African American Ad Mogul Tom Burrell, Receives McDonald’s 365Black Award

Tom Burrell, founder and chairman emeritus of one of the nation’s leading African-American-owned full-service communications agencies, has received the prestigious McDonald’s(R) 365 Black(TM) Award. Developed in 2003, McDonald’s 365Black Awards are part of the company’s 365Black initiative, which recognizes the contributions and accomplishments of African-Americans year-round.

Burrell received the honor Sept. 17, at McDonald’s Second Annual 365Black Awards Gala: An Evening of Legends & Legacies. McDonald’s 365Black Awards also went to McDonald’s owner/operator Reggie Webb and Reverend Jesse L. Jackson Sr.

“Burrell is the agency it is today because of McDonald’s and other companies that had the foresight to see the value of target marketing long before it became trendy,” Tom Burrell said. “McDonald’s took the lead, and other progressive companies followed.”

Burrell’s advertising career began with a copywriter position with Wade Advertising. He moved to Leo Burnett, Foote Cone & Belding in London, and Needham Harper & Steers before starting his own agency in 1971. Mr. Burrell has received numerous awards, including the Albert Lasker Award for Lifetime Achievement in Advertising, University of Missouri School of Journalism Medal for Distinguished Service and Public Relations Society of America Silver Anvil.

“It’s always an honor to recognize and show appreciation to those who have been so instrumental in shaping American history around the world and within the McDonald’s family,” said Mike Roberts, Chief Executive Officer, McDonald’s USA. “McDonald’s is committed to communicating the pride, achievement and heritage of the African-American communities we have been so privileged to serve for many years.”

Today, Burrell is a full-service marketing communications company with offices in Chicago and Atlanta. In business for more than 30 years, Burrell is a leader in understanding and motivating consumer behavior in the African- American and Yurban(R) markets. The agency’s client roster includes McDonald’s, P&G, Toyota, General Mills, Verizon, Sears, Marriott, and others. For more information, visit

Kelly Williams, 312-297-9716

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