The Drum Awards Festival - Official Deadline

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3% Conference Marketing Diversity & Inclusion

More than 70 women of color who should be speaking at marketing conferences


By Doug Zanger, Americas Editor

January 17, 2018 | 31 min read

As CES wrapped up, the furor over the lack of gender or inclusive talent on stage was still pervasive. The organization put itself into a deeper hole, even before the conference started by claiming that, for next year’s show in Las Vegas, adding female voices to the lineup remained “a challenge.”

Tricia Clarke-Stone, Thas Naseemuddeen, Luvvie Ajayi and Gladys King

Tricia Clarke-Stone, Thas Naseemuddeen, Luvvie Ajayi and Gladys Kong / Bronac McNeil (Luvvie Ajayi)

The Drum was inspired to find out what female talent — and taking it further, female talent of color — should be on stage not only at CES but other industry events.

Suggestions came from the top levels of the industry. David Sable, chief executive officer of Y&R; Alicia Hatch, chief marketing officer of Deloitte Digital; Mack McKelvey, chief executive officer of SalientMG and The Credentialed and a long list of senior communications professionals chipped in. They provided a telling glimpse into the massive amount of female talent of color that they believe should be an integral addition to the chorus of voices on the industry speaker circuit.

What started as a request for 50 women of color blossomed into a list of over 70 — and one that we will continue to update over time — and we encourage you to keep sending suggestions our way.

1) Natalie Kim, founder, We Are Next

We Are Next is the platform that this industry needs when it comes to education: smart, relevant ideas on how talent is developed and where to go for information. Kim has developed tools, while her talks are smart and organized, as well as being absolutely on point.

2) Luvvie Ajayi, writer at Awesomely Luvvie, digital strategist and New York Times best-selling author

Ajayi, who recently won an Adcolor Rockstar Award and participated in the 2017 3% Conference, has been blogging and consulting for over a decade. She recently inked a deal with ABC to produce a show based off her best-seller, I’m Judging You.

3) Aisha Moodie-Mills and Danielle Moodie-Mills, co-founders, Victory Fund

The wife-and-wife duo launched Victory Fund, the largest resource of the nation’s largest resource for openly LGBTQ public officials. Aisha remains at the organization, while Danielle left to launch Politini Media, its flagship publication being the activism-centered Woke&.

4) Bozoma St John, chief brand officer, Uber

The recently-hired chief brand officer has become more of a household name than the ride-hailing service itself. She’s more than made her legacy infusing culture to Apple Music, the Beats brand and PepsiCo.

5) Tiana Holt, principal, Faith Popcorn's BrainReserve (FPBR)

Holt helps clients not only see the future, but also apply it to their business today. She’s spoken at Harvard Business School, and has led key projects for FPBR for brands such as Johnson & Johnson, Quaker, Campbell’s, and American Express.

6) Angela Pih, chief marketing officer, Halston

Pih’s experience working on global brands, and living in three different continents prove effective for her work with the luxury brand. An affinity for the luxury market and millennials, she’s also served as a board member of ThinkLA since 2012.

7) Morgan DeBaun, co-founder and chief executive, Blavity

DeBaun is a Silicon Valley-based entrepreneur and co-founder of Blavity and lifestyle site 21Ninety - popular sites among millennial women of color.

8) Issa Rae, actor and producer, HBO's Insecure, Awkward Black Girl, etc

YouTube star-turned-HBO actor-producer of hit series Insecure, Issa Rae has become a new face for Covergirl as well as one of the foremost voices of her generation.

9) Melissa Jun Rowley, co-founder, Resolve

Jun Rowley has combined her talents and passions in social justice and innovation to create Resolve, which trains entrepreneurs and gives them the resources to have impact around the world.

10) Ji Krinsky, vice-president of brand partnerships, Genius

Krinsky, previously a brand partnerships leader at Complex Media, helped build Genius' brand partnerships team from the ground up. She oversees how the brand leverages organic relationships with artists and celebrities to help brands tell their stories to our large and extremely diverse audience — all 100 million of them.

