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Work experience

Jan 2011Present

MARKETING CONSULTANT

INSIGHTOVATION

Developed an insight driven innovation process for business strategy, product management and integrated marketing called INNSIGHTOVATION™; a methodology that helps companies grow through marketing led strategy and initiatives.

Apr 2007Dec 2010

Director of Product Marketing

SentrySafe

Succussfully managed SentrySafe's (privately held) portfolio of products including P&L responsibility, 3 year product strategy and roadmap. Implemented the product planning and NPD processes that successfully managed product lifecycles and growth. Developed, mapped and implemented the integrated marketing process, strategic planning process and annual planning process. Developed the strategic plan for the marketing department. Led a team of Product Managers and crossfunctional NPD teams to introduce more new products in SentrySafe's history.

Led the commercialization strategy including new position, packaging, merchandizing, website, social media, cause marketing, email blasts, publications, promotions and tradeshows. Directed Research Department to gather relevant insights that could be translated to innovative product solutions. Built onsite research center to cut research costs by 75%.

Successfully created and managed the Product Marketing Department for SentrySafe's portfolio of products.

Reorganized staff, developed product strategies and roadmaps, implemented product planning and NPD processes that manage product lifecycles and growth.   Led the commercialization strategy including new position, packaging, merchandizing, website, social media, cause marketing, email blasts, publications, promotions and tradeshows. 

Developed, mapped and implemented the integrated marketing process, strategic planning process and annual planning process.   Developed the 5 year strategic plan resulting in a path to grow the business by $60 Million and a 5.5% CAGR.

Rationalized legacy line saving $450,000 in operations and launched more new security safes within 18 months than had been launched in Sentry Safe's history representing $19 Million of new product net sales.

Refocused and rationalized the SentrySafe Gun Safe line resulting in an operating income (OI) swing from a $1.3 M loss to a $1.3 M OI gain in a single year.  Developed a 3 year product strategy and map to differentiate the product line with innovative new products and expand into new channels for continued growth.

Using consumer research, led the strategy and refresh of SentrySafe's line of Fire Resistant Safes, one of the largest platforms of the portfolio.  While increasing consumer satisfaction but not cost, the new line resulted in SentrySafe maintaining their leadership share of the category vs. aggressive new competition from major US brands and strong new players from Asia. 

20052007

Product Manager, Marketing

Birds Eye Foods

Revolutionized the frozen vegetable category with the introduction of SteamFresh Brand leading to a new national platform with a 5 year product lifecycle.  The introduction added another 4 points to Birds Eye's market share allowing it to regain its market leadership after 10 years of decline. Steam Fresh innovation is now an industry platform across frozen categories.

Developed co-branding and rebranding lifecycle plan for Freshlike Vegetables and McKenzie's Southern Vegetables into the Birds Eye franchise allowing for the management of one national brand vs. a house of brands.  Consolidated marketing spend saving 700,000 while boosting actual promotional activity allowing for a 5 point share swing for Birds Eye vs. Green Giant.  McKenzie's strategic plan improved the line's 5 year CAGR from negative 19% to a positive 3.5%.

Introduced 2 new Birds Eye value added vegetable product lines and over 20 line extensions for the Birds Eye Brand resulting in a 10% increase of top line volume as well as increasing lines profit margins by 2 points.

19862000

Sales & Marketing Manager

Procter & Gamble

Drove Laundry & Cleaning Products bottom line (Tide, Ivory, Dawn) by managing $90 Million in sales to Merchant Market Customers for the Industrial Chemical and Global Oleo Chemicals Groups.  Emersonian Award winner for the Chemicals Division for growing the business 17% in a single year.  Responsible for Marketing projects allowing Customers to better integrate into P&Gs systems both saving $250,000 year while improving customer satisfaction.  

Successfully managed and grew sales of Procter & Gamble's Food Division Brands such as Pringles, Jiff, Duncan Hines, and Crisco.    Responsible for commercial execution, in-store merchandising and promotional activities for Grocery Retail.  Part of the Sales & Marketing Team that relaunched Pringles Brand, introduced Duncan Hines Ready-to-Eat (RTE) Cookies and a variety of Duncan Hines Baking mix extensions. 

