Speakers Bureau

Access to Merkle Thought Leaders
Merkle thought leaders are “wicked smart,” and they have the talent to impart their wisdom effectively to internal and external audiences, as evidenced by their vast experience delivering customized keynote addresses and topical sessions for company- and industry-sponsored events, seminars and webinars.

David Williams

David Williams

Chairman and Chief Executive Officer

See Bio

David Williams is Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Merkle Inc. He acquired Merkle in 1988 and became its 24th employee. Today, Merkle has more than 2,900 employees in locations in the United States, China and United Kingdom, and is the nation’s largest and fastest-growing independent Customer Relationship Marketing (CRM) agency. 

Under David’s leadership, Merkle has sustained 25% annual growth over the last 20 years and was recognized as a market leader by Forrester Research in 2003, 2006 and 2007. In 2014, Advertising Age ranked Merkle as the 22nd largest agency of any discipline worldwide and the 7th largest CRM/Direct agency in the U.S. Also in 2012, Merkle was named to the “Ten Agencies to Watch” list in Advertising Age’s A-List Issue. David was recognized by Winning Workplaces and Fortune Magazine as one of America’s Best Bosses of 2006, and was the 2007 Maryland Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year. 

David is the author of the book, Connected CRM: Implementing a Data-Driven, Customer-Centric Business Strategy, which was published in 2014 by Wiley Publishing. In the book, he shares his knowledge and experience, with the intent of helping world-class brands build stronger, more profitable relationships with their customers. 

David currently serves on the board of directors for the Ad Council. He served for 6 years (2006-2011) on the Board of Directors of the Direct Marketing Association where he also sat on its Executive Committee. He also served for 3 years (2010-2013) as a member of the Board of Trustees at the Howard County General Hospital: A Member of John Hopkins Medicine. David is a frequent speaker at industry events and has written numerous articles and white papers about topics such as Customer Relationship Marketing, Database Marketing and Analytics, Digital Media and Marketing Technology.

He began his career at Butcher & Singer, a Philadelphia-based investment bank, and holds a Bachelor of Science in business administration from Shippensburg University in Pennsylvania.


George Gallate

Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer

See Bio

George is Merkle’s CMO and is also responsible for global development. He has 30+ years' experience in building and leading high performing networks and teams globally. He has worked across all media including seven years leading the global advertising, digital and marketing services of Intel.

George joined Merkle in July 2014 from RKG where he was CEO, following Merkle’s acquisition. Prior to RKG, George spent 27 years at Havas/Euro RSCG. He was the Global Chairman and before that Global CEO of Havas Digital, a network he formed and led since 1997. Under George’s leadership Adweek, ranked Euro RSCG 4D, now Havas Digital, as the largest digital network globally for five years in a row.

From 2005 through 2008 George was Havas’ Regional CEO for Asia Pacific, India and the Middle East with responsibility for 28 offices and more than 1,800 staff. He was based in Shanghai.

George has worked in most categories and has deep tech and B-to-B experience. He's led and worked on Intel and IBM globally, as well as Dell across Asia Pacific. George also has experience in B2C, having worked on Hershey’s, Volvo, Jaguar, National Australia Bank, Novartis, JetBlue, Hyatt, Sheraton and 1-800-Flowers.

George is an accomplished industry speaker, thought leader and innovator. He keynoted on 'Digital – Data – Integration' at the Cannes International Advertising Festival in 2001 and spoke there again in 2010. He was the Jury President of the Cannes CyberLion Jury in 2002.

Craig Dempster

Craig Dempster

Executive Vice President, Digital Agency Group Leader

See Bio

Craig has been a member of the Merkle executive team for nearly a decade. In his current role as Executive Vice President, he leads Merkle’s Digital Agency Group, a business unit comprised of 750 employees who deliver integrated performance media agency services across search, display, social, mobile, email, web development, user experience, and creative services.

In addition to his Digital Agency Group leadership duties, Craig has led Merkle’s corporate development for the past four years. During this time Craig has steered the company’s acquisitions of IMPAQT, a market leading search agency; Social Amp, a Facebook preferred developer that enables the use of open graph data in customer communications; Fifth Finger, a mobile first experience shop; New Control, a digital and direct agency; and RKG, a performance digital media agency.

From 2010-2014, Craig held Merkle’s chief marketing officer position, driving corporate strategy for the business and spearheading the ground-up development of the agency’s marketing communication, PR, and events organizations. As CMO, he led the evolution and rebranding of Merkle from a database marketing company to a digitally enabled customer relationship marketing (CRM) agency, driven by data, analytics, and technology – a concept now known as Connected CRM®.

