Public Works Finally Utilizes That Chair No One Wanted with Hire of Andy Selness.


The chair has been passed around the office for months. People just couldn’t get comfortable with it. Despite being a Herman Miller Aeron chair, no one wanted to use it. The height adjustment sticks, the recline function on it is completely broken, so when you lean back you feel like you are going to fall out. We for sure weren’t going to let a client sit in it. Partner and Digital Creative Lead, Chris Henderson said, “The chair is fine, I’m not sure what the big deal is. The chair is completely functional for the freelancers we have in the office. I’m just glad it will get to be used fulltime now.” The new occupier of that chair will be Public Work’s first-ever Development and Production Lead, Andy Selness. Andy brings years of frontend design and development experience to help spearhead the agency’s growing digital work for clients like Klement’s Sausages, SunOpta and the University of Minnesota. Said Public Works Creative, Casey Nelson, “That chair sucks, but Andy seems really great. Just a good, talented guy. I hope agency leadership steps up and finds him a suitable chair.” At the writing of the press release Andy still had the same chair and seems perfectly fine with it.


The Meddling Kids of Public Works Help Scooby Win a Halo Award.

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Now let’s find out who is really behind the Scooby DOO GOOD campaign that won a Gold Halo Award. Nope, it’s not Old Man Jenkins, owner of the abandoned amusement park– it was Minneapolis agency Public Works all along! The DOO GOOD campaign is a Warner Bros. global initiative that uses Scooby and the Mystery Inc. Gang to inspire kids to make their community a better place. With partners like generationON and BoxLunch, we awarded grants to kids DOO-ing GOOD by taking on issues like the environment, hunger and animal welfare. The social and event-based campaign inspired thousands of hours of community service, raised money to fight hunger and was so successful it inspired the US Postal Service to commission a Scooby-Doo DOO GOOD stamp.

The Halo Awards are North America’s highest honor for corporate social initiatives and cause marketing.  Past and current winners include Google, Microsoft, AT+T and Bank of America. Warner Bros. and the DOO GOOD initiative won Gold in the Experiential Campaign Category.

When reached for comment, arch villain Hunger was quoted as saying about the effectiveness of the DOO GOOD campaign, “We would have gotten away with it, too if weren’t for those meddling kids at Public Works and Warner Bros.” The award was last seen heading West in a blue/green van.

In a Victory for Real News, Public Works Wins Hubbard School of Journalism and Mass Communication Website Project.

Supporters of the Fourth Estate and AP Style can rejoice as local Minneapolis agency, Public Works is working with the University of Minnesota and the Hubbard School of Journalism and Mass Communication to bring the School’s innovative mission to life–starting with the launch of a new website. The agency, brimming with Journalism grads and U of M alums, is honored to work with such a prestigious institution and help it bolster its brand’s standing. “We have deep ties to the U, and we couldn’t be prouder to be a part of the Hubbard School’s push into the future,” said Jenny McDowell, Partner and Business Lead at Public Works. Work on the website begins immediately and the site will be re-launched in 2019. Amanda Fretheim Gates, U of

M Hubbard School Communications Manager said, “We were excited about the thinking and passion Public Works brought to the pitch. We can’t wait to work together and see that thinking come to life.” In a nod to journalistic integrity for the project, this press release was spell checked three times.

New 2nd Swing Spots from Public Works and Don’t Blink Encourage Your Best Shot.

 2nd Swing is all about getting the best do-over you can on your golf clubs, so it only stands to reason that a man named Mulligan would be the golf retailer’s spokesman. In a new series of commercials now airing, Public Works and Don’t Blink introduce the world to Sir Stewart Mulligan, the Patron Saint of Do-Overs. The commercials will air nationally on golf tournaments to tout the Minneapolis-based company’s selection of new and used clubs, their generous buy-back program, and their award-winning club fitting. And now is your chance to tee-off on the spots. Take your best shot. The most creative critique of these ads without resorting to, “you should take a Mulligan on this idea,” wins a free sleeve of used golf balls, signed my Sir Stewart Mulligan, himself. But unlike at 2nd Swing, you only get one crack at it, so make it count.