11) Alex West Steinman, co-founder, The Coven MPLS

A Fallon alum, Steinman co-founded the women’s only co-working space in Minneapolis, out of a need to build community in an industry that wouldn’t allow it. She also co-founded MadWomen, an organization dedicated to advancing women of color in advertising and marketing.

12) Jerri DeVard, executive vice-president and chief customer officer, Office Depot

DeVard brings more than 30 years of extensive marketing and leadership experience at large global brands. Previously, DeVard was senior vice-president and chief marketing officer for The ADT Corporation. Prior to ADT, DeVard held various marketing leadership positions for Nokia, Verizon and Citigroup.

13) Aline Ridolfi, creative director, Fake Love

A creative director at the experiential advertising firm, Ridolfi has a decade of experience in storytelling. A former journalist in São Paulo, Brazil, she found her way into the creative world, and now finds herself in a full circle moment working for a creative arm of the New York Times.

14) Kinda Akash, creative director, The Mill

A creative director at The Mill, Akash is a highly talented designer, having directed and led projects for major brands such as AT&T. Her latest creative endeavor, Uproar, is a digital art installation that pays homage to the resilience Hurricane Harvey Victims.

15) Kristina (KJ) Jenkins, chief strategy officer, Zambezi

The former culture intelligence officer for McGarryBowen, Jenkins brings 20-plus years of agency experience from time served at Zambezi, RPA and McGarryBowen, and also sits on the board of the Marcus Graham Project.

16) Raven (Sia) Flagg, head of production, Framestore

Holding an MA degree in marriage and family Therapy, Flagg made the career change to VFX over a decade ago and believes in constant reinvention. Her wide portfolio of work like Morgan Stanley’s large-scale data visualization in Times Square, The Weeknd's ‘In the Night’ and Geico’s much-loved Gecko.

17) Boo Wong, director of emerging technology, The Mill

Wong is considered one of The Mill's pioneering thinkers at the forefront of emerging technology, driving new experiences and possibilities. As an industry thought-leader, she has been called upon countless times to offer her expertise on VR, AR and more.

18) Jill Frank, head of content production, Epsilon

Before joining Epsilon in 2015 to lead the agency's production team, Jill was supervising producer at Harpo Productions for The Oprah Show and The Dr Oz Show. A fierce supporter of female talent, Frank also chairs the education wing of Epsilon's Diversity and Inclusion Council.

19) Tricia Clarke-Stone, chief executive officer, WPNarrative

Clarke-Stone, a co-founder and the chief executive officer of branded content studio WPNarrative, has led a number of groundbreaking campaigns, including the award-nominated 'Change Perspective' campaign she concepted and executed for RushCard, which examined the difficult topic of police violence and #BlackLivesMatter in a nuanced and considerate way.

20) Thas Naseemuddeen, chief strategy officer, Omelet

Naseemuddeen brings over a decade of experience across a number of prominent agencies, culminating in current role as partner and chief strategy officer at Omelet. She has led the strategic charge on brands including Target, Red Bull, Coca-Cola, Nickelodeon, and Google.

21) Ronalee Zarate-Bayani, chief marketing officer, Los Angeles Rams

Probably one of the most interesting chief marketing officer jobs in sports, and the business overall. Zarate-Bayani isn’t just marketing an NFL franchise, but is essentially building a smart city - a whole new district in LA - that the team will call home.

22) Gladys Kong, chief executive officer, UberMedia

Kong, a CalTech alum, joined UberMedia as chief technology officer in 2012. Gladys also served as chief executive officer at Go Interactive, vice-president of engineering at, and vice-president of research and development at Idealab.

23) Di Dang, emerging tech lead, Pop

Dang leads the Emerging Tech group at digital agency Pop. She advises clients on how emerging technologies will impact their business, and she loves working the full product development cycle, having recently shipped XR experiences for Pop’s Fortune 100 clients. Dang also works as a VR and AR instructor at the School of Visual Concepts.

