• Transform magazine
  • October 19, 2017


2017 Transform conference North America

New York City,

Transform conference North America

Transform conference North America


Aubrey Bishai
director of marketing services
Vinson & Elkins LLP

Aubrey leads the global Marketing Services department at Vinson & Elkins LLP. She guides efficient operations for brand and creative marketing, digital marketing, Client Relationship Management strategies, and charitable contributions.

With a background in proposal management at EY, Aubrey assimilated the nuances of legal marketing through various business development roles at V&E. During her tenure at the firm, she has developed pitch strategy and metrics, conducted client and industry programming, project managed infrastructure implementations, and launched a new website and digital strategy.

Aubrey is passionate about brand strategy, efficient processes, emerging technology, collaborative teams, and top-notch client service.

David Burnstein
Run For America

David is the CEO and Founder of Run For America. David is also the author of Fast Future: How the Millennial Generation Is Shaping Our World which analyzes millennials—the largest generation in history—how and why they are changing business, technology, culture, and politics. David previously founded Generation18, a nonpartisan young voter engagement organization that registered over 25,000 new voters and held over 1,000 events in 35 states. The organization grew out of David’s first documentary film 18 in ’08. He is a frequent speaker and commentator on social innovation, millennials, and politics with appearances on CNN, FOX News, MSNBC, NPR, ABC Evening News, and C-SPAN, and in The New York Times, USA Today, The Huffington Post. As a writer, his work has appeared in Politico, Salon, Vanity Fair and Fast Company. David is the Founding Co-Director of the Bluhm/Helfand Social Innovation Fellowship @ Chicago Ideas Week, which helps outstanding young social entrepreneurs grow their impact. He is also a World Economic Forum Global Shaper, Disruptor Foundation Fellow, and serves on the advisory boards of Watson University, The Common Good, and CanLeads. He is a proud alumni of NYU’s Gallatin School of Individualized Study.

Sarah Edkins
director of communications
PEN America

Sarah joined the PEN America team as the organization’s first communications manager in October 2013. Her career spans community service and development, veterans’ affairs, human rights, and the arts. She currently serves as the Director of Communications, developing all outgoing messaging, managing press relationships, and driving social media growth and engagement.

Before joining PEN America, Sarah served as Communications Manager at the International Coalition of Sites of Conscience, where she coordinated communications between 180 institutional members globally and provided media training to history museums and human rights initiatives throughout the United States and in Lebanon, Egypt, and the Middle East–North Africa region.

From 2009-2011, she worked as Program Coordinator at Iraq Veterans Against the War, liaising between the organization’s military veteran members and their civilian supporters and funders. She started her professional career at the Cheshire YMCA working directly with families to provide transformative experiences for children in need.

Deborah Farone
former CMO Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP
Farone Advisors LCC

Deborah Farone is a communications and marketing expert with a focus on professional service firms.  She has been the CMO of two of the country’s most successful law firms and the founder of both firms' business development and communications departments.  Deborah has also taught classes as an adjunct professor at NYU in branding for professional services.  Most recently, she was the CMO at the law firm Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP.  On the business development side, she worked with colleagues to create a business and industry intelligence unit to help generate business opportunities, craft practice development plans and prepare partners for all forms of presentations.  She also spent a large part of each day working with professionals on their own business development plans. On the communications side, Deborah dealt with crisis communications, as well as strategic public relations, social media, the Firm’s website and all marketing communications.

Patrick Hanlon
CEO, founder

Patrick Hanlon is the Charles Darwin of branding. Hanlon uncovered what Harvard sociologist E.O. Wilson describes as the “natural selection for social interaction”. Recognized as the world’s leading brand evolutionary, Hanlon is ceo and founder of THINKTOPIA®, a global brand and strategic innovation practice for Fortune 100 clients including American Express, Levis, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Kraft Foods, Johnson & Johnson, Yum! Foods, Wrigley, PayPal, Gap, the United Nations and others. His book Primal Branding: Create Zealots For Your Brand, Your Company And Your Future was published by Simon & Schuster/Free Press, is the seminal book on the evolving role of brands as belief systems.

