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A Lasting Impact

Howard has been named:

  • Number 35 on CNN Money’s “The 50 Who Matter Now” list (2007)

  • Jury President for the Direct Lions at the International Advertising Festival in Cannes (2007)

  • Keynote Speaker at Northwestern University’s commencement ceremony (2008)

  • Chicago Ad Federation Silver Medal Lifetime Achievement Award Winner (2010)

  • DMA Hall of Fame Inductee (2010)

  • Mac Dane Award for Humanitarian Excellence Winner (2010)

  • First-ever honorary chairman of the ROI Festival in China (2010)


Alongside his reputation as an industry leader, Howard is a family man. He is a father to six and grandfather to six more. 


He has become known as a philanthropist in his local Chicago community. He is best known for his work with Chicago’s After School Matters, PAWS Chicago, and Pediatric AIDS Chicago. 


Today, Howard continues to partner with his local nonprofits in his community. He also serves on the Board of Directors of AudioUp and is an advisor to Torch Capital. Until recently, he served on the board of Peloton,
Emisphere (acquired by Novo Nordisk) and Options Express Holdings (acquired by Charles Schwab).”

An Industry Leader

Under Howard’s direction, Draft became one of the largest independent agencies specializing in direct marketing. Draft guided blue-chip clients (including Bank of America, HBO, Fidelity, Verizon, and American Express) through multiple marketing revolutions. And it was an early-stage investor in Facebook in 2006. 


In 1996, Interpublic group acquired Draft. In 2006, Draft merged with Foote, Cone & Belding (FCB) to create Draftfcb, a leading fully integrated advertising network. These moves created a workforce of over 8,000 employees and 100+ offices worldwide.


Howard oversaw the total operations of the agency including the work on brands such as Kraft (Oreo), Yum (Taco Bell & KFC) as well as Nivea Worldwide. After serving in the role of Chairman & CEO of DraftFCB he retired in 2014.

Today, Howard is the co-founder and CEO of Vysical, a marketing agency that bridges the gap between the virtual and physical worlds. 

About Howard Draft.

Modern advertising marries behavioral research, analytics, and data mining. Howard Draft has built a 40+ year career doing all three.


Howard launched his career as an account executive at a 13-person direct marketing agency in Chicago. That was 1978. 


By 1988, he had worked his way up to Chairman and CEO, where he would rebrand the agency as Draft Direct Worldwide.

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