push in the Ad Club concepting classes I teach to this day.

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Tagamet (SmithKline Beecham)

This campaign, which introduced Tagamet to OTC sales and won the David Ogilvy Award (for being the most successful campaign in all O&M offices worldwide), represents both the best of my time at Ogilvy and the worst. The idea behind it was, I think, one of the most interesting I ever had - instead of marketing Tagamet as a product, create a documentary around the discovery of the drug behind it and market that. In fact, the client liked it so much that they doubled the budget from $50 million to nearly $100 million. Unfortunately, as it was for a drug, dealing with the FTC meant waiting on and on and the longer we had, the worse the campaign got. Oh well, I share it here if only for the opportunity to hopefully discuss the "real" idea behind it.

Dover Rug & Home

While running my own agency for almost ten years, I had the pleasure to work with both large clients and small. Working with Mahmud Jafri, the owner of Dover Rug was among my most favorite. Despite having a limited budget and doing the account mostly in trade (yes, I do have gorgeous rugs.), we managed to do some really nice work that I'd like to think contributed to the brand's exceptional growth. 

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Spalding Golf

Having made it this far, I thought you deserved a reward. And if you ask me, this spot is all that. Filmed in Florida using the fans of three swamp airboats that we staked to the ground, the wind on the tee was measured at 180 mph. The "golfer" is in fact a tumbler with the Big Apple Circus. And the bottoms of his "golf" shoes have no spikes and were sprayed with silicon. Enjoy! (Oh yes, and yes, the idea did come from the Charlie Chaplin skit.)