Education

19952000

Non degreed

Kellogg’s James L. Allen Center for Executive Training, Northwestern University
Aug 1980May 1984

BS

Clarkson University

References

Norman Ellard

“The hallmark of Karen's work with me at P&G was really a strong "can do" attitude on taking on the most difficult of assignments. Besides being an important part of the Sales Marketing team, Karen was willing to go the extra mile on other projects. We had a very important IT innovation and I chose Karen to lead it, because I knew it would get done in spite of obstacles. It was! It is my pleasure to recommend Karen.”

John Hyden

“I had the privilege of working with Karen at Birds Eye Foods. Karen is one of the best marketing brand managers I have worked with. She always listened to my concerns about projects then trusted my judgment. She worked this way with all team members. She was always willing to go the manufacturing facilities and see how products were made and learn the limitation of each line that she had marketing responsibility for. She was a great project leader keeping all cross functional teams on task by motivating them in a positive way. I use Karen and her style whenever discussing what qualities make for a good relationship between R&D and Marketing. I truly enjoyed my time working with Karen and hope to work with her again. John Hyden Director of Product Development- Pinnacle Foods – Birds Eye Foods Division.”

Wendy Preiser

“It was great to work with Karen. She is a highly motivated, creative marketer who is unafraid to embrace a challenge. She is highly analytic and able to see the major drivers that make the difference in performance. She managed her business with a strong understanding of the strategic priorities.”

Tom Nelson

“As a key member of P&G's Customer Business Development Organization, Karen delivered results by establishing a deep understanding of the competitive marketplace and leveraging her knowledge/relationships to create joint value.”

Dave Hogberg

“Karen is a very talented marketer and great person to work with. I was very fortunate to have hired her and worked with her at Birds Eye Foods during a time where step-change new product develoment was critical. Karen is gifted with an inate ability to understand and identify consumer needs and the leadership skills to work effectively across functions to quickly commercialize products into market place successes.”

Christine Keane

“I thouroughly enjoyed working with Karen. She is an energetic marketer who thinks logically and makes data driven decisions.”

Greg Bonsib

“Karen is extraordinarily skilled at finding rich consumer insights that drive innovation. But Karen is brilliant at quickly translating that innovation into highly desired products that drive sales, build the brand and improve margins.”

Spencer Maid

“Karen is a results driven Marketer that focuses on the needs of customers. She has tremendous bandwith to think strategically and execute at the tactical level. Her technical Marketing skills were valued greatly by our organization.”

Some of my Portfolio

Custom

Kodak Scholar, Conrail Scholar, Regents Scholar, SWE, Chemical Engineering Honor Society, AKф 

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Summary

Recognized as a Turnaround Manager, I am a Marketing Executive leading the strategic direction of Businesses, Organizations, Brands & Product Lines, transforming them from under-performing platforms into growth portfolios by understanding the target audience, crystallizing the message and positioning for growth through product development, communication and relationships. Passionate leader specializing in integrated marketing and communication plans. Extensive experience with powerhouse brands from both Fortune 500 and privately held companies including Procter & Gamble, Birds Eye, SentrySafe and Nestle. Broad and unique marketing and engineering background, combining strategic thinking, creativity and boardroom presence. Skilled at assessing and prioritizing opportunities, creating strategy maps, leading development, overseeing execution, owning and delivering objectives, P&Ls and budgets. Thought leader, capable of articulate communication that transforms the way teams, consumers and customers think, feel and relate thus intensifying the brand experience to an emotional connection and relationship. Expert practitioner and leader of both traditional marketing methods and emerging techniques, from concept through execution, including publications, media, banner ads, brochures, web strategy, word of mouth, social media, cause marketing, PR, merchandising, packaging, email blasts. Significant Specialties Proven Business Strategist (3 Year Strat Plans)Successful Product, Brand & Marketing Strategy Cutting Edge Integrated Marketing & Social Media Owner of P&Ls & Top Line Growth Leader of Product Teams & New Product Development Skilled at Creating Value Propositions for Stakeholders Focused on Intensifying Consumer & Customer ExperiencesDynamic Leader of Global Teams & Businesses