I believe in the unlimited potential of people and ideas. My work drives growth and transformation for some of the most powerful brands and businesses in the world. I build creative cultures and systems of impact that inspire people to surprise themselves with what they can achieve.
As President of Known, I co-founded and help lead a new kind of modern marketing company that uses science, technology and creativity to help some of the most innovative brands and businesses in the world achieve their goals.
Lunch Partners is the early stage venture fund I co-founded in 2018 as a vehicle for CEO’s and CMO’s to invest privately together in the most promising entrepreneurs. As General Partner, I serve on the fund’s investment committee, helping to oversee a growing portfolio of exciting young companies.
Jeen-Yuhs: A Kanye West Trilogy (Netflix); Countdown: The Inspiration4 Mission To Space (Netflix); Translating Genocide; MTV Woodie Awards (MTV); “Half Of Us” (MTV); “Stand In” (MTV). Upcoming: "Meal Ticket: The History of the McDonald's All-American Games" (Amazon Prime Video); "Deep Dive: The Greatest Music Stories Never Told" (with Universal Music Group); Untitled Toys'R'Us series project.
Future Legends of Advertising (Executive Producer & Co-Host) now in its second season from iHeart Media, features intimate conversations with living legends in advertising and the rising stars who are trailblazing its future. With special guests from the NBA, Google, State Farm, Meta, BET, General Motors and more. Fan Club (Executive Producer & Host) is a critically acclaimed six-part limited series by Paramount that explores the relationship between fans and the things we love, starring Charlamagne Tha God, Shepard Fairey, Swizz Beatz, and more, on Apple Podcasts. Think About This, With Shelly Palmer & Ross Martin, has been a top podcast on Apple, Spotify and Google, produced and distributed by Westwood One since 2019. The podcast challenges listeners to think differently about business, money, culture, technology and more, with guests who are titans of business, creativity and technology.
From 2017-2020, I was founder and CEO of Blackbird, a brand strategy and business innovation firm that used consumer intelligence, strategy, and breakthrough creative to solve problems, create opportunities, and propel growth for industry leaders and the challengers out to disrupt them. Our clients included AT&T, Warner Media, Citi, IMAX, Rockefeller Center, Entertainment One (now Hasbro), Fandango, Viacom, Disney and more. Blackbird was acquired by Schireson Associates in 2019, forming the basis of the company now known as Known.
I spent 13 years in creative and business leadership roles at Paramount, the global media and entertainment company operating in over 170 countries, most recently overseeing all Marketing Strategy, Data Strategy, Strategic Insights & Research, Audience Science, Innovation Lab, Catalyst (creative agency), and Business Development teams. As Chairman of the Viacom Marketing Council from 2015-2017, I led the portfolio’s global marketing priorities, which included Comedy Central’s South Park and The Daily Show, Nickelodeon and Paramount’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, TV Land’s Younger, CMT’s Nashville, and the award-winning “For All Fankind” campaign.
I joined Viacom in 2004 as the first Head of Programming for MTV's Emmy- and Peabody- Award winning college network, mtvU. In this role, I oversaw the development, production, and programming of original series, branded entertainment, music, events, and user-generated content for on-air, online, and mobile. Later, I became Senior Vice President of MTV 360 Production and Development, developing and producing content across MTV, MTV2, and mtvU. In 2009, I founded and ran Scratch, a strategic and brand consultancy within Viacom that channeled the power of MTV, VH1, Comedy Central, and Nickelodeon in new ways, including consumer insights, product development, design, branding, and original content development, production, and distribution in all media.
Prior to MTV, I founded Plant Film, a Los Angeles-based production company partnered with Fox, VH1, and Miramax; served as VP of Film & Television for internet startup Nerve.com; and was a development executive for Spike Lee's 40 Acres and A Mule Filmworks.
I’ve taught poetry at Washington University in St. Louis, the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD), and the New School University in Manhattan. My writing has appeared in the Kenyon Review, the Harvard Review, McSweeney's, Denver Quarterly, BOMB Magazine, and multiple anthologies, and my first book, “The Cop Who Rides Alone,” was published in 2002.
CORPORATE & PHILANTHROPIC LEADERSHIP
I am proud to serve on the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital’s Digital & Innovation Council, including my years as its Chairman. I serve on the Executive Committee of the National Board of Directors for the American Advertising Federation and as Co-Chair (2022 & 2023) of its Advertising Hall of Achievement. Since 2016, I have served on the Council of Judges for the prestigious Advertising Hall of Fame. I serve opn the Board of the Yale University Center for Customer Insights, am a Co-Founder of the Gun Safety Alliance and The Goodfronts, and am former member of the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences and the Board of Directors for the Ad Council. In 2018, I created and led the Guggenheim Museum’s Global Technology and Innovation Council until 2020.
Recent honors and recognitions include Fast Company's “100 Most Creative People In Business,” an Advertising Age “Media Maven” distinction, Fortune Magazine’s "40 Under 40" top business leaders and AdWeek’s “50 Most Indispensable Executives in Advertising.” In 2014, I was inducted into the Advertising Hall of Achievement.
HONORS & AWARDS
Global Media Award, NATAS
OneShow Entertainment Awards
Digital Leadership Award
Promax Promotion & Marketing Award
Juror, Cannes Lions Awards