Stan Richards goes down in Dallas advertising firm name over ‘too black’ comment

Stan Richards is stepping out of the Dallas Advertising and Marketing Agency after his racially sensitive comments about a proposed motel ad ad campaign idea were dropped within a week of the scandal and business partnership.

Richards, who will turn 88 on November 8, announced on Thursday afternoon that the company’s 650 employees would be moved by Zoom, hoping to stop the bleeding as Motel 6, Home Depot, Keurig Dr Murray and HBA sever ties with the Richards Group. The last two days. The motto that led Richards’ company to become the country’s largest independent proprietary agency in 1986 was Motel 2’s iconic “We’ll Leave the Light for You”.

In an interview with Dallas Morning News, Richards said the exodus is understandable. He said if the Richards Group had been a public company it would have been fired from now on.

“I’m leaving the agency,” he said.

Controversy erupted this week over Richards’ description of the concept of a Motel 6 campaign being “too black” for the “white supremacist component” of the Carolton-based motel chain. His comments came during the agency’s internal meeting on the idea of ​​celebrating black artists in the Motel 6 campaign. The motel operator severed ties with Richards’ pay firm shortly after his comments were made public.

On Wednesday, he apologized for using words that hurt me so much, three of which I never had to say: ‘He’s too black.’

Stan Richards, founder of The Richards Group, a Dallas-based advertising agency.

Said Richards News He transferred ownership of the company to a nonprofit about eight months ago that he would not recognize. He said the nonprofit is bound by the agreement not to interfere in the agency’s operations. He first discussed the idea in 2015 as part of his exit strategy.

Richards said he had “no role in the company” starting Thursday and that his successor, Glenn Daddy, would oversee operations.

Richards described the company as having a “fiercely independent” mindset.

Stan Richards, founder of the Richards Group, meets with the Dallas Morning News on Thursday, October 15, 2020 at his Dallas office fee.  (Tom Fox / Dal Dal Las Morning News)
Stan Richards, founder of the Richards Group, meets with the Dallas Morning News on Thursday, October 15, 2020 at his Dallas office fee. (Tom Fox / Dal Dal Las Morning News) (Tom Fox / Staff Photographer)

But in December 2019, Richards gave the company’s 40-year-old veteran daily control to his handpicked successor, Daddy. But Richards said he has considered getting involved and has never been seen retiring.

Despite his age, Richards once famously said that he would “keep working until I was bad.”

The list of his honors is from his tenure. In 2017, he was inducted into the Advertising Hall of Fame of the American Advertising Federation. In 2014, the University of Texas named its School of Advertising and Public Relations after him – Richards called it “the greatest honor he has ever had in his long, working life.”

This week, the university said it would like to speak directly to Richards about his comment and that it would be best for faculty, staff and students to “respond in a way that is consistent with our values.” She plans to hear concerns about it before then.

Said Richards News His focus in the near future will be on his relationship with the University of Texas.

“I will focus a lot of my time on that school, so it will help to do as good as it can to attract the best students.”

He said the university’s public relations school wanted to take his name, which Richards was most proud of, he said.

Richards moved to Dallas in the early 1950s after graduating from the Pratt Institute in New York. He briefly worked for the agency, then did freelance graphic design work and eventually grew his business into a full-fledged marketing agency.

In 2016, when Chick-fil-A left his agency after a 22-year run, Richards described it as an emotional blow rather than a financial toll. His team dreamed of the “Eat More Chicken” cow campaign in 1995 and is considered one of the most famous in fast-food history.

The Richards Group has also campaigned for hundreds of brands over the decades, including Go Irving, Biltmore Estate, NatureSweet Tomatoes, Sub Zero, Wolf, Jeep, Ram and Alfa Romeo.

The Richards Group’s revenue in 2019 was about $ 200 million.

Now, with each passing day more customers leaving the agency, Richards admits the company will have to make cuts.

“The company has to get smaller. There is no question about that, as a significant portion of our income is gone. And so we have to adjust its dimensions, ”said Richard.

Stan Richards, founder of advertising agency The Richards Group, speaks to the Dallas Morning News on Friday, July 22, 2016 at the company's Dallas offices fee.  Chick-File-A had a 22-year relationship with the Richards group.  The rocking cow was given to Richards by Chrug-File-A founder Truet Kathy.  (Andy Jacobson / Dallas Morning News)
Sign in Times Square congratulates Dallas advertising icon Stan Richards for being inducted into the American Advertising Federation's Hall of Fame on April 25.
What nonprofits will Stan Richards' company get, and who will run when the Richards Group runs?  Richards does not say, but he has a plan that guarantees freedom.