Gemma Jones
associate director
Space Doctors

As Associate Director at Space Doctors, a global brand consultancy fuelled by the best of cultural and semiotic insight, Gemma works with global brands to help them create strategies, communications, products and experiences that shape positive cultural change.

Gemma’s creativity, energy and command of cultural theory, has led to some of the company’s most exciting and innovative products. She spearheaded the development of its Cymbol app and network – the first real-time digital community in commercial semiotics. She also co-produced Chocophonica, an experimental installation in the British Museum of Food exploring the impact of cultural soundscapes on the taste of chocolate.

Mark Kingsley
School of Visual Arts

Mark Kingsley’s work has ranged from a position at Landor as global creative lead on the Citi account, to branding projects with Ogilvy’s Brand Innovation Group (BIG) and Hewlett-Packard advertising for Publicis. For over 17 years, his studio specialized in music packaging. Today, he holds a position at Collins and does occasional projects under the name Malcontent.

Mark speaks and writes on design and branding, and is currently a Lecturer for the faculty at the School of Visual Arts Masters in Branding/Collins program. In 2016 he was profiled in Print Magazine as one of “56 Inspiring Designers Shaping Our World Today.”

Stephen Para
chief creative officer
SHARE Creative

Stephen Para is a twenty year ad vet and serial entrepreneur.  He has created breakthrough creative executions for brands like Nike, Chips Ahoy!, Vans, USA TODAY, and MTV among others.  He has been helping clients make better creative decisions through the use of data since social media’s infancy. 

He is the Chief Creative Officer for SHARE whose clients include Lego, Fiat, Dramamine, Southern Comfort and The North Face.

Erik Ritchie
chief strategy officer
Zenni Optical

Kristen Saponaro
chief marketing officer

Kristen Saponaro is chief marketing officer for nThrive, responsible for all company marketing and communications strategies and efforts. Additionally, she leads the company’s Enterprise Marketing Council to ensure alignment and successful delivery of all corporate, product and solution marketing efforts. Saponaro brings extensive healthcare and healthcare technology marketing and communications expertise to the role.

Kristen believes in the power of the physician-patient relationship and how this connection is central to heathy people and thriving communities.

Duncan Shaw
co-founder and executive creative director
Living Group

As a co-founder of Living Group, Duncan has over 20 years’ branding experience and has worked with clients that include EY, Citi, HSBC, Morgan Stanley, State Street, Latham & Watkins, Murata and Nomura. During this time, Duncan has gained a great insight into many of the current brand challenges specifically within the financial, professional services and technology sectors.

Duncan is responsible for strategic brand consultancy and building client relationships, as well as the day-to-day management of Living’s fast-paced businesses in London, New York and Hong Kong.

Stacey Sujeebun
director of marketing communications
Konica Minolta

Stacey Sujeebun is the Marketing Communications Director for the Workplace Hub Group at Konica Minolta Inc. Stacey joined Konica Minolta 6 years ago, and was promoted to the Workplace Hub Group in 2015. Here, she was faced with the challenge of developing a communication strategy for a new and disruptive IT product category, from a brand that was previously known for cameras and printers. The expectation was that communications should rival well established IT brands, yet support Konica Minolta’s desire to transition into a credible player in this market through brand extension. Following a lengthy programme of defining the brand and communication guidelines, Workplace Hub was unveiled to the world’s press at the ‘Spotlight’ event in Berlin in March 2017.

Prior to joining Konica Minolta, Stacey worked as a consultant within brand and media agencies in London. She is also a CIM qualified marketing professional, with an MSc in Social Anthropology from University College London (UCL).

Nicole Steinberg
director of communications and brand management
Mural Arts Philadelphia

When & where

Date: 2 November 2017

Time: 08.00 -15.00 
Venue: Espace, 635 W42nd St., New York, NY 10036

Supporting Partners

If you would like to be a supporting or media partner for the Transform conference in New York please email our events manager, Michelle Kibble with your suggestions on how we can collaborate. We're always happy to find creative ways to work with external companies and we'd love to hear from you.


Brand agency @AesopAgency is helping leading US instant mash brand @IdahoanFoods take root in the UK:… https://t.co/ejvuo9u5QL
RT @_digital_impact: Thanks once again to everyone who celebrated with us at the Brewery last night. Read all about the event over @Communi