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Robert V. (Bob) Wingo (born December 7, 1946) is an American advertising executive. He is Chairman of Sanders\Wingo Advertising Inc. in [El Paso and Austin, Texas. He is recognized for growing a local advertising firm to national prominence, as well as for work in economic and institutional development.

Early life Edit

Bob Wingo was born in Columbus, Ohio, to Robert Charles and Louise Elizabeth Wingo. Wingo’s father was a World War II veteran and career officer in the United States Army. He was stationed in South Dakota and Okinawa, Japan, before the family settled in El Paso, Texas, at Fort Bliss.

Wingo himself was drafted into the Army in 1968 and served in the Vietnam War. He was wounded twice and was later awarded a Purple Heart. After an honorable discharge, Wingo enrolled at the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) and graduated in 1973 with a bachelor's degree in marketing.[1]

Career Edit

In 1974, Wingo accepted a position at BTK Industries, home of the Billy The Kid, Bill Blass and Botany 500 brands. Wingo worked his way up from customer service to national sales to advertising manager, ultimately taking responsibility for all of the company’s marketing efforts as vice president of marketing. These included a promotional tie-in with the Los Angeles Olympics in 1984 and product campaigns with Oscar De La Renta and Jim Henson’s Muppets.

The company’s advertising agency at that time was Sanders, Pero and Morton. After a decade of working together, founder David Sanders asked Wingo to join the agency as president. Wingo accepted and the firm became Sanders, Wingo, Galvin and Morton.[1]

SWG&M excelled in healthcare, apparel and consumer product marketing, producing campaigns for Farah, Savane, Vidal Sassoon and other notable brands.[2] By the 1990s, the agency had achieved a more national standing, and Wingo was named CEO in addition to president. David Sanders died in 1992, and agency partners Beth Galvin[3] and Roy Morton later retired.

In 2000, Wingo began looking to expand beyond West Texas. The agency’s Austin office opened in 2001, on the eve of the nation’s dot-com crash and subsequent recession. Wingo persisted, landing assignments from Blockbuster, Fuddruckers, Shell, Alexander Marine and SBC Communications, among other new clients.[4][5]

In 2005, the agency relaunched as Sanders\Wingo. S\W pursued a multicultural business strategy, given its bicultural West Texas roots, the diversity of agency staff and the international influence of UTEP and UT Austin.[6]

Sanders\Wingo helped relaunch the AT&T brand as well as created prominent campaigns for Chevrolet, State Farm, El Paso Convention and Visitors Bureau, and the El Paso Electric Company.[7] In 2009, Sanders\Wingo was named Black Enterprise Advertising Agency of the Year.[8]

Beginning the next decade, Wingo broadened the agency’s positioning, taking on event-marketing duties for MINI USA[9] and social-media responsibilities for Burger King.[10] Additional client wins included Greater El Paso’s Credit Union (GECU), El Paso Water Utilities and Texas Historical Commission.[11]

In 2008, Wingo developed a partnership with Kinetic Worldwide, a New York media agency.[12] The resulting company, SWK Partners, works with major brands to develop innovative out-of-home media strategies and planning. SWK Partners also gives Sanders\Wingo a base for New York–area clients.

Civic Leadership Edit

Wingo has served in leadership roles on numerous boards and initiatives, [13] including the Cancer Prevention Research Institute of Texas (CPRIT) Foundation,[14] the UTEP College of Business,[15] the UTEP Centennial Committee,[16] the UTEP Legacy Campaign, the Economic Development Initiative for The Paso Del Norte Group,[17] the El Paso YWCA Capital Campaign Steering Committee, the El Paso Chamber of Commerce,[17] the El Paso Holocaust Museum, the Sun Bowl Association and others.

In January 2004, Gov. Rick Perry appointed Wingo to be Chairman of the Texas Economic Development Corporation Board.[18] Throughout the decade, Texas became the top state for doing business.[19] By 2009, Texas had surpassed New York State as home to the most Fortune 500 headquarters.[20]

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In 2000, Wingo was appointed to the board of directors for the Martin Luther King, Jr. National Memorial in Washington, D.C. As a member of Alpha Phi Alpha,[21] Wingo, and his agency, helped the fraternity spearhead initial fundraising, as well as oversee overall development and construction of the memorial. With his family and fellow Alphas, Wingo attended the memorial groundbreaking in 2006 and the unveiling in 2012.

In July 2013, Wingo was featured in an extensive cover story in El Paso Magazine.[22] In October 2013, he was named one of UTEP’s Distinguished Alumni, the university’s highest honor.[23]

Personal life Edit

After his discharge from the Army, Wingo met Paulette Hart, a Mountain Bell telephone operator. The two fell in love and were married in El Paso in 1971. They welcomed two daughters: Leslie, in 1972, and Shana, in 1976. The Wingos saw both daughters go on to their own successful careers, marriages and parenthood. Bob and Paulette Wingo currently live in El Paso. Paulette, a UTEP Masters graduate, is a retired educator.[24]

References Edit

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