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AMA Leadership

AMA Executive Team

Russ Klein

Chief Executive Officer

Russell Klein has quarterbacked teams for many of the world’s foremost brand names—holding top marketing and advertising posts at Dr Pepper/7UP Companies, Gatorade, 7-Eleven Corporation, Burger King Corporation, and Arby’s Restaurant Group.

His Burger King body of work that was recognized by ADWEEK as “The Advertiser of the Decade” for the 2000’s…a distinction belonging to Nike and Budweiser in previous decades. Klein was again recognized as a seminal influence behind Burger King’s recognition at this year’s Cannes ad festival as Creative Marketer of the Year in 2017; referencing a few of his most popular campaigns including:

Burger King’s groundbreaking digital campaign, “Subservient Chicken

  • ranked as the 6th greatest campaign of 21st Century by Ad Age
  • and Digital Ad of the Decade by the Wall Street Journal

Klein was responsible for “Whopper Freakout” 

  • the highest recalled advertising campaign ever measured by Nielsen’s IAG Research among all advertisers

As CEO for the American Marketing Association, Russ is charged with the transformation of the AMA to become the essential community for marketers.

  • Klein was once nicknamed “Flamethrower” by an industry publication for his managerial risk-taking and provocative advertising; but he now aspires to be the torch bearer for all marketers.

Jeremy Van Ek

Chief Operating Officer

As Chief Operations Officer at the American Marketing Association, Van Ek leads AMA’s financial, operational and human resource strategies.

Van Ek comes to the AMA with more than 15 years of experience in the marketing industry, including working at Edelman, Arc Worldwide and most recently Trisect, where he was the Chief Financial Officer.

Adara Bowen

Vice President, Growth

Prior to her current role, Adara was a champion for the launch and rollout of the AMA brand across its global support center, 70+ professional chapters and 350+ collegiate chapters. She also played a strategic role in the association’s recent technology transformation. 

Adara is no stranger to brand transformation. Prior to the AMA, she worked across account management, brand strategy, business development and marketing at well-known branding firms Landor and Kaleidoscope. She has contributed to delivering and winning work for companies like Procter & Gamble, Kraft Heinz, Kohler, Dow, ConAgra, Newell Brands, Elmer’s, Bell’s Brewery, Fairlife, Hospira, Delhaize America and others.

Julie Schnidman

Vice President, Alliances

Julie has always believed in the power of partnerships to create transformational change. As Vice President of the Alliances team, Julie leads the advertising and sponsorship efforts of the AMA, ensuring that our B2B partners find the right platform to share their unique solution with our engaged audience of marketers. She is also grateful to oversee the AMA Foundation, which celebrates marketers who have made an impact in their community and supports the next generation of marketing leaders.

Prior to her work at the AMA, Julie served in business development, grants administration and client services roles within corporate and nonprofit organizations. 

Molly Soat

Vice President, Professional Development

As the Vice President of Professional Development, Molly oversees a team of production and programming experts that strategize, curate and create experiences to drive employable skills and personal growth for our marketing community. In her eight-year tenure at the AMA, Molly has served in creative and leadership roles for the AMA’s practitioner publication, Marketing News.

Prior to her work at the AMA, Molly was the editor in charge of magazines spanning business and architectural design verticals. She’s always looking for good book recommendations, and can be reached at

Matt Weingarden

Vice President, Communities and Journals

A fan of AMA and Marketing history, Matt Weingarden appreciates the tradition, passion and innovative spirit that are hallmarks of the AMA’s three broad communities and four journals. As Vice President, Communities & Journals, Matt is grateful to support the AMA’s network of community leaders and get-it-done volunteers. Since joining the AMA, Matt helped reenergize the academic community and led a journal production transformation in partnership with SAGE Publishing.

Matt has worked in volunteer management and marketing roles at internationally recognized universities, traditional membership associations and municipal government. If you know any AMA trivia, please share it by emailing

Board of Directors

The AMA Board of Directors is a group of volunteer leaders who are impactful visionaries in marketing. They provide insight and guidance as the AMA works to become the essential community for marketers.