24) Taamy Amaize, co-founder, creative strategy director, Skill Committee

Amaize helped launch Skill Committee, an entity that allows her to bring her experience building brands to the industries that need it the most, and to better aid marginalized communities by appealing to their psychographic profile rather than their demographics.

25) Judy Jackson, global chief talent officer, Wunderman

Jackson, who’s spent time between IPG, DigitasLBi, and Time, Inc. famously called out 3% Conference this year for not actually being diverse, which lead to the 3% Conference making drastic changes to the ways they approach their content.

26) Dionna McPhatter, co-founder and managing director, BLKBOX

Less than 1,000 black females graduate from West Point - McPhatter is one of them. Self-taught in programming, she leads next-generation, tech-driven marketing agency, BLKBOX, with over 110,000 Instagram followers and 30-plus Fortune 500 clients.

27) Marina Filippelli, senior vice-president, director of client services, Orcí

As senior vice-president at Orcí (the largest Hispanic independent advertising agency in the US), Filippelli has led US Hispanic-focused campaigns for Honda, Acura and Dole. She brings years of experience in Hollywood, and has worked at Heat to help lead its first multicultural division.

28) Susie Nam, chief operating officer, Droga5

Nam leads all business operations for Droga5, all in effort to drive influence for its clients’ businesses. Also an Adcolor board member, Nam believes empowered employees are the greatest resource of all.

30) Karen Olivares, senior director of marketing, Marriott

With over 10 years under her belt at the hotel chain, Olivares brings an extensive background in travel, CPG and tech, and has also spent considerable time for AOL and Kraft.

31) Danielle Lee, global head of partner solutions, Spotify

A Columbia grad and MBA, Lee’s tenure in the industry has included stints at Showtime, AT&T, and Vevo before joining the streaming giant. At Cannes, she discussed, at length, why being inclusive employers builds robust success in the advertising and marketing business.

32) Farzana Nasser, co-president, Women in Wireless

Nasser is a mobile product-marketing entrepreneur with over 10 years of experience leveraging technology to promote great products and achieve real business results. In 2015, she began volunteering with Women in Wireless as the co-chair of global panels and partnerships before being named President in 2017. One of the first things that Nasser put into motion in the top role was the curation of female founders panels.

33) Tiffany Edwards, senior programs manager, Droga5

Formerly the inclusion director at The Advertising Club of New York, Edwards joined Droga5 in 2016 as its first senior programs and outreach manager — a role in which she manages and develops employee programs, learning and development, and inclusion efforts.

34) Jewell Donaldson, copywriter, Leo Burnett

Donaldson, an Air Force veteran who broke into the industry through the Marcus Graham Project, has crafted compelling for for Allstate, Kraft, and United Healthcare. She’s received numerous honors from the One Club, Adcolor, and the American Advertising Federation.

35) Latasha Sukhu, global chief learning and engagement officer, Y&R

As global chief learning and engagement officer of Y&R, Sukhu believes in designing work environments that encourage employees to bring their whole selves. She brings 10 years of experience training and developing leaders at the Girl Scouts of America, Citi, Hearst, and American Express.

36) Tasha Gilroy, director of inclusion and community, Y&R

With over 12 years at Y&R, Gilroy has led inclusion initiatives and maintains long-term relationships with 4As, AAF, ColorComm and other organizations to attract and develop diverse talent. She is developing toolkits for Y&R offices to create local cultural exchange events, lectures and seminars.

37) Pam El, chief marketing officer, NBA

The former vice-president of marketing for Nationwide and State Farm, El recognizes the role that technology plays in fan engagement and she utilizes data to drive consumer knowledge to best segment/market to different types of NBA fans.