Previously, Craig was corporate vice president of Merkle’s Content Solutions Group, an organization that combined data and analytics to drive direct marketing acquisition services for Merkle’s clients across industries.

Prior to joining Merkle in 2006, Craig had a long career at Metromail, and then Experian (which acquired Metromail in the late 1990s). Among his positions there were vice president of data licensing, director of market development, director of interactive marketing, and various sales management positions. Craig joined Merkle in 2006, after serving as senior vice president of sales and account management for Experian Marketing Services.

In 2015, Craig and John Lee, Merkle’s Chief Strategy Officer, will co-author a book titled “The Rise of the Platform Marketer," which explores the competencies that marketers need in order to win in a world of digital addressability at scale.

Craig is a frequent speaker and writer on the topic of CRM and digital media and has been published in numerous publications, including Advertising Age, AdExchanger, DM News, and Ad Week. Craig holds a political science degree from Hofstra University.


John Lee

John Lee

Executive Vice President, Chief Strategy Officer

See Bio

As Chief Strategy Officer, John is responsible for Merkle’s growth strategy and the development of products and solutions across industries. John is also a strategic advisor to many Fortune 500 brands including DIRECTV, GEICO, Disney, AARP, and MetLife.

John has more than 18 years of experience in management consulting, digital media, and CRM. Since joining in 2008, John has served in a number of leadership roles, including management of Merkle’s Healthcare, Life Sciences, Wealth Management, Travel, Media, and Entertainment industry practices. In addition to his duties as CSO, John currently oversees Merkle’s Insurance practice.

Prior to Merkle, John played executive roles in marketing, distribution, and technology in Liberty Mutual’s Personal Markets division. He was previously a member of CapGemini’s CRM Strategy practice. John began his agency career in account management and strategic planning with Young and Rubicam, Rapp Collins, and iXL/Razorfish.

John is a frequent conference speaker and contributor to industry publications including AdExchanger, DM News, and AdAge. He is also co-author of the upcoming book on digital media trends “The Rise of the Platform Marketer.”

John is a graduate of Franklin and Marshall College and lives in Wellesley, MA.

Will Bordelon

Will Bordelon

Executive Vice President, Vertical Markets

See Bio

Will Bordelon is an experienced global executive with over 18 years in professional services leadership roles across digital media, marketing technology, CRM, and management consulting. Over the years, Will has become a strategic advisor to executives at leading brands including Citibank, JP Morgan Chase, PNC Bank, Regions Financial, and Susan G. Komen for the Cure. 

As executive vice president, general manager, Will oversees the banking, finance, payments, wealth management, and nonprofit industries for Merkle, representing about a quarter of Merkle’s revenues annually. Will is a member of Merkle’s executive committee and leads the New York office. 

Prior to joining Merkle, Will held various leadership roles with Acxiom Corporation, including six years overseas in China, Singapore, Australia, and New Zealand. Will led Acxiom’s Asia Pacific growth strategy and worked with global brands to advance customer-driven business strategies in the region. 

Will holds a bachelor’s degree in international economics from Louisiana State University and lives in New York City.


Ron Park

Ron Park

Vice President, Merkle Analytics

See Bio

Ron and his team focus on utilizing data, analytics and technology to develop and execute on marketing strategies that aid marketing organizations in understanding their customers and monetizing relationships through personalized experiences. Previously, Ron led Merkle’s Retail Practice and has also led Merkle's Analytic Practice, leading more than 180 dedicated analytic professionals who serve over 50 world-class clients, driving fact-based decision making with analytic methodologies.

Ron has more than 18 years of experience in customer and marketing analytics. Ron has led key engagements with clients across industries, but with a heavy emphasis on retailers like Walmart, Nike, Urban Outfitters and Dell. He has helped clients better define a CRM strategy internally to improve their marketing results through better targeting and through defined processes and methodical approaches to their marketing campaigns.

Prior to joining Merkle, Ron has held positions at Hostway, a leading web hosting company for small businesses, InfoWorks, a member of Rapp Collins Worldwide, and Market Knowledge, now part of Equifax. Ron holds an MS in Applied Math from DePaul University and a BA in Economics from the University of Chicago.