Kay Lemon, Chairperson

Katherine (Kay) Lemon holds the Accenture Professorship and is a Professor of Marketing in the Carroll School of Management at Boston College, where she also served as Chair of the Marketing Department.  She is a globally recognized expert in understanding key drivers of firm growth from a customer perspective, with an increasing focus on digital. She has developed models of customer experience, customer loyalty and customer equity that enable firms to significantly increase return on marketing investments. She is currently Chairperson of the Board of Directors of the AMA.

Her research appears in leading marketing journals including the Journal of Marketing, Journal of Marketing Research, Marketing Science, Management Science, and the Journal of Service Research. She has received numerous awards for her research, including the Sheth Foundation/Journal of Marketing Award, the Lehmann Award, the Davidson Award, and the Berry AMA Book Award. She is the past editor of the Journal of Service Research. She serves on the editorial boards of the Journal of Marketing and the Journal of Service Research. She is an AMA Lifetime Fellow. She received the Christopher Lovelock Career Contributions to the Services Discipline Award, the Early Career Contributions to Marketing Strategy Research Award, the Elsevier Research Scholar of the Year Award, and is a member of the PhD Project’s “Circle of Champions.”

She serves on the Board of Directors of Maple Leaf Foods, Inc., a leading Canadian consumer packaged proteins company, where she is a member of the Audit Committee and the Safety and Sustainability Committee.   She is also a Distinguished Faculty Fellow for the Center for Excellence in Service, and an Academic Fellow for the Center for Services Leadership. Previously, she served as an at-large member of the Board of Directors of the AMA, and as Executive Director, Board member and Academic Trustee of the Marketing Science Institute. She has also served on the Marketing Advisory Board for Harte Hanks, the International Academic Advisory Panel for the Institute of Service Excellence at Singapore Management University, and on a variety of corporate advisory boards. Kay has taught and consulted with leading global companies in many industries (including consumer packaged goods, retailing, digital, health care, financial services, high tech, and telecom). At Boston College, she serves on the Council for Women Colloquium Advisory Board, and, most recently, the Carroll School Promotion and Tenure Committee.

Stacy Armijo, Immediate Past Chairperson

Stacy Armijo is Chief Experience Officer for Amplify Credit Union, a credit union in the Austin area with almost $2 billion in assets under management. She is responsible for marketing and communications; retail delivery, including branches, contact center and consumer lending; the payment and operations department; human resources & training; and social impact in the community. She joined Amplify in mid-2018 and previously spent 17 years with Pierpont Communications, one of Texas’ largest independent public relations and marketing firms, lastly as Executive Vice President.

Stacy is also active in her profession with a long tenure of service to the American Marketing Association (AMA). Currently she is Immediate Past Chairperson of the Board of Directors and previously, she served on the organization’s Audit & Finance Committee, as President of its Professional Chapters Council and as President of the Austin chapter, among other roles over 15 years of involvement. Beyond AMA, Stacy has been active in the industry in other ways, such as serving as a Lecturer teaching Public Relations Strategies at the University of Texas at Austin for three years and winning the “Austin Under 40 Award” for Advertising, Marketing and Public Relations.

Outside her profession, Stacy is involved in various aspects of the Austin community and was named a “Woman of Influence” by the Austin Business Journal. Currently, she serves on the Boards of Directors for the Austin Chamber of Commerce, American Red Cross of Central Texas, Greater Austin Crime Commission and Austin Area Research Organization. In addition, she is a graduate of the Emerge and Essential programs of Leadership Austin.

Stacy earned a bachelor’s degree in public relations from the University of Texas at Austin and speaks regularly about public relations, marketing, leadership and community service.

Karen Albritton, Chairperson-Elect

Karen is an advisor to executives of emerging growth and mid-market companies, helping them drive performance and growth. At Thinc Strategy, she’s part of an experienced team of consultants who operate as strategic partners – working alongside business owners, executive leadership teams, and corporate boards – to develop and execute real strategies for measurable growth and change. The firm has helped over 140 companies in 26 countries boost their business value and elevate the people they employ.

