Diane Straus Tucker

photoDiane Straus Tucker is the publisher of the Washington Monthly. She joined the Monthly in 2008. For nearly two decades, Diane has worked on the business side of publishing, serving as publisher of The American Prospect; Group Publisher of Manhattan Media, which publishes several weekly community newspapers in Manhattan as well as Avenue magazine; Publisher of the Westchester and Fairfield County Times; and of Trader Publications. Before migrating to the business side, she was an editor at The Village Voice and New York Magazine.

Tucker grew up in New York and Washington, where her family was active in liberal politics and radio. She attended Yale University in the first class to admit women. At Yale, she established the first women's varsity tennis team. Tucker recently served as Chair of the Board of Yale Alumni Magazine.

Tucker has won forteen national women's platform tennis championships. The mother of three grown children, she resides in Washington, DC.

 

Carol H. Williams

photo“Strong Enough for a man, but made for a woman.”

Yes, it was South-side Chicago native Carol Henny Williams who coined this well-known phrase for Secret deodorant while a copywriter for Leo Burnett Company and still in school at Northwestern. The Secret brand was trailing the leading antiperspirant brands and Williams’ phrase triggered one of the most successful brand turnarounds in ad history. In Williams' more than 30 years of advertising experience, she has developed some of the most memorable brand-building campaigns in addition to the Secret Antiperspirant campaign: the highly successful "Paper Knife" campaign for Pillsbury frosting; and the "Say Hello to Poppin' Fresh Dough" campaign for Pillsbury. 

Williams was the first African American female creative director and in less than seven years became the first African American vice president at Leo Burnett. After serving Leo Burnett for 13 years headed west to serve as a senior vice-president/creative director at Foote, Cone & Belding in San Francisco. Williams learned the benefits of having mentors. In addition to her family, she sought advice from people in the White, male-dominated advertising industry who recognized her talent and intelligence--men like Charlie Blakemore, the creative director she was working for when she created the campaign for Secret deodorant that guaranteed her a place in the big league.

After marrying Tipkins Hood, an orthopedic surgeon, Williams quit her job to devote more time to her husband and two children. She immersed herself in marriage and motherhood for the bulk of the mid 80’s until a trip to Ghana that had an inspirational impact on her. 

Williams was lured back into advertising in the mid-1980's as many of her former clients kept asking her to work on various projects. But this time she went out on her own, starting with $40,000 in savings and working from her home. Williams founded Carol H. Williams Advertising in 1986 after recognizing the need to communicate respectfully and successfully to African American and urban markets with targeted strategic communications. CHWA (www.carolhwilliams.com) is the largest independent advertising agency in the country that is 100% minority- and woman-owned. Founded in 1986, CHWA has offices in Oakland, California, Chicago, and New York.

CHWA serves the needs of all advertisers, but specializes in developing integrated strategic marketing plans and innovative advertising for the African American and urban markets The agency's current and past clients are top Fortune 500 firms and industry leading companies including General Motors, General Mills, HP, Nationwide Insurance, Coors Brewing Co./Coors Light, Procter & Gamble, Cingular Wireless, Washington Mutual, VISA, Starwood, Disney, Coke, US Army, Nissan, Pac Bell, Colgate Palmolive, Luster Products, McNeil Pharmaceuticals, FX Network, Universal Studios Home Entertainment, The Disney Channel, Cingular Wireless, PacBell and SBC. In 2008, Advertising Age reported that CHWA developed the No. 1-rated TV commercial for the previous year among all general consumers. In April 2009, Black Television News Channel (BTNC), which is scheduled to launch the nation's only African American news network in 2010, announced a long-term partnership with Carol H. Williams Advertising. CHWA will be a minority stakeholder in the new network, and will exclusively handle BTNC's advertising, marketing and PR services.

Among her numerous achievements, Williams' creative work for the California Department of Health Services significantly reduced smoking rates among African-Americans. Williams' community involvement includes working with the Congressional Black Caucus, NAACP, Madison Avenue Project, U.S. Dream Academy and Rainbow/PUSH Coalition, among others. 

Through all the successes, Williams still faces roadblocks at times. "Unfortunately, not everyone sings your praises, and some will decide you don't deserve to be in business," Williams says. But she has learned to handle the challenges. "When the door opens, you've got to move through it!" she says. "Bust it down if necessary!"

 

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