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Advertising Improves Lives! Thanks to Work We Do With the Ad Council

By Jennifer Maroney, director, user experience, New York
It was an honor and a pleasure to join my colleagues in attending the Ad Council’s 59th Annual Public Service award dinner on November 14th. The dinner honored Randall Stephenson, chairman & CEO of AT&T. His company’s powerful campaign against texting and driving, "Texting Can Wait," has changed teen driving behaviors. For Stephenson, it was a personal passion, since someone he knew had caused an accident while texting and driving.

The evening was hosted by Conan O'Brien, whose comparisons of ad folks to celebrities cracked everyone up (and now I can’t look at a picture of P&G’s global brand-building officer, Marc Pritchard, without thinking of Keith Richards). Peggy Conlon, president and CEO of the Ad Council, talked about how their campaigns have influenced a call-to-action with the general public. For example, the campaign on the early signs of autism led one mom to have her child tested. Through early intervention, he is now thriving.
We viewed some amazing and inspiring Ad Council work. Some of the standouts were theAdopt U.S. Kids campaign, with its message that you don’t have to be perfect to be a parent. This one really resonated with me (and the commercials made me laugh). I also found theDiscover Nature campaign and theFire Adapted Communities campaign, made by our very own, Draftfcb Irvine, very impactful.

The dinner was held at the Waldorf Astoria, and leaders from top media companies and creative agencies were present.  The Ad Council is a non-profit that has been delivering life-changing messages to the American public for 70 years.  It was truly an unforgettable night spent in beautiful art deco surroundings.