Prior to joining Thinc Strategy, Karen was an executive with marketing services firms such as Ketchum, Capstrat and McKinney. In a decade as Capstrat President and then CEO, she helped grow the agency from a 20-person firm into an award-winning market leader. Among her accomplishments are a number of innovations: launching analytics, digital and social media services as well as building a national healthcare practice. She’s been a part of eight acquisitions, both as an acquirer and in successful exits, including the Capstrat sale to Omnicom.

Karen is a marketing industry advocate, serving on the board of directors for the American Marketing Association. In 2018, she was recognized as the AMA National Chapter Volunteer of the Year. She served as president of the Triangle chapter, leading the chapter to a Silver Chapter Excellence Award and continues to volunteer on the chapter’s past-presidents’ council. She was a member of the AMA Professional Chapters Council for five years, serving as AMA Leadership Summit co-chair and PCC president in 2013/14.

She has been a presenter at the Internet Summit, the PRSA Counselors Academy Annual Conference, the AMA Non-Profit Marketing Conference, the International Women’s Forum-Carolinas Chapter, AMA Symposium on Higher Education Marketing and at the AMA Collegiate Conference. She also speaks to corporate audiences for companies like Credit Suisse, Vanderbilt Health, Cotton, Incorporated and Siemens.

Karen is actively engaged in industry and community organizations.  Current board service includes the National Association for Corporate Directors-Research Triangle, and the UNC Health Foundation (audit and executive committees). She earned her B.A. degree in Journalism and Political Science at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Rao Unnava, Secretary

H. Rao Unnava is currently Dean, Graduate School of Management, at University of California, Davis. Dean Unnava’s research focuses on issues related to brand loyalty, consumer response to advertising and sales promotions and consumer memory. His work has appeared in the Journal of Marketing Research, Journal of Consumer Research, Marketing Letters, Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, Journal of International Consumer Marketing and Advances in Consumer Research. He is on the editorial review boards of the Journal of Consumer Research and Journal of Consumer Psychology.

Unnava’s teaching experience includes courses at the undergraduate and graduate levels, including marketing management and strategy, marketing research, consumer behavior, promotional strategy, human memory processes and international marketing. He was named Outstanding Undergraduate Teacher by the student chapter of American Marketing Association seven times, won the Westerbeck Undergraduate teaching award twice, and was awarded the Bostic‐Georges service award in 2014.

Unnava joined the Graduate School of Management in June 2016 following 32 years at The Ohio State University’s Fisher College of Business, where he earned his Ph.D. and most recently served as the W. Arthur Cullman professor of marketing.  At the Fisher College of Business, Unnava also served as the associate dean of undergraduate programs, associate dean of executive education, and director of doctoral programs in business.

Unnava is also one of the founders of Angie’s List. He is currently on the board of directors of the American Marketing Association, Pride Industries, and the Bay Area Council.

Unnava earned his Ph.D. in business administration from The Ohio State University’s Fisher College of Business, his Post Graduate Diploma in management from the Indian Institute of Management Calcutta, and his B.Tech. in electronics engineering from Jawaharlal Nehru Technological University.

Dennis R. James, Treasurer

Dennis James is the Chief Financial Officer of the Greater Chicago Food Depository.  He joined the organization in late 2015, is the Treasurer of the board of directors and leads all finance and accounting activities.

Mr. James has spent his professional career in the Chicagoland area, mostly in the banking and insurance industries – working with both Citibank NA and CNA Insurance.   Since 2005, he has worked in the global not-for-profit arena for both religious and membership organizations.

Born in St. Cloud, Minnesota, he attended St. Cloud State University and earned his Bachelor’s degree in Finance, with a minor in Speech Communications.  He then spent a summer in Crested Butte, Colorado maintaining ski lifts and relaxing before earning his Master’s degree in international finance from Thunderbird in Glendale, Arizona.  Mr. James is also a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) in the State of Illinois.

He resides in Palatine, Illinois with his wife Sheryl and their three children.

Gail Zank

Dr. Gail Zank is a Professor of Marketing in the McCoy College of Business at Texas State University. She is also the Coordinator of the MS in Marketing Research and Analysis Program at Texas State. She holds a BS from Marquette University and an MBA and Ph.D. from Texas A&M University. Her research is in the area of public policy. Zank has published in many journals including the Journal of Public Policy & Marketing, the European Journal of Marketing and the Journal of Consumers Affairs.  

