Faculty Experts

Mel White

Assistant Professor of Advertising

TIMELY TOPICS: Ad Industry Gender Diversity, Advertising Industry Sexism

Mel White is an expert in creative visual advertising and gender diversity in advertising agency creative departments – for the former, White has most recently investigated in a paper and conference presentation titled “Tracing the Emergence and Dominance of Visual Solution Advertising: A Preliminary Study”. For the latter, White has partnered with fellow Newhouse Assistant Professor, Rebecca Ortiz, for a mixed-methods study that will entail the compiling and analysis of personnel data from dozens of NYC advertising agencies and performing semi-structured interviews with a cross-section of creative department staff at a few NYC agencies. The study seeks to investigate a commonly quoted statistic that the creative leadership at ad agencies is, on average, 11% women and 89% men, while also exploring the factors and obstacles that women creatives report that make it difficult or nearly impossible for them to obtain creative leadership positions at advertising agencies.

Before being recruited to teach Creative Advertising at Newhouse, White spent more than 25 years in advertising – 17 of these years as a veteran of the New York City advertising scene where she worked as a creative director/art director at top agencies such as Young & Rubicam, Ogilvy, Grey, Publicis and D’Arcy.

She has worked on a range of accounts from packaged goods to technology on many high-profile brands such as Microsoft, Land Rover, MINI Cooper, Crest, Dannon, American Express, Lea & Perrins, Miller, Xerox, Dell, Sony, Bounty, Green Mountain Coffee, Hillshire Farm, Old El Paso, Cellular South, Sleep Number, Fisher-Price, Capitol One, Always, Pillsbury, Swiffer, UNCF and Search Dog Foundation. She has big pitch experience for national brands such as Famous Footwear, Sleep Number, Ameriprise Financial, Transitions Lenses and Earthlink and has been instrumental in winning pitches for new accounts—most notably at Young & Rubicam and Ogilvy.

Related Stories and Coverage

Media, Law & Policy
Newhouse Advertising Professors White, O’Neill Honored by Graphis for Creating Award-Winning Students
Monday, April 24, 2017, By Wendy S. Loughlin

Leading ad agencies attend first Newhouse NYC Advertising Portfolio Review
Monday, May 8, 2017, By Wendy S. Loughlin

Advertising 2017 Abstracts – “Tracing the Emergence and Dominance of Visual Solution Advertising: A Preliminary Study”

Walrus’ Co-founder & CCO Deacon Webster Delivers Newhouse’s Eric Mower Advertising Forum Lecture
April 11, 2017, By Walrus

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