AdColor's Call to Arms Raises a Question: Where's Cyrus Mehri's Race Lawsuit?

Last Updated Oct 7, 2009 1:55 PM EDT

AdColor's call to arms in Ad Age -- which urges "changing the paradigm" (sigh) to increase ad agency diversity -- has a couple of problems.

First, as noted by several commenters under the op-ed, it was written by two white people, ANA CEO Bob Liodice and AAAA CEO Nancy Hill (pictured). Not that there's anything wrong with that -- but there's nothing helpful about it either.

Second, if you want to join AdColor's fight for minority promotion and recruitment, here are the fees:

  • The annual membership dues are $5,000.
  • Personal membership dues are $200.
Third, in the wake of Cyrus Mehri's attempt to recruit plaintiffs for a class-action race discrimination lawsuit against Madison Avenue, AdColor's drive sounds a bit like an attempt to lay down some evidence that the agency business isn't racist. AdColor:
The current dialogue around diversity is highly charged, which creates a challenging environment for changing the paradigm. To increase diversity within the marketing profession, we must have a more constructive, positive dialogue.
One commented, Derek Walker, said:
Seriously why do we need a army, its not about the army of people, its about white agencies/GM agencies who realize that they have ran out of excuses and also realize that in order to avoid lawsuits and avoid being labeled as closet racists they must continue to create more smoke and mirrors, by creating more meaningless organizations and diversity jargon to draw attention away from that there's no way u can "retain diverse individuals" without hiring diverse individuals first.
Which reminds me: That Mehri lawsuit remains conspicuous by its absence.