Industry Leader Forum 2010 - Speakers

Industry Leader Forum - Speakers

headshot Jane Altobelli – Executive Vice President, Chief People Officer, Human Resources, SymphonyIRI Group

Jane Altobelli is the executive vice president and chief people officer of human resources for SymphonyIRI Group. Continuing the company’s efforts in building a high-performance culture, Altobelli is responsible for global human resources efforts, talent and performance management, organizational change efforts, staffing, benefits and compensation.

Prior to joining SymphonyIRI Group, Altobelli was senior vice president at Culligan International, a consumer products company that provides water treatment services and solutions. Prior to Culligan, she held a number of human resources executive positions with the premier provider of print and related services, RR Donnelley, where she led organizational development, talent and performance management in her various roles.

In addition to her human resources background, Altobelli has led transformational change efforts, aligning a company’s strategy, structure and culture. She has also implemented human resources strategies across Europe, Asia and South America. Her global and transformational change work has been featured in such publications as Newsweek, Chicago Tribune and Crain’s Chicago Business.

Altobelli earned a master’s degree in industrial relations and a bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Minnesota.

headshot Gaurav Bhatnagar – Managing Partner, Co-Creation Partners

Gaurav Bhatnagar is an independent consultant focused on performance transformations, culture and change management. Prior to his current role Gaurav worked with McKinsey and Company for 11 years and was a leader in the Organization practice. Gaurav has led a number of large scale performance/culture transformation and change management projects across multiple sectors (Financial Services, Healthcare, Basic Materials). Gaurav has deep expertise in both designing such programs and facilitating experiential workshops that drive transformational shifts for Top Teams and frontline employees. Prior to McKinsey, Gaurav worked for 7 years with Procter and Gamble and then Pepsi Cola International within their marketing organizations in India, the Middle East and Europe.

headshot Bill Brown – Director of Sales, NetBase Solutions, Inc.

Bill Brown has over 20 years of executive sales and sales management experience with software and technology companies. Before joining NetBase, Bill was National Sales Director at i365, where he created significant customer partnerships with Citigroup, FINRA and the U.S. Department of Justice. Prior to that Bill held executive and senior sales positions at FaceTime Communications, Cognet, Oracle and IBM. Originally from Los Angeles, he now resides in New York City.

headshot Margaret Coughlin – Chief Marketing Officer, Digital Globe

Margaret Coughlin has held leadership positions in national and international organizations focusing on marketing strategy, customer development and management. She has a particular emphasis on double bottom line products and companies that “do good and do well”. She has served as CMO at global public companies and non-profits, including Digital Globe (the leading provider of global imagery solutions), Global Giving (an on-line community that links small donors to the causes and countries they care about). She grew up in advertising agencies like BBDO and Hill Holiday. P&G was the launching pad for her career, as it has been for so many of us.

headshot Frank Cotignola –Consumer Insights Manager, CIS Center of Excellence, Knowledge Management, Kraft Foods

As part of Kraft Foods’s CIS (Consumer Insight and Strategy Group), Frank leads the group’s Knowledge Management and social media listening/consulting efforts. Frank helped develop the Community Intelligence Portal, which is the largest site of its type at Kraft Foods. He also authors “Randomness,” which is the top blog at the company. His efforts to develop both free and paid (with NetBase, Radian6, and MotiveQuest) listening platforms and insights have led to the integration and usage of such research into traditional “asking” research and shopper insights. Frank has 19+ years of analytic research experience across a number of well-known suppliers and manufacturers.

headshot Jim Figura – Vice President, Global Consumer Insights, Colgate-Palmolive Company

Jim Figura is Vice President, Global Consumer Insights for the Colgate-Palmolive Company. He joined Colgate in 1984 as Director of Corporate Market Research and was promoted to Vice President in 1989. His early responsibilities were to develop a global insight capability for Colgate, set up global category insight leaders, and develop a set of leading edge practices for research methods.

In 1991, Jim joined Colgate US to reestablish its insight program and make it a respected leader in the function both within and outside Colgate. Consumer Insight and Research today encompass brand research, new product development, category innovation, trends and futures, shopper insights, trade research, on-line applications, and information management.