Public Works Helps Red Lake Nation Spread The Word About Helping The Homeless

Many in Minneapolis have seen the rise of the tent encampment off of Cedar Avenue and Hiawatha. Now Red Lake Nation is stepping up and asking for help to find warmth, safety and security for the people living in “Tent City.” In an effort to get out the word on how people can help, Public Works teamed up with SSQTCH Creative to create a video that tells stories of what Tent City’s inhabitants are calling themselves, the Forgotten Natives.

Big thanks to SSQTCH Creative and NoWare Media for donating their time and talents to this project.

Oh great. Public Works Has To Make Three New Bathroom Keys.

Hey great news, Public Works has hired three new people! That makes, what? 16 employees? Cool, cool. So, who’s going to make the bathroom keys? Is Brian Hurley going to go do it? You think Derek Bitter is going to drive over to the hardware store? Nope. It’ll be me. I’ll make three keys, just like I do every time there’s a new hire. Unbelievable. I’ll give one key to Lindsey Sires, Digital and Social Media Manager. There you go, have fun with Facebook or whatever you do. Another key to Paige Gregory, Creative Designer. Hope it works. Maybe you can design me a way to get keys without having to see Jeff at the hardware store. That guy rubs me the wrong way. The third key (which I paid for with MY OWN MONEY and WILL PROBABLY NOT BE REIMBURSED FOR) goes to Chelsea Culver, Project Manager. I hear she used to be at Colle McVoy. I bet they have a whole frickin’ key department over there, with assistants and resources.  Great. DO NOT LOSE THOSE KEYS. If you do, don’t ask me to replace them. I hate that dang hardware store so much. And don’t even get me started on the key fobs. 

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Public Works Cleans Up at The Show.

Living up to their civic-minded moniker, the crew at Public Works took it upon themselves to help pick up at The Show on Friday night. Whether it was empty cocktail cups, wine glasses or those condiment boats that held the cheese sauce for the pretzels, the people of Public Works were seen putting trash in the proper receptacle throughout the venue. Chris Henderson, Creative Lead at Public Works said, “I’m still kind of shocked in 2018 the amount of chew spit you find in empty cups at parties like this.” The 13-person shop estimates it picked up at least 86 cups throughout the festive evening. But that’s just a guess. Oh, they also won nine awards including three golds for a Cereal Day video for Post Consumer Brands and one gold for press release writing.

Public Works Hires Jonathan Schuster for Design, Art Direction and General Badassery.

Always on the hunt for badass creatives and employees, Public Works hired one this week, Jonathan Schuster. Jonathan has been a badass for about 8 years, badassing at places like Six Speed and Aesthetic Apparatus. Including a stint as badass freelancer at Public Works.  Jonathan earned his badass degree from MCAD before becoming the badass he is today. He’s won badass awards and recognition from badass publications like Communication Arts and Print Magazine. Creative Lead and Public Works Partner, Brian Hurley, expounded on the hiring by saying, “Dude is a total badass.”

In his first interview, Jonathan pulled the badass move of quoting himself by saying, “Half-assing gets you nowhere. Badassing gets you to where the rainbows are made.” Although we had no clue as to what he meant, he hired him on the spot because it sounded so badass.

Jonathan’s badassness will be helping on clients such as Pebbles Cereal, Honey Bunches of Oats, Warner Brothers and State of Hockey.

Public Works Hires New Account Lead, Sam West. Makes a Big Production Out Of It.

Minneapolis agency Public Works can’t contain its giddiness over their new hire, Sam West. In fact, they are so head over heels about the new Account Lead joining the team from Planet Propaganda in Madison, WI, they couldn’t even write a press release. So they sang it. 

