Karen Kaplan joined Hill Holliday as a receptionist, hoping to save enough money for law school. Three decades later, she’s had just about every job there is to have at an agency, gaining valuable insight into how to approach each business challenge with a fresh perspective.
A key player in Hill Holliday’s significant growth as a national powerhouse, Karen is now Chairman & CEO overseeing the network of three agency brands: Hill Holliday, Erwin Penland, and Trilia Media. With an executive team composed of over half women, Karen is also one of the few female agency chairmen in the country.
Honored by both Business Insider and Ad Age as one of the most influential women in advertising, she’s helped the agency develop a proven ability to help brands fight a daily share battle in the noisiest categories. The proof lies in the successes of such key clients as Bank of America, Dunkin’ Donuts, Johnson & Johnson, and John Hancock.
She has been a contributor to and featured in numerous publications including Ad Age, AdWeek, Forbes, Fortune, Huffington Post, and Inc., and is a sought-after speaker appearing on stages, television, and radio outlets around the country. She serves on the boards of directors for the Ad Council and numerous other civic and professional organizations; is a trustee of Fidelity Investments’ Strategic Advisers Funds and a director of Michaels Stores.