Jim assumed his current position in 2006.  He has oversight over the entire research community at Colgate and is intensely involved in futures, innovation, insight generation, next practices and knowledge management.

Prior to Colgate, he held positions in market research at Richardson Vicks and General Foods. Figura holds a B.S. in business administration and a master’s degree in industrial management from The Graduate School of Industrial Administration (now Tepper) at Carnegie Mellon University. He is a member of the Executive Committees of MSI Board of Trustees and the Advertising Research Foundation, the North American Advisory Board of the Ehrenberg-Bass Institute for Marketing Science, and the Nielsen Global Advisory Board.

headshot John Ghingo – Senior Director, Oreo Global Growth Platform, Kraft Foods

John Ghingo is the senior director of Oreo Global Growth Platform at Kraft Foods. He is responsible for developing the Oreo Global Strategy in all regions and identifying and rolling out Oreo best practices and learning across the world. John is also responsible for building the Global Innovation Roadmap for Oreo, including new products, new packaging and digital marketing. He has been with Kraft for 10 years in various positions. John holds an M.B.A. from New York University, Stern School of Business and a B.B.A. from the University of Notre Dame.

headshot Donna Goldfarb, Vice President, Consumer & Market Insights, Unilever Americas

Donna Goldfarb joined Unilever‘s Consumer & Market Insight department in 1993. Unilever is among the Top 70 of the Fortune 500 Companies and one of the world’s leading suppliers of fast moving consumer goods in foods, household and personal care products.  In the United States, the portfolio includes major brand icons such as: Axe, Ben & Jerry's, Bertolli, Breyers, Caress, Country Crock, Degree, Dove personal care products, Hellmann's, Klondike, Knorr, Lipton, Popsicle, Promise, Q-Tips, Skippy, Slim-Fast, Suave, Sunsilk and Vaseline.

Prior to joining Unilever, Donna had over 10 years of research experience working for several Market Research agencies where she obtained a broad range of strategic research experience supporting clients such as Avon, Miller Brewing, Nabisco, Schering-Plough, and American Express.

Donna is currently the Vice President of Consumer & Market Insights for Unilever, Americas. Her staff of over 100 is focused on delivering leading edge capabilities in the areas of analytics/modeling with a strong emphasis on providing strategic business consulting, shopper insight and media insight for north and south America.  Donna is noted for her passion for research innovation and her relentless drive to positively impact overall business results. Donna and her team have consistently delivered ground breaking research aimed at understanding shopper missions and trips. Most recently, research aimed at understanding how consumers shopping patterns are changing due to the economic turndown has been credited for being the key enabler for business success. Donna is also leading Unilever’s global media insight and mix development research capabilities.

Donna has served on several industry committees including the Association of National Advertisers (ANA), the Marketing Science Institute and is currently serving on the board of the Advertising Research Foundation (ARF), and the ARF Research Transformation Council.

Donna has a Master of Science in Social Research with a concentration in market research and multivariate statistics. She was also a Weinstraub Scholar.

 headshot Ann Green – Partner, Client Solutions, Millward Brown

Ann Green is one of three senior Partners in Client Solutions at Millward Brown. As Partner, Ann supports client service and business development teams, providing a collective “Voice of the Client” and “Voice of the Consumer” for the organization. Ann’s specialization within the team is growing Millward Brown’s brand and communications solutions, maximizing the impact of research on our clients’ businesses by adapting listening-based solutions, and collaboration across the Kantar family.

Ann has been instrumental in expanding Millward Brown’s solutions suite to include research tools for developing brand strategy, enhancing the creative development process, and the Connects suite of solutions, which bridges multiple data sources to traditional survey-based research. She brings a unique research perspective in that she has had the opportunity to work extensively with both traditional and emerging media throughout her career.

During her career she has worked with marketers such as Procter and Gamble, Kraft, Unilever, Sprint, General Motors, Levi Strauss & Co., Bristol-Myers Squibb, Dunkin’ Donuts and Hershey, among others.

Ann is a frequent speaker at marketing industry events, including the Word of Mouth Marketing Association (WOMMA), the Online Media, Marketing and Advertising Conference (OMMA), ad:tech, and the Advertising Research Foundation (ARF), where she is an Interactive Council member. Ann's work has been published in Forbes, Critical Mass and AdMap, and she is quoted regularly in leading industry publications including AdWeek, Advertising Age, Crain's Chicago Business and E-Commerce Time.

 headshot Susan Casserly Griffin – Executive Vice President of Marketing and Business Development, BrainJuicer Inc.

