In 1911 Harrison McCann started an advertising agency with $5,000 borrowed money. He lived to see that organization become the first to approach the half-billion dollar mark. In 1928 McCann-Erickson established three offices in Europe, growing to include branches covering 44 countries by McCann’s death in 1962.
His vast achievements in advertising had long-lasting effects. His vision and lifelong work for better principles and practices in advertising, for the future of advertising internationally, and for mass economic education are among the most notable of his contributions.
With his partner Alfred W. Erickson and others, he helped launch the American Association of Advertising Agencies and the Audit Bureau of Circulations. For years he served as a director of the National Outdoor Advertising Bureau.
Throughout his agency career, McCann worked individually and through his agency to support campaigns to inform the public about our national economic problems and strengths. For over 20 years McCann-Erickson served as the agency of record for all the mass economic campaigns of the Advertising Council and aided the Department of State and other government agencies in similar campaigns.
Our free enterprise system and the cause of freedom have been advanced materially by the contributions of Harrison McCann and his agency and by the inspiration these have given to other advertising individuals and organizations.
His contributions to his community included his service as a trustee of Lenox Hill Hospital, a fellow of the Pierpont Morgan Library and as an overseer of Bowdoin College since 1923.