Chairman and Chief Executive Officer
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 2,000 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 2013, 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 served for 6 years (2006-2011) on the Board of Directors of the Direct Marketing Association where he also served 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.
President, CRM Capabilities
Alongside Patrick Hennessey, Tim jointly leads and manages Merkle’s business. He brings more than 20 years of experience in database marketing and customer relationship management. Tim has worked to build and implement database marketing programs and strategies in a wide variety of industries for leading companies such as American Express, Continental Airlines, DirecTV, GEICO, and Hyatt Hotels, to name a few.
Prior to joining Merkle, Tim worked for AT&T Bell Laboratories as a consultant from 1990 to 1995. He was formerly with direct marketing agency Rapp Collins Worldwide where he built and led the analytical group. Tim joined Merkle in 1997 to build its analytical group, and joined with Patrick Hennessey to grow the company’s Data Solutions Group to annual revenues of $30M.
In 2007, Tim led Merkle’s entire Client Management Group, including analytics and data services, where he built the analytics group to more than 100 statisticians. In 2009, he was named to lead Merkle as co-president, together with Patrick Hennessey. In addition to leading and managing the company, Tim and Patrick work with Merkle chief executive officer David Williams to set Merkle’s vision and customer relationship marketing approach.
Tim holds a Master’s degree in statistics from the University of Minnesota.
President, Vertical Markets
As co-president, Patrick leads Merkle’s business together with Tim Berry. Patrick joined Merkle in 1997 as an account executive. Two successful years later, he was promoted to vice president of sales and marketing, where he and Tim worked hand-in-hand to oversee the delivery of data-driven marketing solutions to Merkle’s clients. Over the years, he has served the company in a wide range of vital roles. Patrick is an avid student of business management, always searching for new tools and approaches that can help the company continue to grow.
Along with Tim, Patrick led the development and enterprise-wide socialization of Merkle's unique approach to recruiting, hiring, and retaining the best people in the industry. He also drove the definition of Merkle's innovative Reference-ability 2.0, a program that ensures client satisfaction and he has been a leader in identifying key meeting rhythms that has allowed the company to operate in an optimal mode. Patrick and Tim have developed a working relationship that has produced greater results than if they worked independently – essentially, a ‘one-plus-one equals three’ approach.
Patrick attended University of Arizona and lives in Clarksville, MD.
Executive Vice President, CMO and Customer Experience Group Leader
Craig’s responsibilities are three-fold: marketing, corporate development and management of Merkle’s customer experience business unit. In this role, Craig is charged with developing the enterprise marketing strategy and overseeing the team that manages all of Merkle’s marketing activities, encompassing demand generation, industry marketing, product marketing and marketing communications functions that include public relations, events and advertising. He also leads Merkle’s corporate development ventures, including the evaluation of acquisition opportunities, as well as championing the company's innovation initiatives, in which new capabilities are incubated and developed. Additionally, Craig manages the customer experience group, a business unit comprised of digital media capabilities including social, search, display, email and mobile, as well as creative and communication services which encompass experience design, communications consulting, and direct/digital marketing studio and production.
Previously, Craig was corporate vice president of Merkle’s Content Solutions Group and led a team that further established Merkle’s proprietary data solutions and offerings. He has also served as co-leader of the company’s Quantitative Solutions Group, a core pillar of Merkle’s strategy.
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 after serving as senior vice president of sales and account management for Experian Marketing Services.
Craig holds a political science degree from Hofstra University.
Executive Vice President, Business Development
Dave Paulus is executive vice president of business development for Merkle and has led Merkle’s new business development strategies for the past 9 years. In his position, Dave creates and leads Merkle’s sales strategies and is responsible for the global pursuit of new business across all vertical markets. Dave also oversees the on-boarding of Merkle’s newest clients and the delivery of all services throughout this process.
Prior to joining Merkle in 2002, Dave helped develop and launch Return Path, Inc., a provider of strategic email solutions. As that company’s vice president of sales and business development, Dave drove direct sales efforts and coordinated reseller partnerships. He previously served as vice president of new market development at DoubleClick/Abacus, responsible for developing new products from the Abacus database and launching them into markets outside the traditional and core catalog clients. Dave began his career at TransUnion, where he worked in various roles within several divisions of the company for thirteen years, including vice president and general manager of TransUnion’s insurance division and vice president of sales and client management within TransUnion’s direct marketing division, PerformanceData. Dave earned a BA from Clemson University.
