Susan Gianinno was named Chairman of Publicis North America in 2013 and in April 2018, was appointed Senior Advisor to Publicis Groupe. Among her other Publicis responsibilities, Susan leads Publicis Groupe’s Partnership with the World Economic Forum as a member of the WEF Steering Committee on Shaping the Future of Education, Work and Gender Equality and as a member of the Global Futures Council on Education and Work. Susan has also served as Chairman of Publicis Academy. As Chairman and CEO of Publicis USA from 2003-2018, Susan led Publicis’ consistent growth and expansion in this important region, making it one of the most a highly respected, top tier creative and digital agencies in North America.
In addition to her responsibilities at Publicis, Susan is a recent Fellow and Senior Fellow at Harvard University’s Advanced Leadership Initiative, and is current Co-Chair of the Advanced Leadership Coalition, a corps of former Advanced Leadership Fellows who actively pursue world-changing social impact projects.
Prior to joining Publicis Groupe, Susan was Chairman and President of D’Arcy Masius Benton and Bowles Worldwide, which she joined after being CEO of J .Walter Thompson in New York. Susan joined JWT from BBDO, where she was an EVP in charge of Global Clients. She spent 12 years at Young & Rubicam, where she was EVP, Global Client Managing Director.
Susan has served on several boards, both corporate and nonprofit. She is on the Board of RR Donnelley and Chairs their Corporate Governance Committee. She is a former board member of A.T. Cross. She is currently Chair Emeritus of the Ad Council, where she has been a board member since 2003. Susan has also served on the Board of The Paley Center for Media.
For over 10 years, Susan served on the board of the 4As. Other nonprofit boards include Encore.Org and WorldTeach, and, for 10 years, United Way of New York including serving on the Executive Committee.
Susan’s higher education directorships include being on the Director’s Advisory Council for Harvard University’s Advanced Leadership Initiative, and serving as Board Trustee and Trustee Associate at Boston College. Also at Boston College, Susan co-founded BC Connections, a pioneering Mentoring program for women undergraduates and co-founded the Council on Women. Susan is also on the Advisory Council for the Social Sciences at the University of Chicago.
Susan started in advertising while working on a doctorate in comparative psychology from the University of Chicago. She received a master’s in comparative human development from the University of Chicago, a master’s in educational psychology from Northwestern University and a bachelor’s degree with honors from Boston College.
The recipient of numerous industry honors, Susan was named a member of the YWCA Academy of Women Achievers and selected by Advertising Age as a “Woman to Watch” and one of the “100 most Influential Women in Advertising.” She was honored with the prestigious MATRIX Award for Women in Communications and received Boston College’s Excellence in Commerce award.
Susan is married to Dr. Lawrence Gianinno, a Research Psychologist, and resides in Boston. They have a daughter, Alexandra, who lives and works in D.C. with her husband and three children.
Susan joined the Board in 2020 and serves as Chair of the Marketing Committee and is a member of the Executive, Development, and Nomination & Governance Committees.
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