Joseph Colletti

Joseph Colletti

Senior Vice President, Technology Solutions Group

See Bio

Joe has been in the data processing industry since 1984. Joe’s last 15 years have been in specializing international and business to business database and customer relationship marketing (CRM) capabilities for Fortune 500 companies. He has overseen the creation of over 30 CRM databases in the last 11 years. He has a solid industry reputation for delivering these databases cost-effectively, on budget and on time. Joe has written white papers on b-to-b marketing and international database best practices and is considered an expert at understanding strengths and weakness of many different approaches. 


Peter Vandre

Peter Vandre

Sr. Vice President, Digital Analytics Practice Leader

See Bio

As Merkle’s Digital Analytics Practice leader, Peter is responsible for practice development, solution innovation and for leading a rapidly growing team of consultants and analysts. Over the past two years he drove the design and development of Merkle’s digital data integration product. He also has extensive experience in CRM strategy and measurement, and has been recognized for his analytical work in customer engagement modeling, digital media measurement and cross channel attribution. During his career at Merkle he has led analytical engagements with such clients as Dell, Samsung, NIKE, DIRECTV, GEICO, Urban Outfitters, Disney, AARP and others. Peter has spent the last 8 years at Merkle and has more than 14 years of consulting, analytics, and strategic marketing experience. He earned an MBA from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Scott Nuernberger

Scott Nuernberger

Vice President and Marketing Mix Optimization Lead

See Bio

Scott has more than 10 years of experience developing and implementing analytical solutions into marketing programs for many different companies, including GEICO, AEGON, MBNA, Fidelity, DirectTV, Eli Lilly, GSK, and Dell. Prior to joining Merkle, Scott worked for American Express as a statistician and modeler and taught graduate students statistical methods and experimental design at Cornell University. Scott has dual BS degrees in Brain and Cognitive Sciences and Statistics from The University of Rochester, a MS degree in Statistics from Cornell University, and an MBA from Johns Hopkins University.

Scott has been honored with several awards within Merkle, including The "Merkled" Award (Employee of the Year), Database Marketing Excellence, Outstanding Achievement, and the Chairman's Award, which is the highest recognition within Merkle. Scott's team also won the NCDM Excellence Award in the Modeling and Analytics Area with GEICO in 2005. Additionally, Scott has presented numerous times at the NCDM and DM Days, and has published 3 white papers for Merkle since 2008.


Deb Furey

Deb Furey

Senior Vice President, Health Strategy

See Bio

Deb has more than 15 years of experience working with FT500 companies to drive growth through innovative customer relationship strategies. Deb is responsible for healthcare client management, strategy and solution integration and has significant experience working with top pharmaceuticals and biotechs on professional and consumer marketing with companies such as Merck, Boehringer-Inglelheim, Sanofi-Aventis, Shire, Abbott, Roche Diagnostics, Medco Health, Aetna, Bristol-Meyers Squibb and Pfizer.

Prior to joining Merkle, Deb was a Managing Partner leading Fair Isaac’s Pharmaceutical Marketing Practice where she oversaw strategy, execution, sales and client management for Consumer and Physician direct marketing programs. Deb has an Ed.M. in human cognitive development and educational media from Harvard Graduate School of Education and a B.S. from University of Massachusetts.

Kent Groves, PhD

Kent Groves, PhD

Vice President, Strategy, Health

See Bio

Kent has been consulting in healthcare for more than 15 years in the areas of healthcare provider segmentation, brand channel integration, CRM, marketing analytics and direct-to-consumer. Kent is published extensively in a variety of journals including, Research in Social and Administrative Pharmacy, Formulary, the Journal of Clinical Pharmacy and Therapeutics, and the Journal of Database Marketing. Kent is recognized as an expert in the area of factors influencing physician prescribing, and was the author of the chapter on Prescribing Behavior in Social and Behavioral Aspects of Pharmaceutical Care, 2nd Edition, released in March, 2009.

Kent has worked with a number of clients in healthcare including Sanofi, Novartis, Pfizer, AstraZeneca, Genetech, Gilead, Merck, Abbvie and GSK.

Kent has a BS from the University of Guelph, an MS from the University of Saskatchewan, and a PhD in Pharmaceutical Strategy and Policy from Dalhousie University. His PhD dissertation focused on the influence of pharmaceutical marketing strategy on physician prescribing behavior, and he is currently an Adjunct/Assistant Professor — Clinical Pharmacy, James L Winkle College of Pharmacy, University of Cincinnati. Additionally, he was an Adjunct Professor, College of Pharmacy, Dalhousie University, in Halifax, Nova Scotia, was a former Professor of Marketing at Acadia University in Nova Scotia, and holds the designation of Chartered Chemist.