Billee Howard is Founder + CEO of BRANDthro, a neuromarketing consultancy that harnesses creativity + technology to power a brand’s purpose and experience in ways that demonstrate a deeper understanding of brand targets and the language/content most apt to drive their engagement. Billee has a strategic vision for how brands can differentiate themselves from their competition through the lens of purpose and sharpened emotional intelligence.
Billee was formerly CSO of Centiment, an emotional intelligence technology company that provided the inspiration for BRANDthro. This is where she developed her interest in helping brands use technology to better predict how their customers will feel, in an effort to get them to act.
Beginning her career as Press Secretary for the President of the Philippines and his cabinet at the age of 22, Billee developed a global market perspective from early on, and understood that the third world would not be third much longer. Switching from politics to business with a focus on how CEO’s can drive culture, Billee joined Shandwick at age 25, and launched their National Financial Media Group.
When Weber bought Shandwick, making Weber Shandwick the largest PR firm in the world, Billee was named EVP, and co-founded their Global Strategic Media Group, handling global communications for leading brands such as Samsung, PepsiCo, MasterCard, and AllState. Billee later landed Faith Popcorn as a client, and becoming immersed in Popcorn’s innovative cultural approach to business, she pioneered a strategic alliance with Brain Reserve to leverage futurism in global PR campaigns.
Billee has a book dedicated to the study of the sharing economy called We-Commerce released in December 2015. She is an active contributor on Forbes.com and the Huffington Post on the topics of marketing, storytelling and the sharing economy. Billee is also an influencer and futurist for IBM.
Billee graduated cum laude from the Roy H. Park School of Communications and serves as a member of its national board of advisors. Billee was the winner of PR Week’s 30 under 30, and 40 under 40, as well as being selected for the Media Professional of the Year Award twice. Billee Howard lives in Manhattan with her boyfriend Ned and her iconic Shih Tzu, Bugsy.
Todd A. Myers
Todd Myers is a Partner + Chief Strategy Officer at BRANDthro. He is a revenue-producing executive and entrepreneur with a talent for shaping businesses in relevant, but not always obvious ways, that improve performance and profitability that benefit all stakeholders. Todd’s strategic expertise is grounded in customer insights, cultural trends, 20+ years on the digital front lines and a global marketing communications acumen across paid, owned and earned media.
Todd formerly served as COO of Centiment, the emotional intelligence firm that BRANDthro served as the consultancy for. In that role, he served as the strategic bridge between both brands with an eye on extracting the most innovative solutions for clients.
Todd’s passion for creating, communicating and implementing innovative business frameworks that connect with culture has been informed and refined by his unique career trajectory that has spanned from the entertainment industry at a talent agency and a movie studio where he developed screenplays to Cap Gemini Consulting (post MBA), where he collaborated on the development of a business framework for major interactive TV joint venture, and then to AOL, where he evaluated and developed business cases for customer-driven programming. He then went on to co-found i.spy, a successful marketing and strategy consulting firm which specialized in the development of Internet-based, customer-centric, ROI-based business and marketing opportunities. His journey continued on to NYC to work with Madonna and then to Faith Popcorn’s BrainReserve (FPBR) – where he and Billee Howard first met and worked together on an FPBR/ Weber-Shandwick alliance – and the die was cast for his collaboration – BRANDthro Media.
Todd is a mid-westerner born and bred with a BA in International Economics from The University of Michigan and an MBA, with majors in Strategy, Marketing and Finance from The Kellogg School at Northwestern University.
Mark Temple Raston
Mark Temple Raston is Chief Data Scientist at BRANDthro. Mark leads the development of the firm’s proprietary AI and machine learning approaches that blend with neuroscience to help brands sharpen their emotional intelligence in ways that drive improved engagement and performance.
In 2015, Mark founded business machine learning company, Decision Machine. Decision Machine’s scientific approach to machine learning eliminates model bias to produce estimate-free computations and stark decision boundaries that can be applied across many verticals. Mark’s current focus is on business insights and decision making in marketing and financial services.
Mark holds a doctorate in Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics from the University of Cambridge, UK—the same department as Stephen Hawking. He presents a clear, honest and authoritative voice on data science applied to marketing, and in its immense future promise.
Mark has over 20 years of global experience as an innovator and executive in information technology on Wall Street, including ten years with Citigroup, as a senior enterprise architect in CATE (Citigroup Architecture and Technology Engineering).
Christopher De Santis is Chief Growth Officer of BRANDthro. He will be responsible for expanding the firm’s client base and managing it’s top client relationships. In addition to being a co-founder of Blue Kite, Christopher DeSantis is also the President and Founder of RICG, a full-service marketing firm that develops and deploys highly personalized strategic communication programs. At RICG, Christopher has partnered in developing data-driven strategies for companies such as Disney, Prudential Financial, Genworth Financial, Nickelodeon Suites Resort, OppenheimerFunds, SunAmerica, and Mohegan Sun. The communication programs and workflow processes Christopher put into place have played integral roles in helping clients market themselves more effectively and efficiently, while simultaneously delivering an unprecedented return on investment. A serial entrepreneur, Christopher has served as mentor and coach to innovative digital and social media businesses in New York and New Jersey.
