EventsPress Release

The One Club’s WAATBP diversity conference and career fair set for September 26 to 27

NEW YORK, USA  The One Club for Creativity has announced its annual Where Are All The Black People (WAATBP) diversity conference and career fair, which will take place from September 26 to 27 in New York.

Now in its 14th year, WAATBP is the leading annual gathering to address and correct the lack of diversity within the ad industry, bringing together Black voices from across the ad community, from students to C-suite leaders, to celebrate successes, examine challenges, and assert their rightful place at the table alongside their allies. 

The conference is a hybrid event, with the first day taking place online and the second in person at Convene at Brookfield Place, 225 Liberty St. in downtown New York.  


To make the event as accessible as possible, WAATBP is free for job seekers and students to attend. Partnership opportunities are available for agencies and brands looking to help promote industry diversity. 

“GUT is proud to sponsor  ‘Where Are All The Black People,’ and we’ll keep doing so,” said Anselmo Ramos, Co-founder and Creative Chairman of GUT, and a member of The One Club Board.  “Since day one, our mission has been to become one of the most diverse, creative, and influential agencies in the world.  We believe the more diverse you are, the more creative you’re going to be.  And the more creative you are, the more influential you’re going to be. It all starts with diversity.”

While other industry DEI events are confined to addressing topics from the stage, WAATBP stands apart by also providing one-on-one portfolio reviews by top agency creatives, and recruiting opportunities for mid-level creatives who want to advance their careers, as well as students looking to break into the industry.   

On September 26, virtual panels, portfolio reviews, and recruiting sessions will be held online. The next day, a special keynote speaker will be announced shortly, followed by additional presentations, panels, recruiting booths, and portfolio reviews. Other programming elements, including kickoff events and crowdsourced panel selection, will also be announced shortly. 

WAATBP grew out of a conversation more than a dozen years ago between One Club Board members Jimmy Smith, Chairman/CEO/CCO of Amusement Park Entertainment, and Jeff Goodby, Chairman of Goodby Silverstein & Partners, about the critical need to create job opportunities in advertising and design for minority students. The pair spearheaded the initiative for the organization, which held the first WAATBP panel on diversity during The One Club’s Creative Week 2011.

“We support ‘Where Are All the Black People’ each year because we’re committed to ensuring that efforts that have proven themselves to be meaningful gateways to the industry remain vibrant and able to do the work the industry has committed to doing,” added Chandra Guinn, Executive Director, Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging at McKinney. “We’ve had success in sourcing talent during the career fair and found insights and inspiration by attending the sessions. The keynotes have been fire! Connecting with industry veterans and newbies is life-giving, and we are grateful for that.”

The One Club has a long track record of creating ongoing programs that address the ad industry’s lack of diversity. These include global Creative Boot Camps and mentorship programs for diverse college students and other young creatives; ONE School, the groundbreaking free portfolio program for Black creatives in the US and UK; and ONE Creator Lab, a free training program to bring diverse creators into the industry.

Other DEI initiatives from The One Club include the Behind the Stonewall Riots competition in partnership with WPPWE ARE ONE poster design initiative; the Young Guns COLORFUL and TDC Ascenders global grant programs for young BIPOC creatives, the Paid Internship Pledge to help aspiring BIPOC creatives get a foot in the door at agencies; The One Show Fusion Pencil and ADC Annual Awards Fusion Cube, the industry’s first global awards to recognize great work that best incorporates DEI principles in both creative content and the team that made it, and more.

WAATBP branding was developed by Nicole Cousins and Dante Carlos at COLLINS New York.

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