Ad Age has learned that Mr. Barrett is wrapping things up at Goodby over the next few weeks and then shortly after will be launching his own shop in the Bay Area. His responsibilities at the agency will be absorbed by other staff, and in an internal note, Jeff Goodby, co-founder of the agency, said the departure is amicable and the shop hopes to work with him in the future.
Mr. Barrett got his start at Fallon in Minneapolis in the '80s. He then spent eight years at Wieden & Kennedy, much of it devoted to working on the Nike business, including some of the legendary Michael Jordan work. After a return to Fallon to work at the short-lived New York office, he moved to GS&P, where he has worked on a range of accounts such as Comcast, Quaker, Doritos, Cheetos and the NBA.
In 2006, he was named one of the top 50 creatives in the business by Ad Age sibling Creativity. You can see much of his work over the years here.
Here's the memo that GS&P co-founder Jeff Goodby sent to staff this evening to announce Mr. Barrett's departure:
With regret and incandescent best wishes, we must announce today that Jamie Barrett is leaving us to start his own company, somewhere in San Francisco. We are happy for him, of course, because this company started one day with a similar leaving. We know how scary/liberating/appalling/delicious it can be. We are also happy because it is all very amicable. We will stay close to Jamie's venture, and probably even share some projects together.
We wish him very much luck and plan to help in any ways we can. (He will tell you more about it all.) In the bigger picture, Jamie was of course a powerful spirit and creative force in his years here. From Saturn to the NBA to Comcast to eBay, he relentlessly did things others did not do, taking chances, cajoling clients, always being intelligent and funny even if he wasn't in real life. He brought us all a lot of notoriety and fame, and helped make this place a destination for the best people. He brought us all up, and we will miss that. He leaves, however, at a time of great fortune here -- fortune that Jamie himself helped create. We have just had an amazing run of new business -- we've expanded our relationship with Comcast, Google and Frito Lay. We've been awarded work for Nature's Way and Elizabeth Arden's Britney Spears fragrances. We have a long-term, signed contract with Chevy now.
And finally, there are a couple of exciting assignments we can't even talk about yet. It is a chance for new voices to be heard, for people to shine in new ways and in new media. Every person who comes and goes here makes a difference, as we are fond of saying. Jamie will be missed, but it will be a chance for others to shine. The Big Guy will be around for a few weeks, finishing projects and testing socks. Please join us in congratulating him, celebrating the excitement of his new enterprise, and making sure that he leaves the building in an expeditious manner with his timesheets up to date.