Ode to Sam West:
Sam West! Sam West! He really is the best! 
Sam West! Sam West! So keen and sharply dressed
Each day we find a new reason to loooove him! 
And in the sky there is no star aboooove him!  
His account work is spectacular, there is no going back to where we were! Sam West! Sam West! We truly are so blessed! 
His past work is so very very well done
With clients he can always hit a home run! 
He worked with major brands you see, At his former agency
Like Culver’s and so many more we can’t believe he’s at our door! 
He’s Sam Weeeeest!  

Public Works pulls a cereal whale out of Breakfast Bay

Public Works pulls a cereal whale out of Breakfast Bay Deftly maneuvering their small but mighty ship through the milky waves of the CPG ocean, the seaworthy crew at Public Works has landed a whopper. Honey Bunches of Oats named Public Works AOR in a small maritime ceremony. The team will handle strategy, creative, broadcast, social for the general market, digital, and deck-swabbing. Reached for comment while on shore leave, Creative Lead Derek Bitter declared “Am I missing something? I guess I don’t get the whole ocean metaphor. I mean, can’t we just say that we’re incredibly excited to be working with a great brand like Honey Bunches of Oats? Not everything has to be a big silly thing all the time.” Added Business Lead Jenny McDowell, on the phone after glancing at the release “Yeah, why are we on a ship? Can you just add that we are honored that Post Consumer Brands continues to find trust in us to partner with them on their biggest brands. I mean we are working on PEBBLES™ Cereal and other brands including Malt-O-Meal®, GREAT GRAINS®, HONEYCOMB® and now HONEY BUNCHES OF OATS®!” Aye aye, Mateys. 

Young agency becomes angsty teen agency, moves out of basement.


Having outgrown their childhood home at COCO, in the basement of a CVS, one-year-old agency Public Works has decided to move out. Once an adorable, precocious four-person group, the agency has quickly evolved into a gangly 12-person team. Their new home in the International Design Center Building will afford them plenty of room to expand further, as well as ample wall space for all those sweet blacklight posters. Though working in a space with luxuries like windows and sunlight might take some getting used to, Public Works Creative Lead Brian Hurley is confident the agency will continue to thrive in the North Loop saying, “We’re gonna get a soda machine.” Looks like someone is all grown up. Public Works moves in April 3rd. 

Public Fights Entropy with New Hire, Sarah Maki.

In hopes of staving off the eventual decline into disorder that all natural systems are prone to succumb to in the physical world, Public Works is happy announce the arrival of Sarah Maki, our new Project Management and Operations Lead. Within Chaos Theory there is a concept of Spontaneous Order which states that under the right conditions, chaos spontaneously evolves into a lockstep pattern. In a statement, Creative Lead, Derek Bitter, said, “Yeah, that Spontaneity Order thingy? That’s what we think Sarah is going to bring. And we think she might bring donuts to meeting sometimes, too. So that will be good.” Before unraveling the snarl of jobs, numbers and calendars in the randomness of the Public Works server, Sarah was Operations Director at Modern Climate.

Sarah Maki, Project Management and Operations Lead
In a chaotic industry in which we are supposed to break rules, Sarah is a true bringer of order and keeps us all on task and dedicated to the process. A master of calendars, budgets and tiny details, Sarah fights chaos with calm, and has done so her entire career working on such clients as Intel, Jamba Juice and Whole Foods. Naturally, in her family band, she plays the drums. Keeping everyone in line and on rhythm. 

After numerous new business wins, agency debates number exclamation points to use in press release headline.

Minneapolis agency, Public Works, recently celebrated winning four new pieces of business from pitches over the past month! The current agency of record for Pebbles and Honeycomb Cereals, won three other Post Consumer Brands accounts, Malt-O-Meal, Great Grains and Grape Nuts! Then moving outside the cereal aisle, Public Works also won digital work from E.A Sween Company, the makers of Deli Express Sandwiches! The agency quickly took sides on how many exclamation points the news deserved given how excited they are to add the new clients to their roster. Some logically thought it should be four, since they won four new pieces of business. But the writer at the agency pointed out that one exclamation point would get the point across, and that four seemed excessive. A compromise was reached, and the writer agreed to use four exclamation points spread throughout the first paragraph!

