Dave Thomas' death is especially poignant for all of us in the marketing community. He embodied great qualities of leadership that we as marketers so admire-but rarely find-in one individual: integrity, humanity, passion and humor.
In bringing these qualities to the advertising discipline, Dave elevated our profession and publicly underscored the importance of brand building as a chairman-level activity. The long-running Wendy's campaign featuring him also demonstrated the very best in advertiser-agency relationships. It's an outstanding example of how collaboration and continuity can build a brand and yield superior business results.
Dave Thomas was a gentleman, a genius and a giant. We will never forget his participation in our an-nual conference in 2000, graciously accepting the All-American Adver-tiser Award and totally enchanting a room full of senior marketers. And, of course, we will always draw inspiration from his deep, personal commitment to adoption. We know the Wendy's organization will greatly miss him. And so will we.
John J. Sarsen Jr.
Association of National Advertisers
Lines are truly blurred
Scott Donaton's column regarding the "infomercializing" of the "Today" show (`"Today' show got off too easy; audience may decide its future," Viewpoint, AA, Dec. 10) is right on target. You can even take this viewpoint to the local news level with many TV stations teaming up with local marketers. The lines are truly blurred.
John Marks Associates Advertising
Please set the record straight about `Tony'
I write to you about the creation of Tony the Tiger. The information that Burnett [ Leo Burnett USA] gave you that Don Tennant "played a key role" in "creating" Tony the Tiger was incorrect ("Adman Tennant dies," AA, Dec. 17, '01). Those Burnett people that gave out that lead were probably just babies when I created Tony in 1952. ... Because I left Burnett about six months after I launched Tony, it opened the door for those that followed me to start to claim the credit. ...
Another way to look at this: I was the architect that did the creation and design. Tennant was the TV contractor that followed my plans to put up the building. Without Tony, some other kind of building would surely have been built but not a Tony building. A more honest statement should have read "that after Jack Tolzien created and launched the Tony the Tiger icon, Tennant worked on the Frosted Flakes account." I'm sure your readers out there understand how strongly I feel about others [being given] credit for our original work.
Editor's note: In letters to Ad Age, published in 1976 and 1985, Mr. Tolzien cited Ad Age articles that he said wrongly attributed the creation of the Tony icon to others. In his 1976 letter, he said Tony's creation should be credited to himself as art director, to Jack Baxter as creative director and to John Matthews as copywriter. He said artist Phoebe Moore drew the first Tony. In 1985, Mr. Tolzien sent Ad Age material that he said established that he created Tony. The information about Tony in the Don Tennant obituary was supplied by the Tennant family and by Burnett, which late last month said it is unable to shed further light on who should be credited with creation of the Tony icon.
Daniel E. Cohen taught more than advertising
My father always told me he was the world's best account guy. I believed this until I started working at one of his former agencies (McCann-Erickson) in 1991. I quickly learned the truth. My father, Daniel E. Cohen, was only a very good account guy. He wasn't quite the legend of Madison Avenue that I thought he was.
I did find out other things. A lot of people really liked my father. Not everyone, but most people. They said he was a nice man. They said he was a smart man. They spoke about his wit and his paternal warmth. People even said he was someone who taught them more than just advertising. I believe these are the things that family, friends, colleagues and even former clients will miss most about him.
On New Year's Eve, my father lost his battle with lung cancer at the age of 63. After graduating from Harvard, he held various senior positions in account management at Grey, Ted Bates, McCann, RS&L and Lowe Marschalk. After a 30-year run in the agency business, he then served as director of marketing for Price Waterhouse and as an independent marketing consultant.
In the end, I'm not sure where my father ranks with the great ad- men of his generation, but I'd like to think he had a pretty distinguished career. Regardless, he was a great father whose memory will always remind me there's more to life than advertising.
Associate Creative Director
* In "Trying to shake a dull rap" (Agency of the Year Special Report, Jan. 14, P. S-2), the Grey World-wide profile omitted mention of its December 2001 win of the $150 million BellSouth Corp. account.
* In "Nestle buys General Mills' Ice Cream Partners stake" (For the Record, Dec. 31, P. 26), Interpublic Group of Cos.' Foote, Cone & Belding Worldwide, San Francisco, was incorrectly identified as the agency for Haagen-Dazs. Wolf Group, New York, handles the brand though Nestle is talking to roster shops about the account.
* In "Consumer magazine advertising linage," (Dec. 10, P. 20), ad pages for Power & Motoryacht should have read 568.50 for third quarter 2001 and 1,963.25 for year to date. Ad pages for Golfweek are 139.7 for third quarter 2001 and 592.8 for year to date. AdAge.com QwikFIND: aan05v.