Beloved publicist Bill McLeod dies

April 4, 2009

William W. (Bill) McLeod, 59, one of the Bay Area’s most respected film publicists died at his home on March 29th, 2009, in San Rafael, California, of natural causes. McLeod’s first agency job was at Jack Wodell in 1980, and subsequently at the bay area agencies of DDB Needham, Evans Group, Publicis Dialog, Allied McDonald, and his most recent stint was at Terry Hines & Associates as Senior VP of Marketing & Promotions from 2003 to 2005.

Born in Oklahoma, but spending most of his youth growing up in Colorado, McLeod worked at Paramount Pictures in Hollywood covering specialized marketing for institutions, colleges, and art museums from 1978 to 1979. McLeod oversaw the local publicity and publicity tours for most of the studios and mini majors over the span of his career. For the past four years, McLeod worked independently on local Sundance Channel events, the Sundance Cinemas, and Strand Releasing, as well as handling the bay area publicity for the critically acclaimed independent film, Ballast.

McLeod was admired and respected for his comprehensive, creative publicity campaigns and his ability to handle each movie with care and enthusiasm, whether it was a major studio release or a small independent film. McLeod was known for his sunny disposition and unflappable personality under the most stressful of situations.

McLeod’s daughter, Alanna, described her father as an incredible chef, a loving and adoring father, and doting caretaker of AJ and Amos, two miniature poodles.

McLeod held an MA in Journalism and Film Studies from University of Colorado at Boulder, where he met his wife, Joy. McLeod loved and cared for his wife, Joy Ellen Gorelick, until she passed away in November, 2006. He is survived by his daughter, Alanna.

A memorial service is being planned in the Bay Area.

Donations may be made in McLeod’s name to the Myelodysplastic Syndromes Foundation, Hospice by the Bay, or a favorite charity of the donor’s choice.

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