Bozoma Saint John

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Bozoma Saint John
Bozoma Saint John (Photo Cred - Maya A Darasaw, MAD Works Photography).jpg
Born
Bozoma A. Arthur

(1977-01-21) January 21, 1977 (age 43)
NationalityAmerican
EducationWesleyan University (BA)
Occupation
  • Businesswoman
  • marketing executive
EmployerNetflix
Spouse(s)
Peter Saint John
(m. 2003; died 2013)
Children1

Bozoma Saint John (née Arthur; born January 21, 1977)[1][2] is an American businesswoman and marketing executive who is the current Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) at Netflix. Previously, she served as CMO at Endeavor, and chief brand officer (CBO) at Uber until June 2018.[3] Saint John was also a marketing executive at Apple Music until June 2017, after joining the company in its acquisition of Beats Music.[4][5]

Early life[edit]

Saint John was born to Rev. Dr. Appianda Arthur and Aba Arthur (née Enim) in the United States but moved to Ghana at 6 months old.[6] The family returned to the United States and settled in Colorado Springs, Colorado when she was 12. Her father was a clarinet player and member of the Ghana Army before emigrating to the United States to attend graduate school. Saint John cites her father as her biggest inspiration.[7] In 1999, she graduated from Wesleyan University with a degree in English. Her father received a PhD in ethnomusicology in 1977, also from Wesleyan.[8][9][10]

Career[edit]

After college, Saint John worked at the advertising agencies Arnold Worldwide and Spike Lee's Spike DDB, as well as the fashion brand Ashley Stewart, where she was Vice President of Marketing.[3]

Saint John led PepsiCo's foray into music festival-based marketing as head of the Music and Entertainment Marketing.[3] She remained with the company for almost a decade before joining Beats Music in 2014; when Jimmy Iovine of Beats personally recruited Saint John based on her experience in music marketing,[11] Saint John moved from New York to Los Angeles to lead marketing for the company.[12]

Beats was purchased shortly thereafter by Apple[3] and Saint John became the head of global consumer marketing for iTunes and Apple Music, commuting between Los Angeles and Apple's Cupertino headquarters several times a week.[7] Journalists described Saint John's presentation of the redesigned Apple Music onstage during the 2016 Apple Worldwide Developers Conference as her breakthrough moment, with a captivating "passion" and persona that captivated both local and online audiences.[7][13][14][15] Biz Carson of Business Insider said that her appearance helped to emphasize Apple's complete rebuild of its Apple Music software. For instance, she attempted to have the audience sing along with on-screen lyrics, a feature in the redesigned app.[7] Buzzfeed wrote that she was the "coolest" person to ever take the stage at an Apple keynote.[16]

Magazines recognized Saint John's work in superlative lists including Billboard Magazine's list of the top women in music, Fast Company's 100 most creative people, and AdWeek's most exciting personalities in advertising.[10]

On June 6, 2017, Saint John became Chief Brand Officer at Uber.[3] She was given the task of turning Uber into a brand that people love as much as Apple.[17]

In June 2018, Saint John left Uber to join Endeavor as Chief Marketing Officer.[18][19][20] Her reason being was “When I got to Uber I was honest in my desire to go and change essentially what I thought was a challenging environment, especially for women and for people of colour...What I discovered was a lot of people who had a desire to do better, honestly, but couldn’t get out of their own way...At some point it became too overwhelming for me...It became a good lesson for all of us: You don’t need to be the savior, you can save yourself too.”[21]

In May 2020, Saint John launched an iHeart Media podcast alongside award-winning journalist Katie Couric, “Back to Biz with Katie and Boz,” which explores the ways thought leaders, CEOs and innovators are responding to the societal shifts that have been ushered in by the coronavirus pandemic.

Most recently, Saint John launched the #ShareTheMicNow Instagram initiative; alongside Luvvie Ajayi Jones, Glennon Doyle, and Stacey Bendet. On June 10, 2020, 52 Black women took over the Instagram feeds of 52 white women with large platforms, magnifying Black women and the important work that they're doing in order to catalyze change. The campaign was incredibly successful, collecting 17 billion impressions.

Saint John's philanthropic efforts include representing Pencils of Promise as a Global Ambassador to Ghana and serving on the boards of Girls Who Code[22] and Vital Voices.[23]

Netflix named Bozoma Saint John its new CMO on June 30, 2020. Netflix is bringing in Bozoma Saint John to serve as its chief marketing officer, making her the third CMO for the streamer in 2019–2020. Saint John will join Netflix from Endeavor, where she has served as CMO since 2018. She replaces Jackie Lee-Joe who is leaving the company for personal reasons. Saint John started the new role in August 2020.[24]

Personal life[edit]

Saint John was married to Peter Saint John until his death in 2013.[1] They have one daughter, Lael Saint John.[14][25] In spite of all of her professional success, Saint John considers her greatest accomplishment to be mothering Lael. After the death of Peter, Boz also took on the efforts of raising funding for cancer research and has been recognized by the TJ Martell Foundation for her devotion to the cause.

