Bert was the son of a traveling salesman who took his family along via a travel trailer that would be stationed in roadside campgrounds. By age 16, he had lived in 47 different states.
As a boy, he fashioned a radio from an oatmeal box and wire, and a love of storytelling blossomed as he enjoyed the early radio shows.
Endlessly curious, he delighted in figuring out how things work, fixing everything from motorcycles to washing machines and devising ingenious solutions to everyday problems.
His tall stature and guy activities like motorcycling, wrestling and hunting were at odds with the fact that he also was a hopeless romantic, teased for his appreciation of chick-flick movies and women’s fashion and never failing to write heartfelt notes to family members in recognition of special events.
He was smart, witty and extraordinarily well read.
Bert’s career in advertising spanned decades beginning with BBDO in New York, later moving to Leo Burnett in Chicago. Even in his early years, he created memorable campaigns such as the “Man from Glad.”
He began working at the Minneapolis office of Bozell Worldwide in 1977 and retired in 1995 as Creative Managing Partner and Executive Creative Director.
He would describe his achievements more in terms of teaching and opening doors for others and perhaps his greatest contribution to advertising was his mentoring of the ad world’s rising creative stars. He taught his staff to concentrate until the work was great-even if the product was a simple coupon ad.
At home, he devoted time to studying bird habits. Very early mornings always found Bert, seated in his favorite chair, watching his many bird feeders, nursing a thermos of coffee and reading from a book grabbed from a library used book sale, a bargain counter or his collection of fine classics.
He loved reading, seizing every opportunity to discover his next book or to discuss his latest read.
He also found fulfillment in retirement by donating his time to Minnesota Radio Talking Book Network where, nearly every Friday, he recorded for the blind a wide range of books from the witty Jimi Hendrix Turns 80 to Dog Days.
Bert leaves a huge hole in the lives he touched and is dearly missed by his family and friends who remember him for his adventurous spirit, his bear-like energy, his way with words, his candor and his pithy wisdom.
If reading and thinking about Bert makes you smile, click here to sign his guest book.