HOW AD AGENCY STAFFS COMMEMORATED SEPT. 11

J. Walter Thompson Publishes Firehouse Photo Book

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NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- As they came to grips with Wednesday's one-year anniversary of the Sept. 11 horror, advertising
Photos: Geralyn Shukwit
Images from the Geralyn Shukwit commemorative book published by J.W. Thompson.
agency employees, like many other Americans, sought their own special way to mark the day.

Staff members of Grey Global Group companies collaborated in the creation of a color-chalk drawing in front of the company's headquarters at 777 Third Ave. in New York. Led by street artist Wanda Ortiz, who created a centerpiece image, Grey employees left messages from "Let there be world peace and let it start with me" to "I love New York more than ever."

Firehouse book
J. Walter Thompson, a WPP group agency, took a different approach. "We struggled with how J. Walter Thompson, as a company, should commemorate 9/11 [and] we finally decided to share ... one individual's response to what Rudy Giuliani called 'the worst day in New York's history,' " said Bob Jeffrey, president of JWT North America.

Mr. Jeffrey and others at JWT opted to publish photographs of firehouse memorials shot by agency designer Geralyn Shukwit.

Last fall, while standing on the Brooklyn Bridge, she watched the South Tower collapse. As a result, photography became her emotional outlet. For weeks Ms. Shukwit trekked New York, taking photographs of every firehouse that had lost a man. The pictures are collected in a book, What I had to do: Firehouse photographs Sept. 2001-October 2001, published through contributions from JWT. Barton Press contributed pre-press and printing services and paper.

On Sept. 9, JWT New York employees toasted the book's creation at the agency's offices at 466 Lexington Ave.

Volunteer day
Other agencies instituted Sept. 11 traditions. WPP's Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide, New York, for instance, has long allowed employees to contribute one work day per year to community efforts like volunteering at a soup kitchen or tutoring a child. Starting this year, Sept. 11 is Ogilvy's official volunteer day.

Other agencies opted to honor the memories of one year ago with silence. Staff of Interpublic Group of Cos.' Deutsch gathered at 10 a.m. on a balcony off the shop's 14th floor office.

Led by agency chief Donny Deutsch, the group shared a quiet moment together.

"After all this, what more can be said?" said Deutsch spokeswoman Lynne Collins.

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