davidaaker200x250David Aaker, the Vice-Chairman of Prophet Brand Strategy and Professor Emeritus of Marketing Strategy at the Haas School of Business, UC Berkeley, is the winner of three career awards for contributions to the science of marketing (the Paul D. Converse Award), marketing strategy (the Vijay Mahajan Award) and the theory and practice of marketing (the Buck Weaver Award), he has published over 100 articles and 17 books including Strategic Market ManagementManaging Brand Equity,Building Strong Brands, Brand Leadership (co-authored with Erich Joachimsthaler) Brand Portfolio Strategy, From Fargo to the World of BrandsSpanning Silos, Brand Relevance, and his latest bookAaker on Branding.

His books have well over one million copies and have been translated into eighteen languages.  Named as one of the top five most important marketing/business gurus in 2007, Professor Aaker has won awards for the best article in the California Management Review and (twice) in the Journal of Marketing.  A recognized authority on brand equity and brand strategy, he is aregular columnist for AMA’s Marketing News, and publishes regularly on LinkedIn and his blog at davidaaker.com.



yvonchouinard200x250Yvon Chouinard was born in Lewiston, Maine, in 1938, and raised in Southern California. There, as a teen he taught himself how to climb, surf, skin dive—and blacksmith. By the early 1970s when he founded Patagonia, Chouinard Equipment pitons, carabiners and ice axes had become the world standard.

Spending 140 days a year in the natural world, Chouinard learned early in his life as an alpinist, surfer and fly fisherman the seriousness of the environmental crisis—and he brought this knowledge to bear on his work. In the late 1980s he instituted Patagonia’s earth tax, pledging 1 percent of sales to the preservation and restoration of the natural environment.

In the 1990s, Chouinard encouraged Patagonia to consciously to reduce the environmental footprint of its products and activities, beginning with a 100 percent switch from conventional to organic cotton and the introduction of fleece clothing made from recycled polyester. He then sought to work with other partners to companies to reduce environmental harm on a global scale. Chouinard, either independently, or with Patagonia helped co-found with others the Fair Labor Association, One Percent for the Planet, the Textile Exchange, the Conservation Alliance, and the Sustainable Apparel Coalition. In addition, Patagonia has been a B corp member since 2012.

Chouinard continues to surf and fly fish. He is the author or co-author of Climbing Ice, Let My People Go Surfing, The Responsible Company and Simple Fly Fishing.



trevoredwards200x250Trevor Edwards was born in London, England. He grew up in London and Jamaica before attending Baruch College, City University of New York, where he received a bachelor’s degree in business in 1984. Five years later, while also working fulltime, he returned to Baruch College to receive his MBA.

Edwards began his professional career at The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc., before joining Colgate-Palmolive Company to work in marketing. In 1992, Edwards joined NIKE as a regional marketing manager.

In his role of President, Edwards provides long-term business vision for one of the world’s most iconic brands and leads NIKE’s deep understanding of consumers worldwide. Edwards’ successful career at NIKE showcases his ambition to put the consumer and the athlete at the center of all the company does. A true global citizen, Edwards’ unique outlook drives NIKE’s approach to making profound, long-lasting connections with people in more than 160 countries across six continents.

Throughout his storied career at the world’s most innovative and inspirational sports brand, Edwards has led some of NIKE’s biggest breakthroughs, including a transformation of the digital landscape through the creation of Nike+ and was instrumental in NIKE becoming the world’s leading football (soccer) brand. Today, his responsibilities include leadership over the NIKE brand, which includes the company’s entire geographical business: wholesale, retail and e-commerce operations.

Edwards has been widely recognized for his influence in sports and business in publications from Sports Illustrated to Fast Company. He has served on the board of Mattel, Inc. since 2012. Edwards lives in Portland, Oregon with his wife and twin sons.



shellylazarus200x250Shelly Lazarus has been working, as she would say it, “In the business I love,” for more than four decades, almost all of that time at Ogilvy & Mather.  Shelly rose through the ranks of Ogilvy & Mather assuming positions of increasing responsibility in the management of the company, including president of O&M Direct North America, Ogilvy & Mather New York and Ogilvy & Mather North America. She was named worldwide CEO of Ogilvy & Mather in 1996 and Chairman in 1997. She became Chairman Emeritus in July 2012.

Shelly started at Ogilvy at a time when the agency’s legendary founder David Ogilvy still walked the halls, and personally preached that the purpose of advertising was to build great brands. Under Shelly’s leadership, that essential mission has remained the centerpiece of the company’s philosophy, extending across regions and marketing disciplines, and attracting some of the world’s largest and most respected brands including American Express, BP, Coca-Cola, IBM and Unilever among many others.

Shelly has been a frequent industry honoree. Advertising Women of New York selected Shelly as its Woman of the Year in 1994. She was honored by Women in Communications with their Matrix Award in 1995, was named Business Woman of the Year by the New York City Partnership in 1996, and Woman of the Year in 2002 by the Direct Marketing Association (DMA). She has appeared numerous times in Fortune magazine’s annual ranking of America’s 50 Most Powerful Women in Business. Shelly was the first woman to receive Columbia Business School’s Distinguished Leader in Business Award as well as the Advertising Educational Foundation’s (AEF) Lifetime Achievement Award. She was inducted into the American Advertising Federation Hall of Fame in 2013 and is also a member of the DMA’s Hall of Fame.

Shelly serves on the boards of several corporate, philanthropic and academic institutions: The Blackstone Group, The Defense Business Board, FINRA, General Electric, Merck, New York Presbyterian Hospital, Committee Encouraging Corporate Philanthropy, World Wildlife Fund, Partnership for New York City, Lincoln Center, and the Board of Overseers of Columbia Business School, where she received her MBA in 1970. She served for five years as Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Smith College, her alma mater. She is a member of Advertising Women of New York, The Committee of 200, Council on Foreign Relations, The Business Council, and Women’s Forum Inc. She has also served as Chairman of the American Association of Advertising Agencies.

Shelly is the wife of Dr. George Lazarus, a New York pediatrician, and mother to their three grown children.