Both Malt-O-Meal and Great Grains work will include, social, digital and broadcast production. Budgets for the brands and the scope of work for Grape Nuts were not disclosed. For Minnesota-based E.A. Sween Company, the makers of Deli Express Sandwiches, Public Works will be building the company’s first-ever consumer-facing website in their 55-year history.

The one-year old agency was glad to put the exclamation point debate behind them, and now has a system in place for possible new business wins. Stay tuned! 

Public Works helps launch Cinnamon Pebbles into stores and into the air.

Minneapolis, MN – January 31, 2017 With the help of an air cannon and a few surprised kids, Public Works helped Post Consumer Brands launch Cinnamon Pebbles into the conscious of cereal fans everywhere. The new spot, now airing on Nickelodeon, Cartoon Network, Disney XD and other kid-channels, along with a digital and social buy, ends with the simple message that the much sought-after flavor is finally here. Cinnamon Pebbles hit store shelves in early 2017. 

Agency: Public Works
Production Company: Washington Square Films
Audio Production: Noware Media
Post Production: Volt
Director: Michael McCourt
Editor: Tim Taylor
Agency Creatives: Brian Hurley, Brian Slater, Nels Lennes, Casey, Nelson
Agency Producer: Joel Dodson 

Hiring levels spike in the New Year, then quickly go back to normal.

Minneapolis agency Public Works was one-for-one in hiring new employees in the New Year as of the first day of business on Monday, January 2, 2017. The young agency hired Kelsey Shaw as a Community Manager. Kelsey, who freelanced with Public Works for the past three months became an official employee at the start of the New Year and will help run the Pebbles Cereal social account, and other unnamed new business account wins (yes, that is a not-so-subtle teaser for forthcoming press releases).  Hiring quickly trailed off for the rest of the week, but we have strong hopes for next week. And the year to come. Kelsey’s bio below. 

Kelsey Shaw, Community Manager-  Kelsey joined Public Works after graduating from the University of Minnesota in 2015. Kelsey’s can-do attitude and in-depth knowledge of social media platforms made her the perfect fit for the Public Works team. When she is not community managing, jogging, yoga-ing or being freaked out by the agency mouse, Kelsey is helping the over-40 Public Workers boost likes on their personal Instagram accounts.

On an untypically slow day, we finally get to announcing new hires.

Minneapolis, MN - October 19, 2016

After months of everyone claiming to be too busy with real client work to write the press release, Public Works is finally happy to announce the addition of two new employees:  Sam Christian and Brian Slater. Both will work primarily on our Pebbles Cereals and Post Foods accounts, as well as pitching in on the Minnesota Wild, State of Hockey and Lake Monster Brewing. The writer of the release, feeling snubbed by drawing the short straw, was too grumpy to get any comments. From anyone. But here are their bios.


Sam Christian, Creative-  Sam came to Public Works from Space 150. As a social strategist and creative , Sam creates engaging brand content to drive our clients’ businesses. In short, he gets things liked. And shared. And commented on. And clicked on. And shared again. Sam’s social media skills were honed on brands like 3M, Jack Links and Cambria. Sam also subscribes to an always-on strategy for his hair. It always looks really, really good.


Brian Slater, Creative-  Brian is a creative. Pure and simple. With a creative mind and background, he took the road way less traveled to an agency gig. We’re not sure it’s ever been traveled. Starting as an editor, Brian worked his way into becoming a director on national spots for clients like General Mills, Mini and H&R Block. Now, we get Brian’s brain on our side way earlier in the creative process to go along with his post-production skills. In hindsight it would have been cool to offer him the job by saying, “Join the Agency Side” in our best Darth Vader voice. But we didn’t.