Susan Casserly Griffin is the executive vice president of Marketing and Business Development at BrainJuicer Inc. Most recently at vendors like GMI, and Aberdeen Group, at Thomas Publishing and at entrepreneurial start ups like SoftWatch, and Voyager on the client side, Susan established herself as a highly successful marketeer and business development professional. Susan started her career at the American Stock Exchange where she rose to the rank of vice president. She also serves as the East Coast United States Representative for ESOMAR.

 headshot Dave Howlett, Senior Director, Consumer Insights, J.D. Power Web Intelligence

Dave was a co-founder and Vice President of Consumer Insights and Strategy of Umbria Inc., a leader in social media insights and intelligence, acquired by J.D. Power and Associates in 2008.  Dave’s experience spans more than 20 years of marketing, product development and market research including 10 years with the Sprint Corporation followed by founding or building five successful start-up telecom and high technology companies.  Dave’s market research experience includes directing the market research and strategic marketing functions for a multi-billion dollar division of Sprint.  Dave is also actively involved in economic development activities in Africa and serves as Chairman of the Board of Friends of Orphans and Vulnerable Children – Ethiopia.

 headshot Rob Key – Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Converseon

Rob is Founder and CEO of Converseon, the award winning full service social media consultancy that provides the listening/engagement/workflow technologies, operational consulting and paid/earned/mobile activation services required to help brands meet their business objectives in a social environment.   Founded in 2001, Converseon is arguably one of the industry’s first pure play social consultancies and has gained an enviable reputation for innovation and programming excellence.  Recent awards include the SAMMY for Best Social Media Agency and the Forrester Groundswell Award for in the Business to Consumer Talking category. 

Rob speaks at a wide range of industry events including Ad:Tech, iMedia, the Conference Board, Search Engine Strategies, 4As, the Advertising Research Foundation and PRSA International. Converseon’s work has been cited in such publications at the Financial Times, Business Week, Fortune, among many others.

Prior to joining Converseon, Rob was a member of the board and head of the Innovations Group at a division of Young & Rubicam.   He has been in digital marketing since 1995 and social media for nearly a decade. He is also a former Fellow at the Society for New Communications Research.

Headquartered in New York, Converseon’s team spans Detroit, San Francisco, the UK, Switzerland, Australia, India and, through partnership, Shanghai, China.

 headshot Amy A. Laine, Ph.D., Principal Client Research Analyst, IBM

Amy A. Laine, Ph.D., is a principal client research analyst at IBM. Amy conducts customized projects related to topics as diverse as Delivering a Superior Client Experience, international segmentation, e-commerce, sales force integration, solutions selling, value proposition messaging and collateral evaluation. She has been part of the IBM Market Insights team for over 10 years. Prior to IBM, Amy conducted research for Fortune 10 companies. Most recently, the Social Media program that Amy leads within IBM Market Insights was awarded the 2010 SAMMY Award for Best Social Listening Strategy at the Enterprise level. Amy holds a Ph.D. in industrial/organizational psychology from New York University.

headshot Ian Lewis – Director of the Research Impact Consulting Practice, Cambiar LLC

Ian is Director of the Research Impact Consulting Practice at Cambiar LLC, a management consultancy dedicated to the market research profession.  The practice helps research departments become strategic partners and increase their business impact. Before joining Cambiar he was VP Consumer Research & Insights for Time Inc., where he transformed the research department from a data source to a valued business partner.

