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Date of Summit: September 20, 2019
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Clemson CMO Summit Logo
In partnership with Forbes
Clemson CMO Summit Logo

The Art & Science of Building a Brand

Our inaugural event will offer perspectives from forward-thinking industry leaders who leverage data, insights and creative strategies to build some of the world’s best brands.


As part of our mission to educate future brand leaders, the Erwin Center for Brand Communications is hosting Clemson University’s first CMO Summit in partnership with Forbes on Friday, September 20th, 2019. This event is a great opportunity for brand and agency leaders to discuss topics related to this year’s theme, “The Art & Science of Building a Brand,” with our students, faculty and industry professionals here on Clemson’s campus at the Watt Family Innovation Center. 


Clemson Students/Faculty

Registration is at capacity; however, we will work to accommodate as many as we can in the Watt Center the day of the event. Seating in the auditorium will be first come first serve, but there will be additional rooms available for live viewing in case seats are full. 



We are thrilled to have great brand leaders and Clemson alumni joining us for this year’s event, and we will announce additional speakers soon.

John Dillon from Denny's

Jenny Rooney

Editor of CMO Network, Forbes

Jeff Brown Ally

Jeff Brown

CEO, Ally

Andrea Brimmer from Ally

Andrea Brimmer

Chief Marketing & PR Officer, Ally

Vivek Bapat from SAP

Vivek Bapat

SVP and Chief Strategy Officer, Marketing & Communications, SAP

Leslie Sims from Ogilvy

Leslie Sims

Chief Creative Officer, Ogilvy U.S.

Kevin Purcer from Chick-fil-a

Kevin Purcer

Director, Customer Digital Experience, Chick-fil-A

John Featherston from Chickfila

John Featherston

Senior Director, New Ventures & Innovation, Chick-fil-A

John Dillon from Denny's

Singleton Beato

Chief Diversity & Engagement Officer, McCann Worldgroup

John Dillon from Denny's

Matt Woehrmann

CEO, Fitzco

Fabio Tambosi from Adidas

Fabio Tambosi

Global, Sr. Director – Brand Communications and Training, Adidas

Deb Gabor from Sol Marketing

Deb Gabor

CEO and Founder, Sol Marketing

Andy Thomas from McLaren Automotive

Andy Thomas

VP, Marketing & Communications, McLaren Automotive

John Dillon from Denny's

Bobby Garza

VP, Experiential Creative Director, Forefront Networks

John Dillon from Denny's

Teri Smart

VP, Marketing, Forefront Networks

John Dillon from Denny's

John Dillon

SVP, Chief Brand Officer, Denny’s

John Dillon from Denny's

Andrew Ignatow

President, Sterling Brands

John Dillon from Denny's

Brody Hartman

Executive Director, Strategy and Creative, Sterling Brands


Speaking engagements, panel sessions, and networking opportunities will take place from 8:00 a.m. – 6:30 p.m. on Friday, 9/20 at the Watt Family Innovation Center on Clemson’s main campus. 


Watt Family Innovation Center Atrium

Watt Family Innovation Center Auditorium

Watt Center Atrium and Fourth Floor Rooftop

Watt Center Fourth Floor Rooftop


Clemson College of Business Logo
Watt Innovation Center Logo
Forbes Logo


VENUE: Clemson’s CMO Summit will take place on Clemson’s main campus in the Watt Family Innovation Center located at 405 S Palmetto Blvd, Clemson, SC 29634

Watt Innovation Center Building Picture

PARKING: Parking passes will be available in lot C-4 for CMO Summit attendees. This lot is accessible from Perimeter Road., via Lambda St. The Erwin Center Team will be present with parking passes (look for a golf cart and a National Championship flag to get your parking pass). There will be a shuttle running from approximately 7:15 AM to 7:45 AM to the Watt Family Innovation Center. Contact Becca Pulsifer for information at 407-488-2012.



Thank you for your interest and participation in Clemson’s first CMO Summit. Below you will find information on the most convenient airport, as well as directions on booking a hotel with discounted rates. Please note that speakers should plan to arrive Thursday morning, 9/19. All CMO Summit events open to students, faculty and professionals will take place Friday, 9/20.

GSP Airport: Greenville-Spartanburg International Airport (GSP) is the closest airport to Clemson, and is approximately an hour drive to campus. I-85 S provides the quickest route.

Hotel Reservations: A block of rooms are available for booking at the Tru Hilton close to Clemson’s main campus for attendees and speakers. Reservations can be made with a discounted rate via the button below or by calling the hotel directly at 864-280-8800 and referencing the “Forbes CMO Summit.”



If you have any questions about event details, please fill out the contact form below, or contact Katie Hildebrand, the Executive Director for the Erwin Center for Brand Communications. She can be reached via phone at 419-651-2751 or via email at

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