Michael Stich - Rockfish Interactive, CEO

Michael Stich is Chief Innovation Officer at Rockfish Interactive. Michael’s specializations include e-commerce, analytics / measurement, mobile, digital retail, social media, relationship marketing, product development and organizational consulting. Prior to Rockfish, he served as group director of strategic planning at WPP agency Bridge Worldwide. While at Bridge, Michael and his team served market leaders in CPG, retail, healthcare, technology and financial services. Previously, he served in venture capital, marketing and strategy roles for Texas Instruments, McKinsey & Company, and Dell. Michael holds a B.S. in computer engineering from Tufts University and an M.B.A. with a marketing focus from the MIT Sloan School of Management. @mstich

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Stephen Surman - Molson Coors, Head of Global Digital & Ecommerce Strategy

Stephen has spent 15 years leading the digital marketing programs for some of the world’s largest consumer goods brands. Currently, Stephen heads digital marketing strategy for Mead Johnson & Company, the global leader in Infant & Toddler nutrition. Previously, Stephen served as Vice President of Digital Strategy for Anheuser-Busch, where he was responsible for setting direction and developing marketing plans to support the company’s U.S. portfolio, including Budweiser and Bud Light. Stephen began his career at Procter & Gamble, leading digital marketing for the company’s Baby & Toddler Care and Feminine Care divisions, with responsibility for brands like Pampers, Tampax, and others. Stephen is a graduate of Cornell University, where he received a bachelors degree in engineering. He also holds a masters degree in computer science from Northern Kentucky University and an MBA from the University of Chicago. @stephensurman
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Adam Symson - E.W. Scripps, Chief Digital Officer

Adam Symson is The E.W. Scripps Company’s chief digital officer, responsible for developing the products and services for digital-platform consumers and advertisers in more than 26 Scripps newspaper and television markets (as well as for consumers of a myriad of other digital services that are not market specific). He previously was responsible for the operation, content and revenue for the TV division’s interactive businesses, including community news and information websites, micro-sites and mobile businesses in nine local TV markets across the country. Before that assignment, he spent a year as the director of content and marketing for the Scripps interactive media division (which was spun off into Scripps Networks Interactive in 2008). Symson joined Scripps corporate in 2002 as the director of investigations and special projects for the television stations group. Shortly thereafter, he was named director of news strategy and operations, with responsibilities for the station’s 9 NBC and ABC affiliated stations. Symson first joined The E.W. Scripps Company as the executive producer of investigations and special projects for KNXV TV, the Scripps-owned television station in Phoenix, Arizona. Prior to his work in Phoenix, Symson worked as an investigative journalist for CBS stations, WBBM TV in Chicago, and KCBS TV in Los Angeles, and served tours of duty in newsrooms across Los Angeles, including KNBC TV, KCAL TV and KGIL AM 1260. Mr. Symson has a bachelor’s degree in communications from the University of California, Los Angeles. He lives with his wife Sherri, and daughters Logan and Hannah, in Cincinnati, Ohio.

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Hunter Thurman - Thriveplan, President

Hunter is the Founder and President of Thriveplan: showing brands how to innovate and grow where strategy meets Behavioral Science. Throughout his career, he has helped global brands reframe to create inspired new products and meaning for their consumers everywhere – one of Hunter’s creations is guaranteed to be in your home right now. Beyond his clients at Thriveplan, Hunter works with a variety of venture-backed and bootstrap startups.  

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Suzanne Tosolini - Jim Stengel LLC, Brand Strategy Consultant

Suzanne Tosolini has 22+ years experience as a Brand Strategist – 18 years at P&G and 4 years as a consultant. For 18 years she led big global brands for P&G in Western Europe, Central and Eastern Europe, and North America. Now she works as a Brand Strategy Consultant with clients across the apparel, food, publishing, finance, automotive, sports, beauty, fashion and CPG industries.Suzanne made her mark at P&G as a thought leader in all things related to Brand Strategy and Communication. As Director of Integrated Communications and Corporate Marketing she developed and deployed many of P&G’s best practices including those for Digital Marketing. As a consultant Suzanne enjoys working with Brands and Companies to identify their unique and purposeful positioning in the marketplace. She primarily does this work with large Fortune 500 companies but has also played a significant role as advisor and active member of some start-ups.Suzanne holds a Masters degree in Business and Social Studies from The University of Dublin, Trinity College in Ireland.

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Taylor Valentine - Horizon Media, Chief Invention Officer

As the industry’s first Chief Invention Officer, Taylor drives invention into every corner of Horizon Media, nurturing a forward thinking mindset and igniting revolutionary value creation throughout the agency. Taylor makes it possible for invention to live on past the ideation phase, empowering great ideas to become realities – for both our clients and employees.

Taylor leads the award-winning INVENT@Horizon team, a group whose purpose is to pioneer new products, launch new offerings, formulate better ways to solve problems, inspire and recruit top talent, and scour the marketplace for emerging opportunities. Taylor ensures that all invention initiatives deliver quantifiable value for Horizon Media, its employees, and its clients in the forms of revenue, operational efficiency and/or marketplace differentiation.

