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Elise James-DeCruise

Chief Equity Officer

Elise is an award-winning learning and development professional and a diversity, equity, and inclusion practitioner with over 20 years of global experience in designing and delivering programs and experiences through the four lenses of workforce, workplace and marketplace and community.

She was recognized by Chief Learning Officer magazine for the launch of the New Marketing Institute, has received numerous industry awards for excellence in education, and for her commitment to innovation, education and diversity and inclusion, she was featured in Forbes as a top female tech leader to watch.

As the Ad Council’s chief equity officer, Elise oversees the organization’s ongoing commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion—ultimately informing every aspect of the Ad Council’s mission, workplace culture and public-facing communications.

Prior to joining the Ad Council, she was the chief diversity, inclusion and people officer at Marcus Thomas, LLC, where she scaled and led efforts to advance diversity, equity, and inclusion, learning and people development initiatives, and provided critical leadership on Marcus Thomas’s multicultural marketing efforts.

Elise previously led global multicultural marketing and inclusion initiatives at MediaMath for over eight years. She also founded the award-winning New Marketing Institute at MediaMath, where she oversaw internal and external training initiatives, certification, enterprise education and global program development.

Elise is the L&D strategic advisor for GoCoach, and she maintains an active presence on boards and advisory committees including Big Brothers Big Sisters of America, the Startup Institute, NYC Tech Talent Pipeline, IAB’s Diversity and Inclusion Task Force, American Society of Training & Development’s 2019 Program Advisory Committee and the ATD Forum Advisory Group.

She holds a bachelor’s degree in communications, PR, and advertising as well as a master’s degree in instructional leadership and business communications from Robert Morris University. A former Division I student athlete who led the nation in rebounding, she remains committed to the development of student athletes both on and off the court.