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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 msoat@ama.org.


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 mweingarden@ama.org.


2021-22 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.

Karen Albritton – Chairperson

Karen Albritton Chairperson Elect

Karen Albritton is an advisor to executives and leadership teams, helping them drive performance and growth. She’s CEO of Walk West, a full-service marketing and branding firm and a partner at Thinc Strategy.

Previously, Albritton 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.

In 2018, Albritton 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.

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 International Collegiate Conference.

Albritton 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.

H. Rao UnnavaChairperson-Elect

H. Rao Unnava Secretary

Dean H. Rao 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. 

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. 

Lisa BowmanSecretary

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 after a 15-year career at UPS.  Bowman 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, Bowman 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 Bowman as their MARKETER OF THE YEAR in December 2019. She was also honored by the American Marketing Association as their 2017 Nonprofit 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.

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

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.

Immediate Past Chairperson – Katherine N. Lemon

Kay Lemon - Chairperson

Katherine (Kay) Lemon is the Accenture Professor of Marketing at Boston College’s Carroll School of Management.  She is a globally recognized expert in understanding key drivers of firm growth from a customer perspective; developing 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, the Journal of Marketing Research 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.”

Lemon 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 including IBM/Lenovo, AirTran, CRMC, GfK, WOMMA, and Copernicus Marketing (now part of Isobar).  Lemon 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 the Carroll School Promotion and Tenure Committee.

Peter Barber

Peter Barber is a transformative marketing and branding executive recognized for success in leading innovative and comprehensive marketing, communications, and branding strategies. His work has primarily been focused in the higher education, nonprofit, and retail sectors. Barber is a past co-chair of the AMA’s Higher Education Marketing Symposium, where he led the volunteer planning committee in revamping the Symposium’s programming for greater appeal to senior decision-makers, making the experience more relevant and attractive to new attendees. He is also a past chair of the AMA Nonprofit Marketing Conference, where he and his team’s work generated the largest participation in the event’s history. 

Barber has worked for a number of prestigious marketing and advertising companies, including DDB, Campbell Mithun, Budget Car & Truck Rental, and the Leo Burnett Company. He most recently was Executive Vice President for Lipman Hearne, a Chicago-based marketing agency working exclusively with nonprofit organizations.  

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.

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.

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 Jet.com, 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.  

David Edelman

David Edelman’s leadership in driving strategic digital and marketing change over the past 25 years – as a top CMO and as a Strategic Consultant — has made him a sought-after advisor on digitization, go-to-market strategy, branding, marketing organization, and agile operations. From his earlier work for clients such as JPMorganChase, SAP, American Express, Verizon, IBM, Kohl’s, and McDonalds, he developed and popularized foundational concepts such as “The Customer Decision Journey,” and “Segment-of-One Marketing.”  Most recently, he guided Aetna (now part of CVS Health), through the complex strategy, investment, and change management issues involved in becoming a digitally-oriented, customer-centric enterprise. Edelman has been repeatedly recognized by Forbes as one of the “Most Influential CMOs in the World,” and by AdWeek as one of the “Top 20 Marketing and Technology Executives.”  His writing and work has attracted over 1.1 million followers to his LinkedIn blog. He has delivered dozens of keynote presentations at conferences around the world, and has coached executive clients and peers on stage presence, team building, and developing agility in their organizations. 

For the last four years (until September, 2020), Edelman served as Chief Marketing Officer of Aetna, now part of the $200B healthcare giant CVS Health, and ran CVS Health’s “Digital First” enterprise modernization program. He drove a broad transformation at Aetna, implementing real-time analytics and agile operations in a company where marketing had been merely a functional cost center.  He led the rebranding of the 166 year-old company, and brought its marketing technology into the digital age. By rebuilding Aetna’s go-to-market operations as faster cycle “war rooms” that constantly test and learn, he accelerated the growth of its Medicare business, adding billions in revenues. Using advanced marketing to improve members’ health behaviors, his team cracked the code of moving the needle in saving millions of dollars in medical cost.  

A proven change agent, Edelman built multi-million dollar practices for The Boston Consulting Group, Digitas (now part of Publicis Groupe), and then for McKinsey & Company, all based on guiding clients through global digital transformation initiatives. Responding to CEOs’ anxieties about how to compete in a digitizing economy, David guided the strategy development, and led the implementation of programs that injected new technology, built organization capabilities, and captured value for his clients through fresh in-market execution.   