He has four grandchildren, plus hiking boots and a motorcycle for escape

headshot Anne Manning – Founding Partner, Drumcircle

Anne Manning is a founding partner at Drumcircle, a branding and innovation strategy firm. Our expertise is uncovering the Emotivations™ that drive behavior. We then turn those unique insights into marketing/communication and innovation strategies and concepts. Anne is an accomplished group facilitator and shares research findings via colorful, visual stories.  She too grew up in advertising agencies like Hill Holiday and Y&R. She recently earned an MSc in Creativity and Change Leadership. She uses every opportunity she can to spread the word about how  to think and problem solve in more effective and creative ways.

headshot Dr. Carl Marci – Co-founder, CEO and Chief Science Officer, Innerscope Research

Dr. Carl Marci is co-founder, CEO and Chief Science Officer of Innerscope Research. He is also Director of Social Neuroscience at the Massachusetts General Hospital, Assistant Professor in Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, and former Visiting Lecturer at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Program in Media Arts & Sciences. Dr. Marci received his B.A. with honors at Columbia University, his M.A. in psychology and philosophy at Oxford University as a Rhodes Scholar and then completed his M.D. with honors at Harvard Medical School. He has extensive training in psychophysiology and neuroscience through two National Institutes of Health research fellowships and has published numerous articles in peer-reviewed science journals, gives lectures nationally and internationally and is a leader in the new fields of social neuroscience and neuromarketing.

headshot Charles Mohs – Chief Marketing Officer, Global Franchise, Pfizer Consumer Healthcare

Charles Mohs, Chief Marketing Officer, Global Franchise is responsible for developing global marketing strategies that leverage core brands and accelerate organic growth.  He is a member of the PCH Global Leadership Team.

Charles has led the International Marketing Department within Wyeth Consumer Healthcare since December 2005.  In this role, he has been responsible for leading the marketing and strategic brand planning activities, which have helped drive over $300 MM in growth through focus on Global Brands like Centrum, Advil and Caltrate.  He established new best practices for identifying meaningful consumer insights across markets and has instituted a new television advertising pre-testing and development process that has significantly increased advertising effectiveness.

Charles joined Wyeth Consumer Healthcare in March 2003 as Director of Analgesics within International Marketing, where he was responsible for developing the International Analgesic Strategy, which defined a new investment focus in terms of markets and products, while institutionalizing the strong claims driven advertising model now used for market entry and sustained growth.  In January 2005, he was promoted to Senior Director of Analgesics.  The International Analgesic Strategy has contributed more than $125 MM in growth since 2004.

Prior to joining Wyeth, Charles worked at Novartis Consumer Health, serving as Director of International Marketing – Latin America for the Gerber brand and later as Vice President – International Baby Food. He joined Novartis Consumer Health in 1995 and has worked in international roles since that time, involving more than 50 countries.  Prior to Novartis, Charles worked in the U.S. for A.C. Nielsen as a marketing consultant.

Charles has an MBA in Marketing and International Business from the University of Wisconsin - Madison.  In addition, he has a Master’s Degree and a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science and International Relations from the University of Wisconsin – Madison.

headshot Suzanne Nagel – Senior Director of Marketing,

Suzanne Nagel is senior director of Marketing at, where she oversees the brand strategy, advertising development and consumer insights functions. Suzanne has been building consumer-oriented Internet brands since 1998 - first at, where she led the offline advertising program for three years, then at the internet service provider Earthlink, and finally at Prior to working in the Internet space, Suzanne spent several years in brand management and strategy consulting roles. She has an M.B.A. from the Stanford Graduate School of Business.

headshot Lisa Riley – Senior Manager, Consumer Insights and Strategy, J.D. Power and Associates Web Intelligence Division

Lisa Riley is a Senior Manager in the Consumer Insights and Strategy Department of J.D. Power and Associates Web Intelligence Division. At Web Intelligence, Lisa’s key focus is leading custom research engagements, listening in on millions of unfiltered consumer conversations to drive new product innovation, branding, and consumer segmentation for her clients. During her tenure, she’s played a key role in identifying custom solutions to meet client pain points, shaping analysis, and crafting action plans that drive real business change. While she serves all verticals, Lisa specializes in CPG, Retail and Media & Entertainment.

Prior to her position with J.D. Power and Associates, she worked in advertising and media where she specialized in account planning, creative strategy and development and strategic media/connections planning for CPG, Fashion & Apparel, and Healthcare clients.

Joel Rubinson – President, Rubinson Partners, Inc.

Joel Rubinson is President of Rubinson Partners, Inc., providing marketing and research consulting for a brave new world.

As Chief Research Officer at The ARF, Joel interacted directly with hundreds of research leaders and drove the organization’s initiatives regarding notably: research transformation, 360 media and marketing. Social media and listening, online research data quality, shopper insights.

