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Howie Cohen

(Retired) CCO, Phelps

Howie Cohen began his career in 1965 as the youngest copy trainee at the legendary creative agency, Doyle Dane Bernbach. He literally learned to write copy on the famous VW Bug campaign. He then moved to Wells, Rich, Greene at the height of its glory days. In her autobiography, "A Big Life in Advertising," Mary Wells referred to Howie as "One of the most creative people we ever had at the agency." It was there that he wrote the famous Alka Seltzer commercials, "Try it, you’ll like it" and "I can’t believe I ate the whole thing"- both in the Clio Hall of Fame. In 1985, Howie co-founded the Cohen/Johnson advertising agency which grew to $75 million in billings with blue-chip clients including Nestle, Jack in the Box, Mervyn's, Bally's and PETCO. In 1997, the agency was acquired by Phelps and Howie joined as partner and Chief Creative Officer. In 2012, Howie was one of five icons tapped by Google to re-imagine "I Can’t Believe I Ate The Whole Thing" for the Internet. The work and a documentary about it can be seen at www.projectrebrief.com. Howie recently retired after a highly satisfying 52-year career.

How to have a killer career without killing yourself
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How to have a killer career without killing yourself

Advertising is worth getting up for in the morning. But it's not worth dying for--even a little bit at a time, writes the retired CCO of Phelps.