Uber hires Bozoma Saint John as Chief Brand Officer

Uber has hired marketing pioneer Bozoma Saint John as Chief Brand Officer, making her one of the few black female C-suite executives in Silicon Valley. Her experience includes memorable PR campaigns at Spike Lee’s advertising agency for PepsiCo, and Apple music. She has been honored as one of Billboard Magazine’s Top Women in Music and Top Executives 40 under 40.

Her hiring comes at a time when Uber has been drowning in bad press about its treatment of women engineers, kicked off by former Uber engineer Susan Fowler’s allegations of sexual harassment and mismanagement.  The fallout from those allegations ultimately led to an investigation by Eric Holder and CEO Travis Kalanick stepping aside. Moving forward to change public perception of Uber may be a challenging task for Ms. Saint John. Her first week on the job coincided with the nonprofit Black Girls Who Code turning down a donation from Uber, citing the donation’s appearance as more of a PR  move than  focused on real change.

Nonetheless, Ms. Saint John knew what she was getting into, according to an interview with Glamour Magazine. She said, “There’s no more exciting moment for me as a brand strategist than a turnaround.”

We hope that she will be able to turn around the brand and lead a culture shift at Uber from within.

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