The Columbia Ad Club was founded in 1955 and is affiliated with the American Advertising Federation (AAF) which is the oldest national advertising trade association, representing 40,000 professionals in the advertising industry worldwide. By vote of the local organization’s Board of Directors, the affiliate’s name was changed in 2007 to AAF of the Midlands in order to enhance branding at the local, regional and national level.
AAF of the Midlands is a member of Third District of the AAF, which represents South Carolina, North Carolina and Virginia. Membership is open to any individual or company involved in any way in advertising, communications or marketing.
The American Advertising Federation defines its mission as:
The American Advertising Federation is dedicated to serving members by protecting and advancing advertising interests, including the freedom to truthfully advertise legal products. AAF fulfills this mission through effective government relations, professional development, public education, advertising education, advertising standards, public service and recognition of excellence.
AAF of the Midlands exists to serve our members. Our specific objectives are:
- Provide and promote a better understanding of the functions of advertising and marketing and their value.
- Apply the skills, creativity and energy of the advertising and marketing industry whenever it is needed to help solve social problems.
- Advance the standards of advertising and marketing through a voluntary program or self-regulation.
- Promote good fellowship and a free exchange of ideas.
- The club shall be non-sectarian, non-partisan and non-profit.