Pharrell Williams has announced the launch of a new creative advocacy agency called Mighty Dream.
According to AdWeek, the agency, which was made in partnership with the marketing group Edelman, will exclusively foster ideas for products that strive to aid marginalized communities in America. The agency will then work with big brands to bring said ideas to life, and will also be comprised entirely of Black and Brown creatives.
“If someone asks me what inspires me, I always say, ‘That which is missing,’” Williams told the outlet. “It’s the clearest path to being additive to society and finding new solutions for real problems. Mighty Dream aims to create what’s missing: in creativity, in advocacy, in society.”
The Grammy-award-winning producer will serve as co-chair and founder of the new entity.
“It is probably the most important thing I’ve done in my 30-something-year career,” added Lisa Osborne Ross, CEO of Edelman U.S. “As a woman and as a woman of color in my role and in this industry, it’s my very firm belief that businesses have not only the opportunity but also the responsibility to drive change.”
Mighty Dream will not operate as a traditional agency, and instead, the hired creatives will first identify the issue they’re seeking to quell and speak on how they plan to do so, before presenting a formal brief on their idea. The issues can be anything from financial literacy in communities of color, to food deserts and mental health resources. The agency plans to speak on what issues they aim to tackle first at a corresponding conference in November.
“It is literally designed to look at the issues that are affecting communities of color — Black people in particular — and what can brands do to address those societal issues,” Ross added.
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Pharrell has been giving back in numerous ways to marginalized communities this year. In June, his YELLOW nonprofit partnered with Cisco to provide educational tools and technologies to marginalized students looking to start a future in STEM or the arts.
Known as the YELLOWHAB “micro-school,” it’ll be located in Pharrell’s hometown of Norfolk, Virginia, and will feature smaller classrooms and more hands-on workshops that aim to provide students with an immersive learning experience based on skill rather than age.
The partnership with Cisco will provide the micro-school with state-of-the-art technologies that can aid students in learning the skills necessary to succeed at jobs in STEM or culture. The Cisco technology provided will include data centers and DNA Spaces as well as The Webex Suite, Secure X, WiFi-6 and Meraki. Together these new tools will help kids remain inspired during their work.
Pharrell has spoken extensively about YELLOWHAB, telling Rolling Stone that the “paradigm” needs to change around education.
“Let’s get rid of the old way of looking at children,” Williams said. “Our kids are not in education only to get off in the summer because we need them to go work in the factories. That’s not the world that we live in. The paradigm needs to shift. The public schools don’t have all the answers and the private schools don’t either.”
Meanwhile, Pharrell stopped by Yankee Stadium in The Bronx, New York, last month to throw out the first pitch in the Subway Series matchup against the Yanks and New York Mets.
The producer shared footage of his eventful day at the stadium, showing him taking part in all the pregame festivities. He met with a few players and did some interviews before taking the mound with his son Rocket to throw the first pitch.