Prior to his role as Chief Invention Officer, Valentine was SVP of Social Media Strategy, having conceived, built and led Horizon Media’s social media practice since 2008. Prior to digital marketing, Taylor worked in the management consulting industry. There, he partnered with client teams to increase process efficiencies and improve workforce effectiveness all while ensuring the quality of their final product. Clients included Bayer, Solutia, Akzo Nobel, Hercules, Novell, United Water and Cap Gemini Ernst & Young.

Boston born and bred, but now living in Park Slope, Brooklyn, Taylor has developed a passion for Prospect Park and half-marathons – where he cheers for his wife and discovers new playgrounds with his gregarious and energetic young daughter.

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Deb Vicchiarelli - Spark Starter Studios, Founder & President

Deb Vicchiarelli is a proven innovator, marketer and business driver. She is the Founder and currently serves as President of Spark Starter Studios, an innovation and marketing firm. She is also on the Board of Directors at PowerNet, Inc. Over a 30 year career Deb led marketing and sales teams at Procter and Gamble, Heinz, Sara Lee, Cincinnati Bell and Corporex. During this time she learned how to drive brands and manage through disruptive change. Deb renovated Hawaiian Punch’s Punchy, innovated the tuna pouch for Starkist, licensed with Emeril Lagasse to launch a premium sausage under his name, and launched Zoomtown, Any Distance, and Complete Connections for Cincinnati Bell.

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Rick Webb - timehop, COO

Rick Webb currently serves as a consultant to Tumblr on Marketing and Revenue, a mentor to Tech Stars NY and The Brandery, and as a venture partner at Quotidian Ventures. Finally, Rick is the founder and CEO of Secret Clubhouse, a tech coworking space in Williamsburg, NY.

In 2001, Webb co-founded The Barbarian Group, an award-winning digital ad agency. He served as its COO for the first ten years of the company’s existence. Webb left in 2011 to pursue angel investing in, and writing on, technology and advertising. He is an angel investor in Foursquare, Branch, Circa, Percolate, Docracy and others, along with two TechStars graduates, Nestio and Timehop. He is an advisor to several other tech startups and marketing services companies, including Sherpaa, Hard Candy Shell, and Small Girls Big Business PR.

Webb is the former writer of a tech column for the NY Observer and Betabeat and an avid blogger on technology, advertising, economics, politics and the government. He graduated from Boston University with a degree in International Economics in 1992. He serves a board member of the VCU Brandcenter, one of the most renowned advertising graduate schools, and was named as Creativity Magazine’s 50 most creative people in marketing (2008). He was born and raised in Fairbanks, Alaska.

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Adam Weber - Dollar Shave Club, Chief Marketing Officer

Adam is the Vice President of Consumer Marketing at Dollar Shave Club, the membership based e-commerce start up that delivers high quality shaving products for a few bucks a month. In this role, he is leading all marketing efforts behind the company’s rapid subscription growth – including direct, subscriber, and content marketing. Prior to Dollar Shave Club, Adam was the Marketing Director for Gilt Groupe’s Women’s division building marketing strategies and plans across paid media, search, CRM, social media, and partner marketing with some of Gilt’s top luxury fashion & beauty brands. For 6+ years prior, he was in Brand Management within P&G’s Beauty & Grooming division, where he enabled break though innovation in digital, entertainment marketing, & e-commerce. His most recent Brand Manager role was leading the P&G’s acquisition & rapid expansion of the prestige grooming brand & retailer, The Art of Shaving.

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Doug Worple - Barefoot Proximity, Chairman

Doug is the founder and Chairman of Barefoot Proximity. When Barefoot was acquired by BBDO/Proximity in July of 2008, Doug joined the Executive Board of Proximity Worldwide. Doug has most recently served the BBDO/Proximity network as the Worldwide Director of Commercial Digital Innovation, a role charged with bringing new ideas and technologies around the globe to the network. Doug is an investor in and Chairs the board of two technology start-ups including Now Computing (Barcelona, Spain ) and Smart Picture Technology (Austin, TX). He also is a board member of OCT8NE (Menlo Park, CA).and has served as a board member for Snoox (Tel Aviv, Israel) and Barcelona Housing Systems (Barcelona, Spain) in the past.

Beyond Barefoot Proximity, Doug has also led the creation of several other businesses and initiatives inside and outside of the agency world. In 2007, he teamed up with his brother Bill to launch 3LUXE, which was an early recommendation platform. In 2009, Doug conceived and created Man of the House with the team at BarefootProximity, an idea which was subsequently picked up by Procter & Gamble.

Doug has an undergraduate degree from Iowa State University, and an MBA from Xavier University. Prior to founding BarefootProximity in 1993, Doug spent spent nearly 8 years at P&G — first in Finance and then Brand Management.

Doug is based in Barcelona, and has enjoyed the opportunity to see quite a bit of the world in his global role. He’s married with 2 children, and 3 dogs who take turns joining him at the office. Beyond the world of start-ups, Doug enjoys escaping with his family to their cottage on the Georgian Bay.

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