FREE THE BID is an Initiative guaranteeing women directors an equal opportunity to bid on commercial jobs in the advertising world. Less than 7% of directors are women, and less than 3% of creative directors at ad agencies are women. These numbers are hard to swallow for 50% of the world’s population, especially when the Harvard business review and many publications suggest that women are and the NUMBER 1 consumer group that makes for 85% of product purchase decisions. Problem: A cycle that keeps women from being considered. At the bidding stage, ad agencies typically present the brand with three [...]



    Java Jacobs is twenty-five, talented, and recently signed. Her story is unusual. After winning awards for a short film she made in school, Java invested the award money into making a spec commercial for Canal+ that went viral and, after airing duringthe Olympics, continues to air today! This experience jumpstarted her career, and we are excited to see what quirky and intelligent work comes from her this year. In the meantime, watch her commercial and short film here.   Read on to hear more about her process in our Q&A with Java Jacobs: 1. How did your short [...]



NextRound Productions

The Women’s Marches that took place on January 21st, in the aftermath of Donald Trump’s inauguration, drew unprecedented crowds into the streets in cities all across the world, pledging support for the rights of all women and disenfranchised people. Our hearts are still pounding from the inspiring turn out! Based on numbers tallied by UConn professor Jeremy Pressman, the current total estimate of those who attended the march (not including those who demonstrated in other countries) falls between 3.2 million and 4.2 million, making it the largest protest in US history. In the midst of Washington D.C.’s March, Free The [...]



We kid you NOT! Today HP, Visa, BBDO, F&F and Gyro have pledged their financial support for #FREETHEBID so we can take our initiative GLOBAL.   Where’s a better place for them to announce it then at the Women’s Entrepreneurship Day (WED) at the UN: A day held on the 19th of November of each year that is recognized and participated in by 144 nations.   In the space of synchronicity, two months since we started Free The Bid and two months after HP’s agency call to action to improve diversity in leadership went out into the world, we come together to [...]


Cindy Gallop

Advertising consultant, founder and former chair of the US branch of advertising firm Bartle Bogle Hegarty, and founder of the IfWeRanTheWorld and MakeLoveNotPorn companies.

“I am absolutely thrilled with this initiative and could not support it more.It appalls me how much our industry, clients and brands are missing out on a huge, untapped, completely wasted pool of female directorial talent, not to mention female talent across all stages of production. A huge amount of money (from creating more brand success for our predominantly female-targeting clients) and awards (for truly innovative, disruptive work) are being left on the table. END THAT NOW and pledge #FreeTheBid.”

Spike Jonze

Film director, film producer, screenwriter
and co-president of Viceland

“I find Free the Bid so inspiring. It seems like a no brainer. Of course we should be getting more women filmmakers to bid on jobs! As with all great ideas, its such a simple one and the end result is going to be getting more diverse voices into the conversation and therefore more diverse voices into the work which makes the work better.”

Alma Har’el

Director, Producer and Cinematographer.
Founder of #FREETHEBID

“I’m starting #FreeTheBid so the ad industry can come together and take an affirmative step towards addressing what stops advertisers from working with women directors. I couldn’t have been an independent filmmaker and make the films I love if I didn’t make a living directing commercials. I want to make sure other women filmmakers have the same chance to sustain themselves while being creative and shaping the way women are represented in advertising. We have to start the change right now in the only practical and effective way – Let women be heard.”


PJ Pereira CCO & Co-founder Pereira & O’Dell

“A simple idea that would force the entire ecosystem to consider women directors.”

Susan Credle Global CCO FCB Global

“To find great female directors, first, you have to look for them. It’s that simple. #FreeTheBid reminds us all to open our eyes to the less obvious but perhaps even more brilliant choice.”

Mark Waites Founder & Creative Partner Mother

“We’re in!”

Glenn Cole & John Boiler CCO + CEO 72andSunny

“We can all agree on the importance of diversity, but it comes down to access and opportunity. Free The Bid fosters both, prioritizing action over talk. It also points to a future where our daughters have the same access and opportunity we had. Hell yes to that.”

Maria Smith Executive Creative Director M&C Saatchi LA

“It’s all too easy to see the disparity in our industry. So championing an initiative like Free the Bid was a no brainer. It’s a simple and smart way that we can all affect a sea of change.”

Christoph Becker CEO+CCO Gyro

“This is about supporting some of the most talented directors in the world. Giving them a platform, with #FreetheBid, to shine as they deserve is a logical call to action we believe in 100%, on all fronts.”

#FreetheBid is supported by:

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  • Visa Logo Small
  • Gyro Logo Small
  • F&F Logo Small


Join some of the world’s greatest ad agencies and #FREETHEBID

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