38) Liza Landsman, president, (Walmart)

Previously the e-retailer’s chief customer officer, Landsman has been responsible for driving its growth through marketing, advertising, and the smart use of data. Prior to her time at Jet, she was chief marketing officer at E-Trade Financial; global head of digital at BlackRock, and a decade in senior management positions at Citigroup.

39) Shannon Washington, creative director, Droga5

Washington, a Howard University alum, landed in New York over ten years ago and has since crafted powerful work at Grey, Time’s Invnt, and now Droga5, for brands like Covergirl, Pantene, Pandora and Perrier. A frequent traveler, she also started a travel platform for black women: Parlour.

40) Marla Blow, founder and chief executive officer, FSCard

Marla is the founder/chief executive officer of FSCard. A leader in fintech, her company continues to be a company-to-watch outside of the fintech capitals of Boston, New York and San Francisco. Her background in consumer protection uniquely positions to help underserved markets in credit services.

41) Clara de Soto, co-founder, is a customer experience automation platform, that helps companies better reach and serve millennial customers on messaging and voice channels via conversational AI. Under de Soto’s guidance, Reply has already won four Cannes Lions, four Clios, and is the only startup to make Forrester’s “Top 10 Chatbots for Enterprise” Service.

42) Judy Lee, industry marketing lead, Pinterest

Lee leads the industry marketing practice at Pinterest. Prior to this role, she worked in marketing at Facebook and Instagram. Prior to Facebook, she has held marketing leadership roles that focused on growing revenue through effective marketing at forward-thinking companies during their prime such as Pandora, AOL (TechCrunch, Engadget, Huffington Post), CNET, and Gap.

43) Kimberly Evans Paige, chief marketing officer, North America, Coty

The Coty chief marketer has been in her role with the beauty brand for just over a year, but she’s had extensive experience in marketing, starting with Procter & Gamble and, after time to launch her own consultancy, The Coca-Cola Company for over seven years.

44) Christina Menendez Pettibone, vice-president and general manager (Target Team), Pepsi

Menendez Pettibone notched over 15 years at Pepsi (in several divisions) and Unilever prior to Pepsi. A Vanderbilt MBA and SMU alum, she’s considered intricately knowledgeable about consumer packaged goods and channel consumer marketing.

45) Naz Amarchi-Cuevas, co-founder, 212 Strategy Consultancy and head of licensing, Sybo games

Amarchi-Cuevas has over 20 years of diverse experience in sales, marketing and brand development, and brings it all together for Sybo, a mobile game developer known for its popular game Subway Surfers.

46) Tara DeVeaux, chief marketing officer, BBDO New York

DeVeaux took a round trip in and out of the ad industry, starting at Y&R, then switching to TV with the Oxygen network. Once mobile marketing took off, she headed up the discipline for Vibe and Spin Magazines, before heading back to Madison Avenue. First, SpikeDDB, and then a return to BBDO New York, helping win many awards in the process.

47) Telisa Yancy, chief marketing officer, American Family Insurance

A member of Ebony’s Power 100, Yancy, for years, has a proven track record for leveraging marketing, consumer insights and digital innovation for brands such as Ford, Burger King, and for the near decade, American Family Insurance.

48) Shanise (King) Anderson, brand management, Johnson & Johnson

Anderson has worked in CPG and fashion brand management since the early 2000s, on Revlon, Levi Strauss, Co. and L’Oreal. Since coming to Johnson & Johnson in 2015, she’s been in charge of the Aveeno Body master brand and its equity.

49) Artemis Berry, vice-president, National Retail Federation

Berry has worked for the National Retail Federation (and for more than 10 years and accumulated more than 15 years of retail marketing and business experience.

50) Madhavi Tadikonda, senior vice-president, investment, Canvas Worldwide

The agency strategy vet is fluent in all aspects of media investment, both traditional and digital. After spending over a decade at places like The Martin Agency and Initiative, she calls Canvas, a joint venture between Innocean and Horizon Media, home.

