Jeff Pappalardo, a huge name in our industry, has retired.

When you hear the name Jeff Pappalardo, it’s likely difficult not to crack a smile. And not because it’s kind of a funny sounding name (not sure I’ve ever told Jeffrey this). No. It’s because this name evokes thoughts of a one-of-a-kind, genuinely kind, stand-up guy most of us wish we could emulate. And for some, there’s at least a joke or two or ten that pops into your brain.

It’s a really great name attached to a really great man. A man who is now riding off into the sunset after an incredibly accomplished career at Crowley Webb.

But even before he fell into our lap in 1994 (many of our staff weren’t even alive then, let alone owning a lap), Jeff had already been enjoying a successful career in NYC.

Jeff began as a designer at New York Magazine in 1982. A year later, he was then named assistant art director at Grey Advertising. Following this, he joined Backer & Spielvogel as art director in 1984. After a brief stint as art director at Ally & Gargano in 1987, he was named senior art director at Anderson & Lembke/Chiat Day in 1988. In 1991, he was named partner/creative director at Ryan Drossman & Partners. Three years later, he came to us.

The name Jeff Pappalardo should also evoke thoughts of quite the pant-load of accomplishments. His work has been recognized by The One Show, Communication Arts, Art Direction Magazine, Connecticut Art Directors Club, The Globals, American Corporate Identity, District 2 ADDYs, and dozens of Buffalo ADDYs. In 2006, Jeff received the Alex Osborne Award for Creativity from AAF Buffalo. A year later he won Best of Show at the local ADDYs for posters created for a little bar in South Buffalo.

After 29 years, this is a name now up there with Crowley and Webb. Buck and Cotter. Fletcher and Spears. Hettich. Grunert and Kastan. Warner and Crippen. Reiling. Wynne. If you don’t know these names, you should.

But you certainly know the name Jeff Pappalardo. Why else would you be reading this? To me, it’s a name that represents all that’s good about our business. That ability to come up with captivating, charming, and smart ideas. It represents being respectful in difficult meetings and being respected whenever you decide to use your important voice. Being a caring mentor and an inspiring leader. An outspoken advocate for what matters always. A wonderful person others want to be around.

It’s a pretty amazing name, if you ask me. Much better than Curtis Clarkson, Frankenstein B. Smithenjive, or Von Halfpipe. Those are names I just made up (it’s true) and none could even come close to Jeff Pappalardo. So let’s have one more laugh and shed a couple more tears with this video we created for our guy with a now legendary name. And here’s to Ginny and Lou who came up with it. And, you know, raised Jeff.