Dr. Zank is the current Chairperson of the American Marketing Association Foundation Board of Advisors. She served for eight years as a member of the American Marketing Association Collegiate Chapters Council, including serving as President. She serves on many committees at the department, school, university and professional level. Dr. Zank is a past Editor for the Marketing Management Journal and an ad hoc reviewer for several journals and numerous conferences within her field. Dr. Zank is the current Treasurer for the Marketing Management Association. Dr. Zank also has presented many executive development workshops on topics including Leading the Sales Team, Trends in Distribution, Customer Focused Marketing and Using Continuous Improvement Tools.

Dr. Zank has been an advisor to student groups such as American Marketing Association, PAID (Professional Association for Industrial Distribution) and Pi Sigma Epsilon (national business fraternity) her entire academic career. Dr. Zank received the American Marketing Association Outstanding Faculty Advisor Award and also was recognized as Outstanding Faculty Advisor in the Nation by Pi Sigma Epsilon. In March 2015, Zank was recognized for her contribution to the American Marketing Association with the awarding of the Faculty Advisor Lifetime Achievement Award.   

Dr. Zank teaches both graduate and undergraduate classes. These classes include Marketing Research, Principles of Marketing, Global Marketing and the Value Chain, Marketing Management, and the American Marketing Association (AMA) Student Case Competition Class.  Dr. Zank received the McCoy College of Business Teaching Excellence Award in 2006. In addition, she has been a runner-up for the Texas State University Presidential Excellence Award for Teaching several times.

Diana O’Brien

As the chief marketing officer for Deloitte’s US and global organization, Diana O’Brien leads the network’s marketing leaders in helping to drive growth, build world-class creative and analytics capabilities, and champion the voice of the customer. Appointed in 2015 as the first chief marketing officer for the US, she reimagined marketing when she combined independent functions (including client programs, regions, industries, research, eminence, social corporate responsibility, sales, pursuits, public policy, and client experiences) with PR, communications, digital and marketing to create a cohesive, agile client-centric organization. With responsibility to amplify the firm, she focuses on enabling our leaders and aligning our execution to our global strategy and brand purpose to make a greater impact.

Over the course of her 32 years as a life sciences and health care consulting professional, she has held numerous leadership roles, including global client portfolio leader, global lead client service partner and global consulting leader for two global life sciences clients, and US managing principal for Deloitte University (DU), leading the 700,000 square-foot, $300 million leadership center. As the managing principal for DU and talent development, she was responsible for industry and professional learning, leadership development, leader succession, community and inclusion engagement. She continues to lead the C-Suite CMO Program, and serves as an advisory partner to several life sciences and public-sector clients.  She serves on the US executive committee, global, clients & industries council, societal impact council, and brand council, and leads the global marketing council. Previously, she served on the global executive committee, consulting board of directors, and diversity council. 

Diana has been included in Business Insider’s “Top 50 Most Innovative CMOs in the World,” Forbes’ World’s Most Influential CMOs, Leading Women Inc., Leaders Magazine and Cincinnati’s 40 Under 40.

Her passion extends to charities related to autism and diversity. She is the chairman and founder of IMPACT Autism, a forward-thinking organization that creates and delivers life management solutions to combat the educational, emotional, and social challenges of living with autism.  She has received several community awards from Autism Society, Applied Behavioral Services, Every Child Succeeds, FRED, and Cincinnati Center for Autism.

Diana holds an MBA in finance and a BS in behavioral management from Xavier University.

Roger Adams

Roger Adams recently retired from USAA after serving as their Chief Marketing Officer for over 7 years.

Roger has over 35 years of marketing experience, spanning consumer packaged goods, durables and retail industries. He previously served as Chief Marketing Officer at Lord & Taylor, and The Home Depot, and as Executive Director of U.S. advertising and marketing at General Motors. He began his career in product management at Pepsico. Roger currently operates a marketing consultancy, Pragmax, LLC.

