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Maryam Banikarim  

Head of Marketing at Nextdoor; Former CMO at Hyatt Hotels Corporation; Executive in Residence at Columbia Business School

Maryam Banikarim shows organizations how to shift mindsets and build themselves through the lens of purpose. Known as a fearless force for change with a track record of creating and leading successful brands such as Hyatt, Gannett, NBCUniversal and Univision, Maryam’s game-changing presentation demonstrates how to define your purpose, differentiate your brand, make the case for change, rally the troops internally and share it with the world. As a dedicated press freedom advocate, in 2019 Reporters Without Borders (RSF) elected Banikarim as the next chair of RSF USA's board of directors after serving as an advisory board member since 2013. She is also sought after as a thought leader on transformation, purpose-based branding, multi-cultural marketing, the changing role of the CMO and women’s leadership. A builder of businesses, teams and brands who brings boundless energy and an incredible range of experience to the speaking stage, Maryam is catalyst for any organization that is looking to evolve, change and become purpose-driven.

As the global CMO at Hyatt Hotels Corporation, Maryam was responsible for helping Hyatt become the most preferred hospitality brand, driving loyalty and community among high-end travelers with a portfolio of thirteen global brand experiences. She elevated the organization by mobilizing colleagues, launching brands and businesses, reimagining loyalty, and establishing unprecedented partnerships. Prior to this role, she was Gannett’s first-ever CMO. She is credited with repositioning the company and its brands (including USA Today), uncovering and executing its core purpose, reinvigorating employee morale, and establishing a national sales organization, all of which resulted in topline growth. In a few short years, she and the management team saw the stock price go from $13 a share to over $30. Maryam was also Senior Vice President at NBCUniversal and Chief Marketing officer for Univision Communications, Inc. Her unique can-do attitude was also essential to successfully unifying and transforming both Univision and NBC Universal during periods of rapid transformation.

She has been widely recognized for her achievements from The New York Post’s “50 Most Powerful Women in NYC,” to Fast Company’s “Top 10 Disrupters,” to Advertising Age’s “Women to Watch.” Additionally, Maryam is recognized as a Woman of Distinction by the League of Women Voters of the City of New York, was honored by the Girl Scouts Council of Greater New York and is a recipient of the Ellis Island Medal of Honor. Maryam has also appeared on TV, done radio interviews and written for such publications as Fortune, Fast Company, AdAge, The Huffington Post and The Daily Beast. She is also known as a perceptive and insightful interviewer, leading conversations with business leaders such as Lisa Gersh (Goop), Bob Pittman (iHeart Media), and Emilio Estefan (multi-cultural marketing).


Hyatt's Global Marketing Head On How To Embrace Risk

Maryam Banikarim: I took the curvy road. Growing up, I thought I wanted to be an investigative reporter or a photojournalist.

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