Bill Holstein is Director of C-Suite Intelligence at BRANDthro. In this capacity, Holstein leads strategy for identifying how to best harness the power of cognitive and emotional intelligence technologies for chief executive officers and other members of the C-Suite. Holstein has spent decades interviewing CEOs as a journalist for, U.S. News & World Report, Business Week, Strategy + Business and the New York Times, and served as editor-in-chief of Chief Executive magazine. He is also the author of seven books. Holstein recognizes that the best CEOs are hungry for any insight that affords them an advantage over their competitors. Based on his knowledge of how CEOs make decisions, he seeks to create customized strategies that give CEOs just the edge they are seeking.
Joanna Black is Head of Purpose Strategy at BRANDthro, covering clients on both the East and West Coasts. At BRANDthro, Joanna leverages her years of experience advising the world’s leading companies, such as Toshiba and NewsCorp, on issues pertaining to sustainability and CSR, to the benefit of clients.
As today’s business climate continues to demand that companies give back to the world as much as to their bottom lines, Joanna is an invaluable resource to brands looking to create purpose-driven initiatives that define competitive advantage. She is also a first-mover on helping clients embrace the shift from viewing CSR as a “box to check” to a day-to-day driver of purposeful business strategy. For example, Joanna was one of the first people in the US to be certified by the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI), to advise companies on how to report on GRI standards.
Joanna is also a pioneer of the collaborative purpose-driven economy, having founded the Union Square-based SheWorks Collective that the New York Post hailed as the “female WeWork.” Under Joanna’s direction, SheWorks Collective provides a workspace for women entrepreneurs to call home, an event space to expand their brand and a community to support their success. Joanna has created an environment where women entrepreneurs can get work done and find inspiration from other like-minded women.
A serial socialpreneur, Joanna throughout her career has launched her own companies and helped build purpose-driven businesses and non-profit organizations alike. She was an instrumental senior leader for Earth Day New York and also launched the acclaimed Walmart-sponsored Bentonville film festival, along with her private consultancy Up to More Good.
Joanna has been featured in many national media outlets including Sundance Channel, ABC News, New York Post, Reuters, Women’s Wear Daily, Bloomberg and Huffington Post.
Gordon Feinberg is Creative Director for BRANDthro. Gordon grew up in Bergen County. He has a bachelor degree from Northeastern University and holds an associates degree in graphic design.
Through twenty-five years of graphic design, Gordon has worked as a stand-up comedian, an actor, and director. Seven years ago, he started a new ad agency that specialized in complex virtual tours and had built hundreds of websites and has written and, or directed many television commercials. He directed a web-commercial that premiered on the Huffington Post and one of his films was accepted at The Market, a festival at Cannes for up-and-coming filmmakers.
Jason Bergund is Director of Brand Visualization for Brandthropologie’s Mojo Risin’ Studios, as well as a best selling author, and the Co-President of Our Kitchen Table Media, specializing in assisting agents, publishers, companies and individuals to develop personal brand stories that can be leveraged across a trans media platform including the web, television, movies, and commercial trade books.
Ali Mirza is the social media director at BRANDthro. His focus is to help our clients create engaging social brands & generate leads. In the recent past Ali has worked with several marketing agencies and mega brands like Chevy, Target and American Airlines. His passion lies in helping corporations & brands get RESULTS from social media.
Eduardo Vianna is Chief Video Editor for Brandthropologie and Mojo Rising Studios. With an engineering degree from the Catholic University in Brasil, Eduardo started his career in video editing and motion graphics.
In Brasil, Eduardo worked with many professionals in the field of video production, provided services to various producers, producing vignettes for TV shows and worked as a video editor and motion graphics artist for many years.
In late 2009 Eduardo worked in New York developing ideas for new projects, doing pre-production, scene direction, editing, finishing, publishing the videos produced by the analysis of the feedback generated by the video hosting sites.
With over two decades of on the ground experience in managing talent, communications and profitability for countless artists in fields as divergent as photography and music, Allyson Spiegelman is head of BRANDthro West. At BRANDthro, Allyson focuses on bringing the firm’s mission of marrying art with commerce to drive innovation to the entertainment and mogul space. Allyson is based in New York and Los Angeles, but has also established a virtual presence for the studio in the Bay Area.
Head of Digital Photography, Matusik is an image creator, collaborating in the creative process of producing impact-full images. He does not shy away from pushing the new medium into new unexplored territory. His unique background, coupled with a fresh creative approach, and an aggressive application of new technologies has manifested in a dialog with personalized sensibilities and bold vision appealing to a new generation of visual consumers.
Andrew was featured in Rangefinder Magazine for his innovative approach and desire to move the medium forward.
Matusik has produced 74 covers, and retouched hundreds of celebrities including “A” list staples like Jennifer Lopez, Scarlet Johansson, Tom Cruise, Brad Pitt, Ann Hathaway, Beyonce and Justin Timberlake.