Member Spotlight


CURRENT LIVELIHOOD: Presently, I am the Sr. Director for Corporate Marketing Communications for the U.S. division of NTT Communications (, and have worked here since 1999. My areas of responsibility include our corporate branding, media relations, analyst relations, social marketing and overall reputation management. I also represent the Americas on our global corporate marketing team.

Headquartered in Japan, NTT is one of the largest companies in the world. In fact, in the last Fortune Global 500, we ranked #31 and are the largest telecom as ranked by revenue. Inside Japan, we offer the same consumer and business services as we see here in the U.S. from AT&T and Verizon. However, outside of Japan we are strictly B2B, and focus on large enterprises and multinational corporations. In this segment, my division focuses on four main areas – data centers, cloud computing, private networks and Internet connectivity.

NTT has low brand awareness in U.S. as we are often the brand behind the brand in our industry. However, we have significant assets including the 2nd largest internet backbone in the world (our networks touch 160 countries) and the 2nd most data center floor space in the world (we have 140 of them). Increasing the brand awareness of my company is a real challenge, but it is also what I love most about my job. We must constantly fight for headlines, introduce ourselves to media, analysts and prospects, and get quite creative in how we increase our brand awareness on a tight budget. I am a huge believer in the power of PR and we have had many successful years of results to prove it.

CHILDHOOD AMBITION: Doesn’t every young boy want to grow up to be a football player? I have worked in many businesses and many industries and have been fortunate to have great exposure to many great managers. When I was in graduate school in the mid-90’s, we were using PINE for email and Netscape had just been invented. It was then I realized that the Internet would provide a tectonic shift in the way the world communicates, and that I wanted to be part of it. That was when I really knew what I wanted to do.

DRAW TO THE COMMUNICATIONS FIELD: I’ve been involved in marketing our business in different divisions for years, but the one thing we lacked was a great PR strategy. PR is a critical element in the marketing mix, and I like to tell people that earned media paves the way for our demand generation activities to be more successful.  For a company lacking the brand awareness that many of our competitors take for granted, I saw the opportunity and need for us to double down on PR and establish the necessary credibility with our clients and prospects. NTT is a world leader in several areas, and first to market with many new technologies, and I wanted to be the leader to communicate this.  I have an exceptional agency providing support every step of the way ( 

ALMA MATER: I received a B.A. in Economics from Vanderbilt University in Nashville. After a few years in the corporate world, I went to graduate school and received an MBA from Southern Methodist University in Dallas.

HOMETOWN: I grew up in Clearwater, Florida, which is right on the Gulf Coast. I was very entrepreneurial growing up, but I spent a lot of time sailing, skiing, fishing and diving. After college, I moved to Houston for work, but spent all of my free time in Austin. Even after moving to Dallas for graduate school, I still spent time in Austin. When the opportunity arose to move here (finally!), I jumped at the chance to relocate my family here, and we’re so happy to call Austin home.

MOST MEMORABLE EXPERIENCE AS A COMMUNICATIONS PROFESSIONAL: As the communications leader for my company, there have been so many great experiences from successful product launches to planned campaigns to crisis communications and more. However there are two events that stand out that both involve Twitter. When Twitter was in its infancy, they came to NTT for our hosting services and global network reach, and we supported their growth from then until 2011. In 2009 no one had any idea how important Twitter was to the international protest and demonstration scene until we announced a maintenance window at the moment Iran was holding (democratic?) elections. We had a crisis of a different type on our hands, and NTT was thrust in to the spotlight in a matter of seconds (see the LA Times story here). Twitter experienced massive growth that summer, but come August, they succumbed to a distributed denial of service or DDoS attack, in which millions of infected computers target and shut down Internet sites. Twitter was totally offline as a result. As their hosting and internet access provider, we were again in the spotlight, and I was running crisis communications on a moment’s notice from a family reunion (see the New York Times story here). In both cases, we were honest, transparent, and quick to offer as much information as we could, as well as quick to offer executive briefings.

RECOMMENDED READS: I read as many business books as I do fiction, and have come across some that drive home excellent points. One I really liked was Execution: The Discipline of Getting Things Done, which helps set out a framework for effective decision making. The one I’m reading now is very interesting – Keeping Up with the Quants. Regardless of our different industries, we are collecting immense amounts of data, and we, as managers, need to be able to process this data, and extract value to make intelligent decisions. 

FAVORITE THINGS ABOUT AUSTIN AND FAVORITE AUSTIN RESTAURANTS: I love cycling, and Austin is a great place to ride. We have wide, smooth roads, plenty of hills, and in just a few minutes, you’re whisked out into the country. There are many organized charity rides, dozens of riding groups, and everyone seems to have friends to join up with. Riding is a great way to see the city and surrounding area.

We are fortunate to have so many great restaurants that focus on the food first that I can’t list all of my favorites here. Three of my favorites are:

  1. Cooper BBQ
  2. Barley Swine
  3. The Peached Tortilla