Executive Vice President, Quantitative Marketing and President of Merkle APAC
Zhengda "Z" Shen oversees Merkle's analytics and data businesses, core pillars of Merkle's connected CRM capabilities and value proposition. Z provides oversight for delivery of quantitative marketing solutions to Merkle clients and is responsible for developing the operating group's future direction and growth strategy.
Z also serves as the President of Merkle's Asia Pacific business overseeing Merkle's global delivery centers in China as well as the development of businesses in the APAC region.
Z joined Merkle in 2000 and has served the company in a variety of leadership positions. Prior to his current role, Z held the position of EVP, Chief Operating Officer overseeing technology and operations. Earlier, he held leadership positions as SVP of Quantitative Solutions Group and Client Group Leader for Merkle's financial services and insurance vertical markets.
Zhengda holds a Master's degree in Applied Statistics from The Ohio State University and a Master of Business Administrative degree from The Johns Hopkins University.
Executive Vice President, Client and Advisory Services
Steve leads Merkle’s Management Consulting Group and is a member of our Executive Committee.
As a practitioner, Steve is focused on helping clients successfully change and embed advanced customer insight into customer strategies, marketing, and customer operations. He is typically engaged in enterprise transformation projects that include reinventing multi-channel customer experiences and transforming the client organization to deliver the target experience. Steve has deep experience in insurance, healthcare payer and retail industries. He has been published extensively on the topics of CRM and business analytics, most recently in the CNBC guest blog and MIT’s Sloan Management Review.
Steve joined Merkle in January 2011 with 25 years' experience in direct marketing and strategy consulting. He spent over 15 years at PwC Consulting/IBM Global Business Services, where during his tenure he held global strategy leadership roles in Customer Relationship Management (CRM) and Business Analytics and Optimization (BAO) practices. Prior to that, he was a consultant at A.T. Kearney and manager at Chadwicks of Boston.
Steve holds a Bachelor of Science in Economics from The Wharton School of Business, focused on entrepreneurship and management as well as an MBA from Harvard Business School, focused in general management and strategy.
Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer
Jean is responsible for the finance function at Merkle and brings more than 28 years of financial and operational experience in global services companies to her role as CFO. Jean is a proven business transformational leader who has worked across multiple functions at an enterprise level. Jean's approach is collaborative and results oriented.
Jean's experience in financial and operational management with global services companies was most recently as the Senior Vice President of Operations at Quintiles. Quintiles is the global market leader of biopharmaceutical development and commercial outsourcing services. At Quintiles, Jean led an enterprise business transformation program to change core business and operating models, processes and systems.
Prior to Quintiles, Jean spent more than 25 years in a variety of financial and operational positions at Accenture, one of the world's leading consulting companies. Throughout her tenure with Accenture, Jean was responsible for instilling financial and operational rigor through dynamic operating management models which met emerging business demands and supported the strategy of the company. In addition, she drove large scale change implementations for core business processes, key financial processes and specific enterprise transformations.
Jean has a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Executive Vice President and Chief People Officer
Jim is Merkle's first ever Chief People Officer and joined the company in 2010. Undaunted by joining a company that proudly had no human resources function, Jim's focus is on making Merkle a "talent factory" and leveraging the company's unique corporate culture to support its expansion and breakout as a leading CRM agency.
Under Jim's leadership, Merkle hires over 300 top marketing professionals annually. He heads the company's learning initiatives under the umbrella of Merkle University, where he also serves as Dean of the School of People & Culture. Jim initiated Merkle's unique coaching-based approach to performance management and oversees the company's total rewards program.
Jim's career in human resources spans three decades working as a corporate officer and senior executive in Fortune 500 corporations, mid-sized and emerging companies. His experience includes start-ups, mergers & acquisitions, turnarounds, IPO and fast growth companies. He's created award winning HR Programs that have received national recognition and is known for his non-traditional approach to human resources management, customer-oriented management style and for being an open, straightforward communicator. Jim earned a Master's degree in Human Resources Management from the American University and a Bachelor of Arts degree in International Politics from The Catholic University of America. He is a frequent speaker and has taught in the graduate programs of Johns Hopkins University and Marymount University.