51) Margarita Golod, director of marketing, Houzz

Golod runs marketing strategies for house remodeling site Houzz. The Harvard MBA has worked for Google, Symantec, and Return Path, but now ensures that the 40 million visitors of the site continue to have affinity for the brand.

52) Gumala K. Steele, senior vice-president, Starcom

Steele brings almost 15 years of experience architecting and implementing consumer-centric communication in her role with Starcom. It was the media agency she started with right out of the University of Illinois, and excelled her way through to senior-level management.

53) Katherine Rizzuto, vice-president, Oracle Data Cloud, Oracle

Rizzuto has helped Oracle introduce "first to market" programs and technologies and developing productive and profitable sales teams. A published author, she wrote a children’s book called Poodles Don’t Play Tennis.

54) Natasha Mulla, formerly vice-president of marketing, Mashable, now CMO MoviePass

Mulla brings about 10 years of experience in media marketing, half of it with the Mashable staff. Her role is to build and grow a digital media business in this very challenging environment for publishers. She is now the new chief marketing officer at MoviePass.

55) Claudia Huapaya, head of business strategy and operations, Rent the Runway

Huapaya managed a $800m P&L at AOL. At Rent the Runway, she leads business operations and strategy to continue to develop and cultivate the disruptive brand.

56) Rachel Law, founder, chief executive, Kip

Law has been working with online communities, especially teenage shopping communities, since she was 16. Now, she runs Kip, an AI assistant that aids in group shopping and e-commerce for that very market.

57) Keisha Lamothe, senior producer, Time Inc.

For the past 12 years, Lamothe has been a producer at Time Inc, and before that, the University of West Florida alum was on the broadcast side at CNN.

58) Aruna Paramasivam, data and partnerships, L'Oreal

Paramasivam has worked for companies such as MediaMath, Yahoo and AOL before joining the beauty brand. She brings with her over 15 years experience and expertise in data monetization, strategic partnerships, and CRM.

59) Josephine Munis, chief marketing officer, CandyLab AR

Munis is a metrics-driven marketer with a highly successful, decade-long marketing record. Aside from running marketing for the emerging tech company, she serves as president of the VR AR Association’s Los Angeles chapter.

60) Carol Cho, brand marketing, North America, Airbnb

Cho’s 18 years of experience as a creative leader and business builder have included some time as an entrepreneur. Now, as the brand marketing lead for Airbnb, she’s tasked with maintaining the brand’s voice and positioning across North America.

61) Kristen Koh Goldstein, founder, HireAthena

A co-founder of HireAthena; an Advisor to AngelList, Koh Goldstein helps companies transition from building and scaling a product, to building a cross-functional team. Sadly, many extraordinary startups fail to cross this chasm — she believes the blinders caused by sexism, racism and/or ageism is paralyzing.

62) Morin Oluwole, head of luxury, Facebook and Instagram

Oluwole, a Stanford and Columbia grad, is also a Facebook lifer, having worked for the company since 2006. She now heads up Instagram’s digital advertising relationships with luxury industry leaders via her base in France.

63) Suja Chandrasekaran, chief digital and information officer, Kimberly Clark

Previously in similar roles for Walmart and Timberland, Chandrasekaran has led in both B2B/B2C environments. She’s a digital transformation leader who’s delivered results in eCommerce, AI, Cloud, APIs, platforms, IOT, smart products, eco-systems integration.

64) Emily Chang, chief marketing officer, Starbucks China

Chang understands name brands, culture, and experiences, spending over 18 years between hospitality brand IHG, Apple, and P&G. She joined Starbucks in June 2017, and has already made waves with innovations like the first in-store AR experience.

65) Carla Zakhem-Hassan, chief marketing officer, Toys R Us

20 years in marketing between top brands Kellogg’s and Pepsi have laid the foundation for Zakhem-Hassan to lead the nation’s largest toy and games retail chain.

66) Kat Chung, director, advertising media, Red Bull

Chung built her media strategy chops at Initiative and ID Media before joining the energy drink manufacturer and sports lifestyle brand to help manage cross-platform storytelling.

