ELITE 2022 Disrupter Walt Geer of VMLY&R HEALTH

Walt Geer

Chief Experience Design Officer

VMLY&R HEALTH

Advocating for BIPOC Advertising Professionals

Known for his high-level creative work and his tenacious advocacy for the advancement of BIPOC advertising professionals, Walter Geer III is characterized by his commitment to creative and cultural development within and beyond adland. Throughout his auspicious 20-year career, Walt has architected market-first usability labs, applying biometric research to the development of creative executions and minimizing risk through his robust understanding of how consumer emotions and demographics impact brand engagement.

As Chief Experience Design Officer, Walt drives the creation of innovative solutions within VMLY&R’s connected health practice, as well as the transformation of talent and capability across the high-growth group. Over the course of his career, Walt has been awarded a total of six U.S. patents for digital ad formats and has developed ad products and implemented creative strategies for a variety of publishers and leading technology and media companies including Google, Viacom, New York Times, and MySpace.

His award-winning work and tangible impact across the industry have earned him positions on the board of the 4A’s and on the executive board of the AD Club of New York. Through these roles, Walter openly challenges the status quo and advocates for a more diverse and equitable industry.

In 2020, Walter partnered with a colleague to launch Diverse Creatives, a free online hub for agencies and recruiters to search for and connect with Black and Brown creatives. A valuable resource, the Diverse Creatives database (diversecreatives.com) now features over 2,700 creatives and grows daily.

After realizing that there may be fewer than 10 Black Executive Creative Directors (ECDs) in a sea of more than 358,000 employees across the top five holding agencies in the U.S., Walter collaborated with New York Film Festival to produce “Black Madison Avenue.” This three-part documentary featured seven of the Black ECDs exploring the current state of the advertising industry. You can watch the documentary, by visiting https://home.nyfadvertising.com/black-madison-ave.

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