Executive Vice President, Vertical Markets
John leads Merkle’s industry practices in Insurance and Wealth Management, Life Sciences, and Travel, Media, and Entertainment. John has more than 16 years of agency, management consulting, and industry-side experience in digital media, marketing strategy, technology, and analytics. John has been a part of the senior management team since 2008 and currently serves on Merkle's executive committee.
Prior to joining Merkle, John played executive roles in marketing, distribution and technology in Liberty Mutual's Personal Markets division. He was previously a senior manager in CapGemini's Financial Services consulting practice. John has also held agency management positions with Razorfish and Rapp Collins Worldwide. Some of John’s most significant clients have included MetLife, Travelers, WellPoint, American Express, US Bank, GlaxoSmithkline, and AARP.
John is a graduate of Franklin and Marshall College and lives in Wellesley, MA.
Executive Vice President, Vertical Markets
Will leads Merkle's vertical market practices for Retail Banking, Consumer Finance, and Non-Profit. He is responsible for delivery of services to existing clients, growth and profitability of the business, and the continued application of Merkle's core value proposition to the challenges and opportunities of these industries. Will has more than 16 years experience in the delivery of digital agency services, marketing technology, and management consulting. Joining in 2008, Will is a member of the senior management team, leads the New York office, and serves on Merkle's executive committee.
Before joining Merkle, Will spent five years in senior leadership roles in the Asia Pacific for Acxiom Corporation, leading growth and development for China, Australia and New Zealand, and establishing offices in Singapore. Will worked with innovative global brands in the region to advance the development of customer driven business strategies, and to integrate Acxiom's local acquisitions into an organized regional footprint. Prior to that Will held various roles with Acxiom in the US.
Will holds a BS in international economics from Louisiana State University.
Executive Vice President and General Manager, Retail
Mike is a seasoned executive with more than 23 years of professional services experience across a broad spectrum of disciplines including client account leadership, sales, and consulting delivery. He also has significant operations experience through roles in client relationship management, business development, technology management, and business alliances Mike has also worked globally with retail and consumer products clients that are expanding into European and Asian markets.
In his role at Merkle, Mike’s focus is on articulating how Merkle’s industry-specific approach to delivering Connected CRM™ solutions is an important enabler to retailers aiming to make smarter business decisions and more effectively use customer insights.
Mike joins Merkle from Accenture, where he spent 13 years in a variety of senior level positions. Most recently, he was Managing Director in Accenture’s North American Retail Practice, where he was responsible for client account leadership; managing retail ERP sales and delivery; defining retail and IT strategy; and delivering outsourcing services. Prior to Accenture, Mike spent 11 years with IBM Corporation where he was a Principal with IBM Global Services.
Mike holds a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from the University of Notre Dame where he majored in management information systems.
Executive Vice President and General Manager,
Life Sciences, Hi-Tech and B-to-B
Glenn Lapidus is an experienced executive with more than 23 years of global professional services experience driving business growth and executing strategic solutions for clients across telecommunication, technology, aerospace and manufacturing industries. Glenn has built and run businesses large and small across a diverse set of market conditions. He has extensive international experience, having lived and worked in Australia, China, Brazil and Mexico. Glenn thrives on driving C-level impact, focusing on bringing shareholder value through innovation, creativity and excellent operational execution.
In his role at Merkle, Glenn’s focus is on articulating how Merkle’s industry-specific approach to delivering Connected CRM™ solutions is an important enabler to technology and b-to-b companies aiming to make smarter business decisions and more effectively use customer insights.
Glenn joins Merkle from IBM, a globally integrated technology and consulting company, where he spent 11 years in a variety of senior-level positions. Most recently, Glenn was the general manager of growth markets application services where he was responsible for driving accelerated growth within various IBM practices, leading strategy and execution for multiple global IBM brands in addition to transforming business results within growth market unit (GMU) application services. Prior to IBM, Glenn held leadership roles with Archstone Consulting, Deloitte Consulting and McDonald’s Corporation.
Glenn holds a Master of Business Administration degree from Northwestern University’s Kellogg Graduate School of Management, majoring in marketing, and a Bachelor of Science degree from Northern Illinois University, majoring in Accounting. Glenn is also a CPA.