Chase-ing the Dream

Most of us appreciate that one funny ad on T.V. that leaves us laughing, but that’s about it; we’re always ready to get back to our show.Nobody advertising, right?

Probably—but then there’s public relations Chase Donahue (pictured, right).

"Advertising seems to mold all of my interests, gifts, and desires into one field. My work thrives when I can be creative, strategic, and systematic."

In October, Donahue won a free pass to New York City for the advertising adventure of his life.

“I saw a contest on Advertising Week for five people to play a famous Creative Director in Words With Friends. I applied, won a chance to play him, and I actually beat him.”

At the annual conference  Donahue careened through 18 hour event-packed days with thousands of people, all of them on the go.

“I met some of the most influential decision-makers and a thinker of our culture, sat through hours of influential seminars, and was even offered an internship at a phenomenal advertising agency.”

More than a thrilling experience; Ad Week was a revelation.

“I learned that we can all change the world. That’s a big statement, but I wholeheartedly mean that,” he said, “When we take a minute to sit back and think about it, we are infinitely gifted and talented human beings. We are far too blessed to be mediocre with our abilities.”

With conviction that reached into his mind and spirit, Donahue returned home ready to confront broken realities with powerful ideas.

“Advertising at its best can challenge, inspire, and create something that has never been done…[it’s]the best place to work to have the opportunity to create new things and change the world with big ideas.”

Perhaps Donahue’s world-changer advertising approach isn’t so uncommon, especially in a generation that is constantly shouting its need for meaning and purpose. And yet, he acknowledged that the weight of that need does not fall on human shoulders.

“Our ability to make a positive change is not because we are that good, but because God is that great.”

Dream a Big Dream: Chase's blog debut on AWSC

The transformation that started in New York is showing true in Donahue's life months later.Chase started meeting with professors on campus for encouragement, but that's just the start.

Hoping to incite passion in peers and help people leave mediocrity behind, Donahue has a message to get out and an dream up his sleeve.  He just wrote his first post, Dream a Big Dream With Me for the Advertising Week Social Club's blog and we've got his best pointers for you:

  • From birth we’ve been dreamers – somewhere along the line as we grow up, that fervor is quenched.
  • We don’t consciously choose to give up our gifts and dreams to be ordinary – it’s just the societal norm.
  • Pursuing our dreams is terrifying, and rightfully so – if we have truly dreamt large enough. But it’s not about whether or not you’re a risk-taker; it’s about the life that you want to live.
  • Our goal is to uncover work and life that is rewarding, exciting, and fruitful
  • Our potential is not something that we should wish we had attained in life – it is something that we should surpass daily.
  • Stop saying, “I’ll start tomorrow.” Our future is determined by what we do today – not in a week.

Donahue is taking his own advice, getting started with his dreams using Innove Project.  Talk with Chase on Twitter @ChaseDonahue about your dream!

As Chase says, "We are all equipped to change the world; it’s time that we do."

Chase's Advice for You

  • Relax and enjoy what you do.
  • Joy and an honest smile make your work quality better.
  • Make your presence known; don’t be afraid to let important people know you exist.
  • Be passionate about life.


Advertising Week Social Club (AWSC) 

This new site is being groomed as the largest source for advertising industry news and information,with a vision  to reach 1 million viewers. By November, the site had already surpassed 630,000 readers.

Read Chase's first AWSC blog


Do you love PR?

Chase's program of choice: Public Relations at Northwestern



A Little Courage

On the day that I was introduced to advertising, I Googled “largest advertising agencies in Minnesota”. Fallon was near the top. Ignorant—yet enthusiastic—I called asking to speak with Pat Fallon.

Sure, I was laughed at. And they hung up on me. Twice. But that didn’t stop me.

And my “plan” paid off: four days later I was standing on the 24th floor of the AT&T Building overlooking Minneapolis in Fallon’s lobby.

It was the first of many informational interviews and the onset of my learning about this oceanic industry from a Senior Account Director. (Excerpt from Chase's blog)