Roger holds a bachelor’s degree from Northwestern University in Communication Studies, and an MBA degree in Marketing from New York University.  He has been a long-time member of the Board of the Association of National Advertisers and has served as Chairman of its Brand Management Committee. Roger previously served as a Board Member of the NY chapter of the AMA.

Lisa Bowman

Lisa Bowman is the founder and Chief Mojo Officer (CMO) of Marketing Mojo. She most recently served as United Way Worldwide’s Chief Marketing Officer leading the organization’s efforts to create, develop and implement global marketing strategies highlighting the organization’s image and 130 -year history of galvanizing donors, advocates, volunteers and workplace partners to fight for the health, education, and financial stability of every person in every community. 

She joined United Way Worldwide from a 15- year career at UPS.  Lisa began her career with UPS in 2000 as Vice President of Market Development for UPS e-Ventures, the company’s dot-com incubator. In subsequent senior level marketing roles with the logistics company, she led several high-profile marketing initiatives designed to transform UPS from its historical position as a business -to -business entity into a business-to- business- to -consumer entity.

Following UPS’ 2001 acquisition of the former Mail Boxes, Etc. network of nearly 4,000 franchised locations, Lisa led the integration and re-branding to The UPS Store™.  In 2009, she developed and launched UPS Direct-to Door, a co-op media product intended to compete with direct mail. She then took as role in The UPS Foundation, where as part of her $80 million social investment portfolio she also oversaw the transportation company’s United Way campaign.

Target Marketing Magazine recognized Lisa as their MARKETER OF THE YEAR in December 2019. She was also honored by the American Marketing Association as their 2017 Non-Profit Marketer of the Year. Her work has received numerous awards inclusive of the Harvey Communications Awards, multiple Gold Stevie® Awards, multiple PRNews Awards, and multiple Gold MarComm awards. The PSA campaign she launched on behalf of United Way in her inaugural year was recognized as PSA of the Year by PRNews. Under her leadership, United Way’s research team also received a DigitalEdge 50 Award for PerformanceLink; the organization’s first Business Intelligence tool.

Lisa holds a B.A. in Marketing from Columbia and has completed executive education at Emory University’s Goizueta School of Business.

Bernard Jaworski

Bernie is the Peter F. Drucker Chair of Management and Liberal Arts at the Peter F. Drucker and Masatoshi Ito School of Management at Claremont Graduate University. Prior to this appointment he was the Executive Vice President, IMD, North America.  He previously was a Full Professor of Marketing at the University of Southern California.

He is recipient of the three major Journal of Marketing awards – the Alpha Kappa Psi award for best managerial article (received twice), the Harold Maynard award for best theoretical contribution, and the Jagdish Sheth award for long term contributions to the discipline. He is also the recipient of the Vijay Mahajan AMA lifetime achievement award for his research on marketing strategy. His research is largely centered on how to build market driven companies.

For ten years Bernie was senior partner at Monitor Group advising clients on their human resource development, leadership approaches, and go-to-market strategies. In this capacity he played a senior partner role in guiding several organization-wide marketing transformations of several Fortune 500 firms. He also advises leading firms (e.g., the redesign of GE’s Crotonville) on their overall approach to human capital and leadership development.

Michael Brady

Michael (“Mike”) Brady is the Bob Sasser Professor and chair, Department of Marketing, at Florida State University. He is also an affiliated faculty member or honorary professor at six universities around the world.

Mike’s primary research interest lies at the intersection of customers and employees in frontline service transactions. He has published articles in many top scholarly journals, including Journal of Service Research, Journal of Marketing, Journal of Consumer Research, Journal of Retailing, Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, International Journal of Research in Marketing, and many other outlets.

His research articles have been cited over 23,000 times to date and his work has been covered in numerous popular press outlets, such as MSNBC, U.S. News, the Chicago Tribune, and Tampa Bay Times.

He has won numerous awards, including the Christopher Lovelock Career Contributions to the Service Discipline Award and the inaugural College of Business Distinguished Teacher award. 

Mike is a past president of the American Marketing Association’s Academic Council and an Associate Editor for the Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science. He is the current Editor‐ in‐Chief of Journal of Service Research, which has one of the highest impact factors of all business journals.

