Herbert Allen - Columbia College Chicago

Herbert Allen

Associate Professor Emeritus



Herbert Allen is the director of advertising studies at Columbia College Chicago, a post he has held since 1995. Attuned to the interdisciplinary nature of advertising, Allen has served as an advertising agency account executive, creative director, media director, new business development strategist and adviser to agency presidents. Having begun his advertising agency career at the Leo Burnett Company in the 1960s, he also served at several other agencies, among them Foote Cone & Belding, Vince Cullers Advertising and Burrell Advertising.

Mr. Allen authored numerous articles that have appeared in Advertising Age, the “bible” publication of America’s advertising industry. Further reflecting his interdisciplinary range, Mr. Allen is also an Emmy nominated television producer-writer who served in staff and freelance capacities at the NBC and ABC television stations in Chicago, and with Central City Productions, formerly a subsidiary of Tribune Broadcasting.

Beyond his work in advertising and mass communication, Herbert Allen is a playwright with a distinctly multicultural perspective. Some of Allen’s works include the following: an adaptation of Dag Hammarskjold’s Markings to readers theater; a two act drama, titled Ophelia Moore & Testimonies Attendant To A Murder She Committed, based on Zora Neale Hurston’s journalism coverage of an interracial crime of passion; a musical drama, titled Bijou, which was inspired by the writings of Brassai and Giradoux; and The Lady & The Sparrow, a musical remembrance which compares parallels in the lives and artistry of Billie Holiday and Edith Piaf.

Herbert Allen is a doctoral candidate in the interdisciplinary arts and sciences program at The Union Institute.

Instructional Areas

Advertising Studies and Semiotics


B.S., Mass Communications and Theatre University of Illinois - Chicago 1981
M.A., Semiotics Union Institute & University 2008