The Life and Work of Tom Burrell
The ad exec who revolutionized the image of Black Americans in advertising
Cloth – $110
Paper – $24.95
eBook – $14.95
About the BookOver a forty-year career, Chicagoan Tom Burrell changed the face of advertising and revolutionized the industry’s approach to African Americans as human beings and consumers. Jason P. Chambers offers a biography of the groundbreaking creator and entrepreneur that explores Burrell’s role in building brands like McDonald’s and Coca-Cola within a deeply felt vision of folding positive images of Black people into mainstream American life. While detailing Burrell’s successes, Chambers tells a parallel story of what Burrell tried to do that sheds light on the motivations of advertising creators who viewed their work as being about more than just selling. Chambers also highlights how Burrell used his entrepreneurial gifts to build an agency that opened the door for Black artists, copywriters, directors, and other professionals to earn livings, build careers, and become leaders within the industry.
Compelling and multidimensional, Advertising Revolutionary combines archival research and interviews with Burrell and his colleagues to provide a long overdue portrait of an advertising industry legend and his times.
About the AuthorJason P. Chambers is an associate professor of advertising at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He is the author of Madison Avenue and the Color Line: African Americans in the Advertising Industry and coeditor of Building the Black Metropolis: African American Entrepreneurship in Chicago.
“Jason P. Chambers’ thoughtful and thorough biography of Tom Burrell makes an important contribution to African American business history."--Robert E. Weems, Jr., author of The Merchant Prince of Black Chicago: Anthony Overton and the Building of a Financial Empire