67) Kimberly Cooper, director of marketing, Nestlé

Cooper is considered someone with a passion for innovation. She’s spent 15 years at Nestle, and before that, she held marketing roles at Oscar Meyer, Walt Disney World and Kraft.

68) Lynn Pina, chief marketing officer, GeoBlue

A Stanford grad who’s been a problem-solver for AOL, USA Today, and SiriusXM in her past, Pina presently leads marketing and brand strategy for the arm of Blue Cross Blue Shield that targets world travelers.

69) Trang Dam, director, brand content, Under Armour

A MICA grad, Dam has 12 years at Under Armour under her belt, executing and ensuring top-tier branded content on a global scale for the sporting goods brand.

70) Yoonie Park, director, global advertising, Michael Kors

An alum of both BBDO and Calvin Klein, Park oversee global marketing strategic development and planning to help drive Micheal Kors’ brand awareness and affinity, and isn’t afraid to inject fun and lightheartedness into work.

71) Rashmy Chatterjee, chief marketing officer, IBM NA

In a past life, she was the first-ever female engineer in India’s naval forces. Now, Chatterjee, a 20-year IBM veteran leads marketing, communications, and citizenship for IBM in North America.

72) Solange (Montesinos) Claudio, president, Moxie

Claudio’s professional experience spans across online media and CRM, to social, mobile and technology platforms and solutions. She’s able to steward Atlanta-based Moxie’s cross-functional teams in marketing communications initiatives.

73) Peggy Byrd, senior vice-president, iHeartMedia

A 20-plus year industry veteran, Byrd has worked in sales for radio, television, and publishing, for the likes of TV One, Conde Nast, and the Ad Council. She currently leads multicultural strategy for iHeartMedia’s 250 and counting million listeners.

74) Michele Fino, chief marketing officer,

Michele has over 18 years of marketing, content strategy, branding and client management experience. In her role, Fino helps young people take charge have impact in their communities, and “kick ass” in a positive way.

75) Marissa Nance, managing director, OMD USA

Nance has represents client’s interests in her current role with the Omnicom media agency since 2016. Her high-profile media partners include Viacom, TVOne, Univision, NBC/Universal Comcast, Mark Burnett Productions and Time Warner.

76) Jessica Rodriguez, executive consultant, OTT strategy, Riehl Insights

A former Netflix vice-president of content distribution, Rodriguez has time spent at BBC, NBC Universal, and National Geographic, and ensures quality programming reaches global audiences

77) America Lopez and Penelope Lopez, The Cybercode Twins

These award-winning Latina twin sisters born and raised in East Los Angeles, have conquered hackathons from NASA, AT&T, IBM. Now they’re on a mission to make communities safer through wearable tech and mobile apps.

Special thanks to the following for sharing these talented women: Deborah Morrison, University of Oregon; Caitlin Copple Masingill, Oliver Russell; Elke Govertsen, Mamalode; Isabella Masiello, Powell; Alysha Light, Flight PR, Lauren Gumport, Playbuzz; Anjelica Triola, Skill Committee; Nat Guevara, Genius; Erinn Farrell, The On Being Project; Tracy Brady, Hill Holliday; Gaby May, Stan Usovicz + Daniel Schloss, Double E Communications; Isabelle du Plessis, The Mill; Brittany Fero, PB&; Meagan Phillips, Framestore; Britta Petersen, Epsilon; Kelly Vogt Campbell, Harmonica; Alicia Hatch, Deloitte Digital; Steve Stratz; Relevanz Public Relations; Diane Anderson, Wit Strategy; Martina Suess, Wunderman; Sanasjia Clervoix, N6A; Julian McBride, Droga5; Mack McKelvey, SalientMG & The Credentialed; Allison Meyer, Wise Public Relations; Adam Levine, The Lucy Collective; David Sable; Young & Rubicam

Additional reporting by Bennett D. Bennett.

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