As a consultant, Edelman frequently advised clients’ boards of directors, and coached top executives on critical board-level issues. Before the CVS acquisition, he worked with Aetna’s board to guide decisions on brand direction, customer experience investment, and expansion of digital marketing.  Edelman is a member of the Board of Trustees, and Strategy Committee of The Walnut Hill School for the Arts, and the Executive Board of the Boston Ad Club, the oldest marketing association in the country. Through his strategic guidance, both organizations are transforming their missions, expanding their reach with a range of new digital and community services.  

The Harvard Business Review featured his cover story on Branding in the Digital Age, and a follow-up article Competing on Customer Journeys.  These have become core reading at business schools and in many marketing departments. He has spoken at top digital, marketing, health and technology conferences world-wide, and is helping to shape the future of marketing on the “Growth Master” council of the Association of National Advertisers.    

Edelman has an AB in Economics, and an MBA, from Harvard University. 

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.

Jessica Perry

An accomplished and groundbreaking leader in digital products, membership and subscription models, Jessica Perry has more than 25 years of experience directing the online initiatives for major media operations and non-profits, bridging technology, content and change management to grow revenue and transform business operations.

As principal of Six Doors Media, Perry is a consultant and advisor to organizations looking to reorganize legacy operations, set new cultural norms, strategies, customer engagement models and partnerships. 

From 2014-2019, Perry was Chief Digital Officer and head of publishing for the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), the leading expert, convener and thought leader on issues impacting HR and today’s evolving workplaces.  As CDO, Perry was responsible for advancing digital services transformation at SHRM, overseeing a 53-person staff and its award-winning news, content and creative services operations, while significantly enhancing digital revenue through innovative advertising and reseller relationships. During this time, she more than doubled online media revenues and website traffic and engagement, helping establish SHRM as a voice at large for workplace issues and the future of work. As acting CIO, she helped with transitional technology leadership, overseeing significant infrastructure upgrades.  

From 2015-2019, Perry served on the executive committee and as chairperson of the Software and Information Industry Association, the principal trade group and public policy representative for B2B content and data providers. 

Earlier experience included senior management roles advancing the digital footprint for many leading B2C brands, including Atlantic Media’s National Journal, Conde Nast properties and The Wall Street Journal Online.  Perry began her career laying the interactive future for Dow Jones, in positions spanning marketing, business development, product development and editorial.  

Perry has been on the advisory boards of early stage SaaS and media companies. She has been a frequent speaker on the subject of digital media transformation and the future of work.  

She is a trustee of the Princeton-Blairstown Center, which provides adventure-based social-emotional learning to low income students, and has also been active on a volunteer basis in organizations that provide career training and counseling to the low-income unemployed.  She was also a founding member of the New Jersey Coalition for Medical Marijuana.  

Ms. Perry holds Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in journalism from Northwestern University. 

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.

Robin Tooms

Robin Tooms has spent her 20+-year professional career ascending from a variety of roles – from creative and design, to leading strategy for clients and serving as a virtual CMO, to an in-house CMO for a leading financial institution. As an innovative marketer, she has deep expertise in areas including B2B, corporate and product branding, digital marketing and marketing automation, and integrated brand and marketing strategies. Over the years, she has gained a reputation for driving initiatives that capture millions of dollars in brand value and new revenue opportunities.

Tooms firmly believes that everyone has a responsibility to support the community that helped their personal and professional success. Her mission has been twofold: create awareness and value for our design and marketing communities, and to support the organizations and students that will shape the next generation of professionals. To do this, she regularly volunteers for board and leadership positions with organizations, including the American Marketing Association (AMA).

She holds an MBA with a concentration in Marketing Management from Rice University, in addition to a BFA in Graphic Communications from the University of Houston.

Tiffany White

Tiffany Barnett White is Associate Professor of Business Administration and Advertising and Bruce and Anne Strohm Faculty Fellow in the Gies College of Business at the University of Illinois. She serves as Academic Director of the Master of Science in Management program at Gies and Faculty Athletics Representative for the University of Illinois. She received a Ph.D. in marketing from Duke University and BS and MS degrees in Advertising from the University of Illinois.

Her research addresses affective and behavioral aspects of consumer-brand relationships with a particular emphasis on the drivers and outcomes of consumer (dis)trust. White has presented on the topic of branding and brand strategy to national and international audiences. Her research on the “Brand Connected Consumer” is a featured TEDx presentation. She is an award-winning teacher and is consistently featured on the University-wide list of faculty rated as excellent by their students. 

White served as Secretary-Treasurer for the Society for Consumer Psychology, At-Large Director for the Association for Consumer Research and as ACR Co-Chair. She is a member of the Editorial Board for the Journal of Consumer Psychology, the Journal of Consumer Research, Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, the Journal of Public Policy and Marketing, and the Journal of Service Research.