Hamilton Bids Adieu

NEW YORK-After more than 30 years in advertising, Bill Hamilton has called it a career, according to J. Walter Thompson, where he has worked since 1998.

Hamilton, one of about a dozen worldwide creative directors at JWT, retired this summer to spend time in Colorado. Still, he remains available to the New York shop as a consultant on “special projects,” an agency representative said. Hamilton, who requested a quiet departure, could not be reached.

“He always challenged conventional thinking to create smart, elegant advertising that got results,” said Peter Schweitzer, worldwide CEO at JWT. “His courage and relentlessly high standards set him apart.”

Said former boss Jay Chiat last week: “He’s a very talented guy, and I wish him the best.”

Hamilton will not be replaced, said the JWT representative.

At JWT, Hamilton, a writer with a direct, no-nonsense mien, worked on Merrill Lynch and Sun Microsystems. Before that, he spent eight years as evp/creative head at Ogilvy & Mather, here.

His career began in Cleveland (at Marschalk) and included stops in Chicago (N.W. Ayer & Partners) and Los Angeles (Chiat/Day). In 1986, he became creative chief at Chiat/Day’s New York office. “He had the taste-and the balls-to know when to take a chance,” said Marty Weiss, then an associate cd at Chiat/Day.

Case in point: the shop’s “Human Cartoons” campaign for the former Nynex Yellow Pages, which used visual puns to illustrate actual listings, such as “Rock Drills” and “Furniture Stripping.” Hamilton was cd on that effort, which ran from 1987-91.