Kevin Bradford

Kevin D. Bradford is a teaching professor of marketing at the University of California, Irvine and has been at UCI for one and one half years.  Previous to UCI, professor Bradford was a professor at the University of Notre Dame for 17 years.

He conducts research on developing understanding of significant issues within the marketing system and its relationship to society.  This system can be viewed as consisting of three sets of actors – marketers, customers, and public policymakers.  To this point his work has centered on all three; the marketing domain (e.g., salespeople and the development of relationships), the customer domain (e.g., buyer-seller relationships), and public policy domain (e.g., firearm diversion).  Thus, his research to date can be more specifically summarized in terms of three streams; the factors affecting salesperson performance in the development and maintenance of buyer seller relationships, the development of effective distribution channel relationships, and marketing’s impacts on society.  Though the majority of his research is on the factors affecting the role of the salesperson in developing close buyer seller relationships, the stream of research mentioned last (marketing’s impact on society) is predicated, mostly, on the factors affecting the leakage of firearms into criminal markets in the United States.

Kevin received an “Excellence in Sales Scholarship Award” from the American Marketing Association’s special interest group supporting research in the selling and sales management. He also received the honorable mention award for the “Best Paper Contributing to Theory and Practice to Retail Marketing”.

Kevin teaches numerous different topics across the marketing spectrum at UCI; marketing research, sales management, digital marketing, advertising, and strategic marketing.

Kevin received his B.A. from the University of Northern Iowa, His M.B.A. from the University of Notre Dame, and his Ph.D. from the University of Florida.

His wife, Tonya, is also a professor at University of California, Irvine and holds three degrees from Northwestern University. He has two sons; Kevin II (23 years of age) and Zachary (11). 

Ajay Kohli

Ajay K. Kohli is Regents’ Professor and Gary T. and Elizabeth R. Jones Chair at Georgia Tech.  His research focuses on market orientation, customer solutions, sales management and B2B marketing.

Professor Kohli is a former Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Marketing. He currently serves as an Associate Editor of Journal of Marketing, and Area Editor of International Journal of Research in Marketing.  

He is among the 100 most cited authors in the fields of Business and Economics combined in a decade. Two of his articles are among the 10 most cited Journal of Marketing articles in a quarter century. 

Dr. Kohli received the prestigious AMA/McGraw-Hill/Irwin award in 2017. He received the Paul D. Converse award in 2016. He has received three honorary doctorates—from BI Norwegian Business School, the University of St. Gallen, Switzerland and from Corvinus University of Budapest. He is a recipient of IIM Calcutta’s Distinguished Alumnus Award 2017. He is an AMA Fellow, EMAC Fellow, and ISBM Fellow. He is also a recipient of the Mahajan award for career contributions to marketing strategy, and one of three 25-year Consortium Fellow Excellence award recipients for his year.

He has received several “best paper” awards. He is the first (and to date the only) two-time recipient of the Sheth Foundation / Journal of Marketing award. In addition, he has received the ISBM-Wilson-Sheth Award, the Alpha Kappa Psi “best paper” award (MSI/Paul Root award), the Sheth “best paper” award, and the AMA SERVSIG “best paper” award for his research articles.

He has previously taught at Emory University, Harvard Business School and The University of Texas at Austin. He has also taught at the BI Norwegian Business School, HSN, Norway, University of Muenster, Germany, Singapore Management University, SDA Bocconi, Italy, and WHU, Germany. He has led numerous executive education seminars in the U.S., Europe, Asia, and Latin America.  He has taught at the undergraduate, MBA, EMBA, and Ph.D. levels, and has been recognized several times for teaching excellence, including with the College-wide Jack G. Taylor Teaching Excellence Award at UT-Austin.

Professor Kohli served as the founding Associate Dean and Director of the doctoral program in Business at Emory University. In this capacity, he was responsible for launching the doctoral program, recruiting students, developing operating processes, and ongoing administration.

Dr. Kohli worked in industry for six years in sales & distribution management, and in marketing strategy consulting. His last business employer was Monitor Company where he served as Group Leader. He has also consulted with several companies including 3M, Accenture, Andersen, Coca-Cola, Dow Chemical, Eastman Kodak, The Forum Corporation, Halliburton, IBM, Shell, Texas Instruments, and the World Bank.  Dr. Kohli’s undergraduate degree is from IIT-Kharagpur, PGDM (MBA) from IIM-Calcutta and Ph.D. from the University of Pittsburgh.