Honors[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Peter Saint John". Burkitt's Lymphoma Society. 2013. Archived from the original on June 9, 2017. Retrieved June 9, 2017.
  2. ^ "Bozoma A Saintjohn United States Public Records". FamilySearch. 2008.
  3. ^ a b c d e Aswad, Jem (June 6, 2017). "Bozoma Saint John Talks About Her New Role at Uber: 'I Consider Myself a Change Agent'". Variety.
  4. ^ Bhuiyan, Johana (June 6, 2017). "Apple marketing executive Bozoma Saint John is joining Uber as its chief brand officer". Recode.
  5. ^ a b c Alba, Davey (June 13, 2016). "Bozoma Saint John Was Badass Long Before Apple". Wired.
  6. ^ "Ghana news: Bentsifi's Tattle, A guy about town". Graphic. June 17, 2016.
  7. ^ a b c d Carson, Biz (June 13, 2016). "Meet Bozoma Saint John, the Apple executive who stole the show at WWDC". Yahoo! Finance.
  8. ^ Drake, Olivia (April 18, 2016). "Class of 2020 Explores Wesleyan during 3-Day WesFest Celebration". News @ Wesleyan. Wesleyan University.
  9. ^ Rockwell, Cynthia (April 25, 2016). "Apple Music's Saint John '99 Recalls Formative Wes Moments in WesFest Keynote". News @ Wesleyan. Wesleyan University.
  10. ^ a b Harrison, Olivia (June 13, 2016). "Who Is The Woman Who Rocked Apple's Keynote?". Refinery29.
  11. ^ Trakin, Roy (April 2, 2014). "Former Pepsi Exec Bozoma Saint John Named Beats Music Global Marketing Head". The Hollywood Reporter.
  12. ^ McBride, Kiah (March 5, 2017). "Bozoma Saint John: Why This Apple Music Exec Is A Badass Boss". xoNecole.
  13. ^ Clark Thompson, Ashlee (June 13, 2016). "Breakout star of Apple's WWDC 2016 Bozoma "Boz" Saint John calls out developers for lack of rhythm". CNET.
  14. ^ a b Weatherford, Ashley (June 13, 2016). "A Black Woman Spoke at Apple's Tech Conference and Twitter Went Wild". New York The Cut.
  15. ^ Opam, Kwame (June 13, 2016). "Apple's Bozoma Saint John is my hero". The Verge.
  16. ^ Misener, Jessica (June 13, 2016). "Bozoma St. John Is The Coolest Person To Ever Go Onstage At An Apple Event". BuzzFeed.
  17. ^ "Apple Executive, Bozoma Saint John as the Public Face of Uber - Biznespreneur". Biznespreneur. June 10, 2017. Retrieved June 12, 2017.
  18. ^ "Bozoma Saint John is leaving Uber for Endeavor". Recode. Retrieved December 1, 2018.
  19. ^ "He told Bozoma Saint John to work for Uber. "Of course, I hung up on him."". Fast Company. Retrieved November 29, 2018.
  20. ^ Aiello, Chloe (June 11, 2018). "Turnaround executive Bozoma Saint John leaves Uber for Endeavor". CNBC. Retrieved June 15, 2018.
  21. ^ Miller, Jeff (March 13, 2019). "Bozoma Saint John Explains Why She Left Uber". Variety. Retrieved June 6, 2020.
  22. ^ "Our Team". Girls Who Code. Retrieved June 23, 2020.
  23. ^ "Bozoma Saint John". Vital Voices. Retrieved June 23, 2020.
  24. ^ "Netflix names Bozoma Saint John its new CMO". adage.com. June 30, 2020. Retrieved November 16, 2020.
  25. ^ "In Memory of Peter Saint John – Obituary". Walter B. Cooke Funeral Home. December 11, 2013.
  26. ^ "Women In Music 2015: The 50 Most Powerful Executives in the Industry". Billboard. December 3, 2016.
  27. ^ Halperin, Shirley (December 5, 2016). "Women In Music 2016: Bozoma Saint John Named Executive of the Year". Billboard.
  28. ^ "14: Bozoma Saint John, 39". Fortune. September 22, 2016.
  29. ^ "Bozoma Saint John leaves Uber after less than a year, named CMO of Endeavor". adage.com. June 11, 2018. Retrieved February 3, 2020.

External links[edit]