Joel helped build awareness of the ARF and its priorities by building a sizable social media presence via a blog that achieved thousands of page views each month and with a twitter profile of nearly 3,000 followers.

Prior to joining the ARF, Joel was Senior Vice-President, Head of Advanced Solutions for Synovate North America where he was their leading branding resource and was also the global thought leader for shopper research. Before joining Synovate, Joel was at the NPD Group for many years, leading the creation of tools for brand equity management (BrandBuilder), new product forecasting (ESP), category management and designed many of their data collection and sampling methodologies as NPD changed from paper diaries to online research. Joel started his research career at Unilever.

Joel is also a published author of numerous papers in professional journals and frequent speaker at industry conferences. He has taught the official American Marketing Association advanced tutorial on brand loyalty, been a professor at NYU and lectured at Columbia, Wharton, Amos Tuck School, and the University of Rochester. Joel holds an MBA in statistics and economics from the University of Chicago and a BS from NYU.

headshot Tamara Sachs – CEO, Founder, Sachs Insights

Since her college days, Tammy has been fascinated by the theater of everyday life. She founded Sachs Insights over 20 years ago; analyzing focus groups, ethnography and user experience research and creating documentaries that illuminate the insights and reality of everyday people for the marketers who seek to connect with them.

Fast forward to present: Sachs Insights has grown into a community of eclectic researchers who are passionate about uncovering the thoughts, feelings, and experiences of all kinds of people. We view qualitative research as an art.

Having worked with pioneers in interactive design, Tammy was inspired to build the first independent Customer Experience Lab at Sachs Insights – where participants assess the appeal and usability of websites, mobile applications, kiosks and games. She co-authored a book capturing her philosophy toward user experience (Back to the User, 2002, New Rider Press) with Gary McClain, Ph.D.

Prior to founding Sachs Insights, Tammy was a product developer at Citibank and a planner at Ogilvy & Mather. She graduated from Wesleyan University, magna cum laude, with a BA in Theater and Psychology and from NYU with an MBA in Marketing. 

headshot Scot Safon – Executive Vice President/General Manager, Headline News

Scot Safon joined CNN Worldwide in August 2002 as its Senior Vice President of Marketing and Promotion and was appointed Executive Vice President, Chief Marketing Officer in 2007. 

Prior to joining CNN, Safon was senior vice president of marketing for Turner Network Television (TNT).  He has also overseen campaigns for TNT’s specials, sports programming and original series, including the network’s coverage of PGA, NASCAR and the NBA.

Before joining TNT, Safon was in the ad agency world, handling campaigns for the CBS Television Network, working on campaigns for CBS Sports, CBS News and CBS International.  He began his career in account management with D’Arcy Masius Benton & Bowles, Inc. 

Safon earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in economics and history from the University of Virginia and a Masters of Business Administration from Cornell University.

headshot Mark Truss – Director of Brand Intelligence, JWT

Mark Truss is a seasoned researcher, spanning both the market research vendor and agency sides of the industry. On the research vendor side, mark spent many years researching consumer packaged goods, financial services, publishing and consumer technology brands and categories as a Senior Vice President at The NPD Group and Ipsos.

Mark is respected for his acumen in various brand equity research techniques and ability to utilize those techniques to improve, restore, and re-invent brands. He has developed an industry reputation for his creative research design, methodology and analytical skills across a wide range of research techniques and product/service categories. He has been frequently called upon to speak about his research learning and approaches at client and industry forums.

At JWT, one of the world’s foremost advertising agencies, Mark is responsible for managing the global research function, utilizing quantitative techniques to inform, refute and expand hypothesis around consumer insight, behavior and beliefs.

Mark is also a Professor at Columbia University where he teaches Market Research as part of a graduate program in Strategic Communications.

In additional, Mark is an active member of the Ad Council Market Research Committee and a member of the Market Research Council.

headshot Stan Turek – VP Customer Strategy & Shopper Insights, PepsiCo

Stan has over two decades of experience in the consumer packaged goods industry, building collaborative relationships with strategic retailers across the US. His has held several sales and insights leadership roles at over the past 13 years at PepsiCo, with 8 years for the corporate PepsiCo division, and 5 at the Frito-Lay division. He began his career in management at the Nabisco Biscuit Company in 1989 in New York City.

