Deb Morrison is the Carolyn Silva Chambers Distinguished Professor of Advertising and director of the School of Journalism and Communication’s advertising program, where she teaches conceptual and strategic thinking, creativity and content, portfolio classes, and Oregon’s Creative Strategist course. She believes strong university programs should uphold the promise of developing intellect and talent for the idea industry and help build strong, responsible brands through compelling creative work. She consults regularly for brands and communication issues in higher education and on creative talent development strategies for agencies and the profession. Her books include The Creative Process Illustrated: How Advertising’s Big Ideas are Born (2010) with Glenn Griffin and Idea Industry: How to Crack the Advertising Career Code with Brett Robbs (2009).
Morrison leverages the conceptual and critical skills of the idea industry to work on solving social and cultural issues. She and three SOJC journalism faculty members are the founders of Science & Memory, a platform for stories of change around the complex issues of environment and climate change from Oregon to Alaska. The project has been awarded the University of Oregon Innovation and Impact Research Award for 2015. Morrison has been named a 2015 Fellow of the Agora Journalism Center to focus on building climate change awareness and community activism in the advertising industry. She also works on issues exploring livability and public transportation.
Morrison developed the Epoch Project, dedicated to bringing creative professionals together to solve problems related to climate and environmental change using information and creativity. The Epoch Project suggests this is a new era for the creative world built on purpose and solving problems.
Morrison is the 2015 winner of the AEJMC Distinguished Teaching Award and a two-time winner of the SOJC Marshall Award for Innovative Teaching. She was named a Grandmaster of The Art Directors Club in New York in 2009 and served on the board of The One Club for Art + Copy—the only educator to serve on that professional board—for two terms between 2004 and 2009. She’s spoken at SXSW, HOW Design Conference, Google, 72U, TedX UOregon, and various professional venues focused on creativity and talent. She has served on international juries for the Art Directors Club as well as regional advertising awards shows for the Addys. Previously, she was director of Texas Creative at The University of Texas at Austin Department of Advertising and a member of that faculty.
- PhD, University of Texas at Austin
- MA, University of Texas at Austin
- BJ, Sam Houston State University
Areas of Expertise
Creativity and creative process
Advertising as catalyst for change
Morrison’s research interests include the creative process in creative professionals, creative organizations, teamsmanship, and creative training grounds in the advertising industry.
- The Creative Strategist
- Interactive Media
- Portfolio Development
- Green Brand Strategy
- NYC Experience