Ad Industry Vet David Verhoef, Co-founder of The Cabinet, Retires After Four Decades
David Verhoef
  • SAN FRANCISCO
  • --

David Verhoef--whose career spans the advertising agency, production and post company sides of the business--has announced his retirement after four decades.

When Verhoef started in advertising, there were three platforms for “branded content”: TV, radio and print. The landscape is now a digital maze of channels, formats and deliverables. As an agency producer and, most recently, as co-founder and CEO of production and post shop The Cabinet, Verhoef has deftly navigated these sharp corners and delivered consistently and agnostically across every plane of the branded medium. 

From sharing craft service tables with ad creative luminaries Lee Clow and Cliff Freeman to filmmaker Terry Gilliam writing a sweet note after a shoot to his newborn daughter, Gillian, Verhoef’s storied career has yielded an array of award-winning work for global brands including Nissan, Converse, Coca-Cola, McDonald’s and Microsoft. In addition to his dozens of industry awards as a producer, he has been honored with a Cannes Gold Lion as a copywriter and an Art Directors Club Best of Show as a director. Verhoef also executive produced the award-winning short films Pie, and Gary, which collected top honors at nearly a dozen festivals, including the London International Short Film Festival and the Indie Short Fest, along with the soon-to-be released title Denuevo.

“As a baby growing up at Chiat\Day in the ‘80s, I would laugh that I have a career filling the 30 seconds when everyone gets up to go to the bathroom,” Verhoef mused. “A job where the best and brightest creative minds would earnestly discuss whether the Energizer Bunny’s tail should stick out in an astronaut costume. I love this silly business that has taken me from L.A. to Boston to N.Y. to San Francisco. My wonderful journey culminated in my favorite job with my friend Doug Cox at The Cabinet. Together, we battled advertising’s new arch nemesis, the ‘Skip’ button. I’ve had a ball. Thank you everyone who has been along with me for the ride. It’s time for my wife, Barbara, and I to travel the world and see the sights. Let the new kids fight over the hot Taquitos that craft services serves up in the late afternoon on the shoot. Damn, I have to say, I am going to miss those.”

“David has the vision of a great artist and the mind to know how to achieve it, and you know you can pull it off when he’s around,” said The Cabinet’s sr. editor, Stu Barnes. “Working for and alongside him has been one of the greatest privileges of my life. I have to brag about him, because you’ll never hear David utter a word about himself. He’s earned all the paper umbrella drinks that await him.”

The Cabinet’s co-founder and CCO, Doug Cox--who first met Verhoef years back when both were on staff at Publicis & Hal Riney in San Francisco, shared--“I had a dream last night that Verhoef and I were dressed like Vikings and in the distance was a ship bearing our shield logo floating out to sea. We shot our flaming arrows and set it ablaze, sending it to Valhalla...I turned around and there stood Ricardo Montalban, Cindy Lauper and Anna Kendrick beckoning me to join them in the mushroom grotto...You know what, the rest of the dream doesn’t matter. The point is, there is no The Cabinet without David Verhoef and there’s no one on this planet I’d rather have had that adventure with. Eight years ago, we started this company with one goal in mind, to make cool stuff with our friends. I will, without a doubt, still be making cool stuff with friends and so will Stu. Perhaps now, David gets to be that Justice League character that makes a cameo to thunderous adoration. As for me, I really just want to work. I look forward to the future and what it may bring. Hopefully, there’s a mushroom grotto.” 

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