He has a Bachelors of Science in Management from the City University of New York and a Masters of Business Administration from the University of Dallas. He is currently based at the PepsiCo facility in Plano, Texas.

In his current role, Stan leads an executive team that focuses on company-wide and external delivery of customer- specific custom (primary) research & analytics for nine of PepsiCo’s most strategic customers across 4 channels, whose role is to identify joint PepsiCo category & retailer transformational growth opportunities encompassing total store and food/beverage that includes shopper-centric marketing and innovation strategies, consumer attitude and behavioral purchasing, packaging and promotions and reinvention of the shopping experience .

Internally, the team focuses on increasing the visibility and identifying the strategic role of the customers (retailers) with internal constituents that lead to shopper-out sales growth opportunities through either custom innovation or shopper marketing that has tangible business growth results.

headshot Drew Westen – Professor of Psychology, Emory University and Author of The Political Brain

Drew Westen, Ph.D. is a clinical, personality, and political psychologist and neuroscientist, and Professor in the Departments of Psychology and Psychiatry at Emory University. He is the founder and principal of Westen Strategies, a strategic messaging firm, and co-founder of Implicit Strategies, a market research firm that assesses unconscious responses to messages and advertisements. He formerly taught at the University of Michigan and Harvard Medical School and is the author of three books and over 150 scientific articles. His book, The Political Brain: The Role of Emotion in Deciding the Fate of the Nation, has had a substantial impact on messaging strategies in politics and business and around the world, and provides the scientific basis of the unique messaging approach of Westen Strategies. He has applied this approach in research with over 30,000 voters over the last four years on most of the major issues of the times, from national security, economics, job creation, abortion, immigration, affirmative action, gun safety, the role of government, disparities in health, to the needs and interests of children.

He frequently comments on political and psychological issues on radio, television, and in print, in venues such as CNN, MSNBC, CBS, NPR, PBS, the Washington Post, Adweek, and The New Republic, and is a frequent contributor to the Huffington Post. He has advised a range of candidates and organizations, from presidential and congressional campaigns to major nonprofit organizations, such as Families USA, the AFL-CIO, the AARP, Media Matters, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, America’s Voice, the NRDC, Project New West, the Democratic Senate Campaign Committee, and the Democratic Senate Caucus. He co-leads the Progressive Talent Initiative, a media training program for progressive commentators on television radio, with Media Matters, which is training dozens of progressives to maximize the effectiveness of their communication on all of the major television channels and cable networks.

Greg Whiteman – United States Postal Service

Greg Whiteman holds a B.A. from Dartmouth College, a M.A. in International Studies from The Johns Hopkins University, and an M.B.A. in Marketing from The George Washington University.

Greg has  held various marketing management positions in product management, sales, and marketing servcies.  Currently, Greg is the Manager, Market Research, responsible for market research, market and competitive analysis and strategic assessemnts.

headshot Susan D. Whiting – Vice Chair and Executive Vice President, The Nielsen Company

As Vice Chair and Executive Vice President of The Nielsen Company, Susan Whiting spearheads Nielsen’s efforts to provide clients worldwide with critical information and insights about the ever-changing global economy.

Susan has been a keynote speaker at such prominent business venues as the Detroit Economic Club, the Executive Club of Chicago, the Commonwealth Club of California and both the Caijing Annual Conference and the Boao Forum for Asia, two of China’s most important economic and financial gatherings. She has appeared on CNBC and Fox Business Network, and has been profiled in Business Week, The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal.

In 2009, she received the “Women Who Make a Difference” award from the International Women’s Forum. The Wall Street Journal recognized Susan as one of the “50 Women to Watch” in 2007, the same year she was named by Crain’s New York Business among the “100 Most Influential Women” in the city.

Susan serves as a member of The Nielsen Company’s Executive Council, and sits on the Board of Directors for Wilmington Trust Corporation, MarkMonitor, the Ad Council, the Corporate Board of the Kennedy Center and the YMCA of Greater New York.

Susan Whiting graduated from Denison University with a BA, cum laude, in Economics, and currently serves as trustee of the University.


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