Vanitha Swaminathan

Vanitha Swaminathan is Thomas Marshall Professor of Marketing at the University of Pittsburgh and the Director of the Katz Center for Branding. Her research focuses on branding strategy and the conditions that foster consumer-brand relationships. Professor Swaminathan has published in various leading marketing and management journals including Journal of Marketing, Journal of Marketing Research, Journal of Consumer Research, Marketing Science, and Strategic Management Journal. She is currently serving as Area Editor of Journal of Marketing. She has won awards for her research including the Lehmann Best Paper Award (twice), Journal of Advertising’s Best Paper Award, and has been selected as Marketing Science Institute’s Young Scholar.

Professor Swaminathan served as President of American Marketing Association’s Academic Council (2018-19), and is currently completing her term on the Executive Committee of Academic Council as Past President (2019-2020). During her term on AMA’s Academic Council Executive committee, she championed various conference, SIG and Journal-related initiatives to grow AMA’s academic membership and deepen member engagement. Prior to that, she served as Co-chair of the AMA Winter Educators’ Conference (2015), Chairperson of the Digital Marketing Certification taskforce of the American Marketing Association, and has successfully helped launch the AMA’s digital certification program.

Professor Swaminathan’s research and commentaries on branding and digital marketing are quoted in various international media outlets such as Forbes, The Miami Herald, Los Angeles Times, U.S. News & World Report, NPR, Sirius Radio, Science Daily, Slate, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Economic Times (India), Frontline (India), BBC Brasil (UK), and Último. She has worked with companies such as The Hershey Company, KraftHeinz, StarKist, AC Nielsen, GlaxoSmithKline, and P&G, on marketing and branding consulting projects. She has also extensively worked with small businesses on advising them regarding their digital marketing efforts.

Professor Vanitha Swaminathan has co-authored the Fifth Edition of the world-renowned textbook Strategic Brand Management: Building, Measuring, and Managing Brand Equity, along with Professor Kevin Lane Keller. At the University of Pittsburgh, she launched and is currently directing the Center for Branding which provides thought leadership, research and consulting to various leading companies on branding with a particular emphasis on brand management in a digital context.

Jacqui Canney

Jacqui Canney is the Global Chief People Officer for WPP, a creative transformation company that builds better futures for its people, clients and communities. 

In this role, she is responsible for WPP’s global talent organization, making WPP the destination for the industry’s top talent and for leading all aspects of people strategy, rewards, talent management, recruiting, and leadership development and learning. 

Passionate about inclusivity and diversity, Jacqui is creating an integrated talent team that will work with leaders throughout WPP to help build a new culture that empowers people to do their best work. 

Prior to joining WPP, she was Walmart’s Chief People Officer, where she was responsible for attracting, retaining and developing talent for one of the world’s largest private employers.  

As the primary designer of Walmart’s people strategy, Jacqui used her expertise in driving large-scale and complex change to help shape the future of retail. This included enabling the company’s more than two million employees to change how they work in today’s technology-driven environment, in support of Walmart’s goal of becoming a people-led, tech-empowered enterprise. She led the seamless workforce integration of Walmart’s acquisitions of many partners, including, Flipkart, DoorDash, Lord & Taylor, ModCloth, Moosejaw and Bonobos, among others.  

Jacqui serves as a board member for the American Marketing Association. She served as the co-chair of the World Economic Forum Future of Work Task Force and a member of the Rework America Business Network, and she participated in the Council on Foreign Relations 2018 Future of Work Task Force.  

Before Walmart, Jacqui worked at Accenture for 25 years where she played a pivotal role in helping support the rapid growth of the business – from 21,000 people to more than 300,000 – and net revenue growth of $1.4B to $32.9B.  

Jacqui earned a Bachelor of Science in accounting from Boston College and has remained active on campus guest lecturing, collaborating with professors and recruiting.  

Click here to view the candidates for office on the AMA Board of Directors and AMA councils in 2021-2022.