Helping Denver Suck Less: John Bellina, Copywriter/Creative Director

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John Bellina came to Denver by way of a career that includes CD positions at TBWA\TEQUILA in New York, Hal Riney in San Francisco, and Publicis West in Salt Lake City. His client shortlist includes: Absolut, Nextel, Pfizer and lots of names we all know. So does his 30+ awards list.

He was lured here by a challenge to breathe life into one of Denver’s oldest shops – Barnhart. In just over a year, he directed them into their first Denver 50, plus new business wins that included: The Denver Public Library, Colorado Casualty, Educause, and – a teen suicide prevention site for the Wyoming Department of Health.

As a creative director, John doesn’t just stamp his name on the awards submissions. At each of his past agencies, he’s been heavily involved in the work – from concept to copywriting to final product. He also comes ego-free, asking us to make sure credit is shared on some of the work we’ve featured with writer Bob Rickert and AD Joel Hill on Jeppesen, and with AD Darren Brickel on Wyoming.

John has recently parted ways with Barnhart and is today a copywriter/creative director gun for hire. For more on the story go to or find him on our list of Recommended Talent.


I’ve had the pleasure of working with John on a number of projects. He’s a sharp guy, truly savvy, and uniquely creative – without a doubt, one of Denver’s best. Above all, John’s one of the coolest characters you’ll meet.

Cheers John!

I have also had the pleasure to work with John on numerous occasions.
Sharp: I would say so.
Ego-Free: sure, but he is a Creative.
Creative as hell: let him show you.

I will buy a 12 pack for anyone that can give this guy a creative challenge that makes him scratch his head.

I have also had the pleasure to work / learn from John. Creatively, I’m trumping Corey and will buy anyone a 24 pack of beer and a bottle of 12-year-old scotch if John cannot deliver.

Seriously, John rocks. He delivers creative that is emotionally engaging, and strategically on point. He relates well with his team, his clients, and drives for the best in all areas.

John, I will see you on the Basketball court punk (and by “Basketball court” I mean “bar”)

I agree with all of the above comments, except he has improved and gotten better since then. He is always a pleasure to work with and gives more than 100% to his clients. His creativity and attention to detail is amazing. Denver is very lucky to have him.

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