NYWICI Connect | Brands at the Intersection of Purpose and Meaning


The COVID-19 pandemic and fight for social justice and systemic change have put brands under the spotlight like never before.

Boardrooms—real and virtual—have become war rooms as brands have had to decide how they planned to keep the wheels turning, how their companies will stay aligned to ideals around purpose, and whether to stay on the sidelines or to engage—and, if they are going to engage, whether to lead or to follow.

Unilever CEO Alan Jope, among others, has said that purpose will be even more relevant to brands going forward. Others have asserted that recent events are accelerating the rise of stakeholder capitalism.

Will the importance of purpose outlast the immediate crisis—is the rise of the purpose-led brand permanent? What will it take today—and tomorrow in the ‘next normal’ for brands to operate at the intersection of purpose and meaning? And will this shift change how investors assess brand value?

Moderated by Linda Descano, CFA®, Executive Vice President, Red Havas, our roundtable discussion will feature Enshalla Anderson, chief strategy officer for North America at FutureBrand and Susan Avarde, co-founder of Brandometry.


Linda Descano, CFA
Executive Vice President, Red Havas

Linda, CFA®, is a past president of New York Women in Communications and currently serves as the organization’s Assistant Treasurer. Linda’s day job is as Executive Vice President at Havas PR. An executive leader and a communications strategist, Linda describes herself a conversation architect, designing and delivering award-winning integrated campaigns underpinned by social media and content marketing. And, as a CFA® charterholder, Linda brings to the strategy table financial and analytical savvy that helps her deliver data-driven results for clients and the boards on which she serves.



Enshalla Anderson
Chief Strategy Officer, North America, FutureBrand

In a career that’s taken her from Wall Street to management consulting and strategic brand development—with stops along the way in New York, London, and Istanbul—as FutureBrand North America’s Chief Strategy Officer, Enshalla excels at ensuring your brand is a lever for business strategy. Enshalla earned her BA in History from the University of Pennsylvania, and her MBA from Harvard Business School. When not at work, Enshalla has two boys who keep her busy and teach her random factoids like the action hero Wolverine hails from Canada.

Susan Avarde
Co-Founder, Brandometry

Susan is the former Head of Global Brand for Citigroup, where she had oversight enterprise-wide. She is a long-time advocate for “Brand” as both a business driver and an intangible asset that is deserving of greater attention from management teams, corporate boards and investors.


Date: Thursday, August 13
Time: 12:00-1:00 PM ET


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