Stephanie Sage Smirnov is Managing Director of Consumer Marketing in the NYC office of Edelman. Previously, she was CEO, U.S. at DeVries Global, an award-winning consumer PR firm headquartered in NYC. The road to her current position was winding: a journey towards a Ph.D. in Art History and an academic career shifted course in 1992 when Stephanie decided to pause her graduate studies and spend the summer as an executive assistant in the office of designer Donna Karan. The summer fling turned serious when Stephanie fell hard for NYC: she never left, and academia became a distant memory. After a series of promotions at Donna Karan, Stephanie became PR Director of the company’s beauty division. In the two decades since, she’s held leadership roles both on the agency and client sides of the PR business, evolving from a beauty specialist to a consumer generalist with expertise across diverse categories: wellness, food, beverage alcohol, home care and retail. As she assumes roles of increasing executive responsibility, Stephanie remains firmly grounded in the practice of PR. This combination of big picture thinking and front-line capability makes her an invaluable resource for her clients, who currently include P&G; (over 15 brands), Boston Beer Company, Tyson and Pepperidge Farm. The need to stay hands-on in the PR trenches is particularly true in the case of social media: Stephanie began blogging in early 2008 and is now well-known on the speaking circuit as an expert on brand-blogger relations. She's authored two popular blogs: PR Mama (2008-2010) and Like the Vodka (2010-2013). She has been praised in the blogging community as a "marketer who gets it," and regularly shares thoughts on the industry and pop culture with her 5200+ Twitter followers. Stephanie is involved with several industry organizations: Board of Governors of Cosmetic Executive Women, Management Committee of the Council of PR Firms of America and the Editorial Advisory Panel of PR News. When not working, she is busy deconstructing "Mad Men," killing at Words with Friends and cheering enthusiastically at her son's swim meets.
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