William Sharp, retired founder and CEO of Sharp Advertising Inc., is currently a consultant and adjunct marketing professor at Goizueta Business School at Emory University. Sharp opened his Atlanta-based agency in 1990 and served regional and national clients such as Southern Company, Georgia Power, Barnett Bank Inc., Burger King, Canaan Shoes Inc., Bell South and the Coca-Cola Company.
As senior vice president and general manager of Burrell Advertising/Atlanta, Sharp developed targeted advertising for Coca-Cola USA, Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority (MARTA), Underground Atlanta and Georgia Power.
For nearly 10 years as vice president, advertising manager for Coca-Cola USA, Sharp managed all of the advertising for all of the company’s soft drink brands.
Sharp’s experience includes service as director of communications for the Office of Economic Opportunity in Washington, D.C.; copywriter for EURO RSCG Tatham; copy supervisor for Leo Burnett and group supervisor for J. Walter Thompson.
Sharp is well known in the advertising community for his expertise and achievements in communications, for his community involvement and for his contributions to motivating minority youth.
Sharp is the recipient of numerous awards including, Ad Man of the Year for Southern Magazine and The Art Directors Club of New York Award. He is also a noted lecturer; and was the founder/instructor of the “Basic Ad Course,” a American Association of Advertising Agencies–sponsored program that prepared minority people for professional careers in advertising. Sharp also wrote and published a book entitled, How to Be Black and Get a Job in the Advertising Business Anyway.
Sharp is listed in Who’s Who in America; Who’s Who Worldwide and Who’s Who in Advertising. He is immediate past chairman of the Atlanta Educational Telecommunication Collaborative (AETC), the organization that manages and operates WPBA-TV and WABE-FM, Atlanta’s public broadcasting stations. Sharp is a member of the Dean’s Advisory Council, Goizueta Business School, Emory University, and a member of the executive board of the NAACP/Atlanta Branch and serves on President Carter’s Board of Councilors for the Carter Center.
Sharp’s past associations include chairman of the board of the American Advertising Federation, chairman of the National Academy of Engineering Telecommunications Subcommittee on Education, and past member of the Association of National Advertisers board of directors and the Federal Inter-Agency Media Committee that served to recommend communications policies to the president of the United States.