New Center at Howard University Aims to Develop Strategies to Increase Racial Diversity in the Advertising Industry

Howard University in conjunction with the American Association of Advertising Agencies (AAAA) has announced the establishment of a center based at Howard’s John H. Johnson School of Communications that will strive to increase racial diversity in the advertising work force.

The new center, which was the brainchild of Jannette L. Dates, dean of the Johnson School, and O. Burtch Drake, outgoing AAAA president and CEO, has outlined four missions and goals:

1. Provide professional development and leadership training for midlevel managers of color in all areas of advertising;

2. Conduct research and produce analysis to help the industry increase the racial diversity of its employees;

3. Benchmark best practices and solutions to guide agencies’ diversity efforts; and

4. Develop strategies for retention and promotion of minority employees.

The advertising agencies pledge financial support and help in developing curriculum for the center’s academic offerings.