Joe Alexander
Joe color.JPG

30 years is a long time in this crazy business.

Or is it?

I feel like I’m a kid, although my hairline would disagree. So much still to learn, to do, to explore, to fail at and try again.

I am a copywriter by trade. That's what I did when I started in Minneapolis in the late 80s. I moved to Chiat/Day for a couple years and then the late Mike Hughes rescued me. I was at The Martin Agency for 26 years.

In 2012, Mike asked me to become CCO. Since then, the agency went through a creative renaissance, attracting world-class creative talent and winning many awards, especially for "weird shaped objects" like moon landings, green paint and hungry dogs.

What people would say I’m good at: writing, finding a voice, working with teams, getting the most out of a brief, instilling clients with confidence, mentoring young and old, juggling multiple projects at once, having a keen eye for craft.

What they would say I suck at: being cynical, keynote, time sheets.

Finally, my family. I was raised by a schoolteacher and homemaker in St. Paul, right in the middle of 3 sisters and 6 brothers. It has left an indelible mark on me in many ways, giving me a deep reservoir of perseverance, hard work, patience and good old Catholic guilt.

My greatest accomplishment? Easy. Raising three smart, confident and compassionate daughters.



Rose to #2 car insurance brand.

Donate Life
Increased donor base by 600%.

Global sales rose by 12%.

Sales increased for the first time in 2 years.

Over 1.4 million flew to the moon.

Brand likability jumped 40%.

The number 1 driver in golf.

Second most popular car brand.


Over 200 finalists in The One Show, Career

21 D&AD pencils, including 6 yellow, Career

60 Cannes Lions, including Film Grand Prix, Career

Adweek Agency of the Year,  2008

FWA Site of the Year,  2009

Emmy for Clouds over Cuba, 2013

Ad Age Top 50 Creative People,  2015

Adweek Campaign of the Year,  2015

One Club Agency of the Year,  2016

Shoot Agency of the Year,  2016

Creativity Innovators List,  2014 - 2017

Grand Clio Film, Donate Life,  2017


1983 - 1984
Dayton’s, Minneapolis

Campbell-Mithun, Minneapolis

1986 - 1989
Clarity Cloverdale, Minneapolis

1989 - 1991
Creative Director
Chiat/Day, Toronto

1992 - 2017
Copywriter / CD / ECD / CCO
The Martin Agency, Richmond