Story & Strategy: Meet the Alumni CMOs at TikTok, Levi Strauss, and Dunkin’

CMOs Kate Jhaveri T’03, Kenny Mitchell T’04, and Jill Nelson T’16 on their journey to leading the biggest brands in the game—and the unique blend of skills it takes to be a marketing leader today.

In many ways, the role of chief marketing officer is tailor-made for Tuck graduates. The school’s general management curriculum and focus on team-based learning make it an ideal environment for future marketers to learn how the different parts of a business operate. 

Marketing also depends on the kind of well-rounded skillset students gain at Tuck, namely an abiding curiosity about people and their behavior, skill in leveraging data to inform strategic decisions, and the vision to craft compelling narratives that both persuade and inspire. It is right and left brain, words and numbers, art and science.

To understand the unique blend of creative and strategic expertise that marketing requires, we spoke with three alumni CMOs at some of the world’s most respected brands.


Global Head of Marketing, TikTok

Kate Jhaveri T’03

Building strong, vibrant, and supportive communities like the one she joined at Tuck has been a central theme throughout Kate Jhaveri’s decorated career.

As global head of marketing at TikTok, Jhaveri T’03 says she gleans all that she can from the Tuck community and the powerful way it draws together people from different backgrounds and lived experiences to connect and grow relationships around their shared goals, values, and interests. The parallels can be seen in the community TikTok seeks to create for its consumers.

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Global CMO, Levi Strauss & Co

Kenny Mitchell D’97, T’04

In June, Kenny Mitchell D’97, T’04 was named CMO of Levi Strauss, an exciting new challenge for a marketing leader who has managed several esteemed brands—from PepsiCo to Nascar to McDonald’s, and most recently, Snapchat.

Fittingly, one of Mitchell’s most vivid childhood memories recalls the break-dancing crew he formed with his brother and a few friends in their neighborhood. The staples of their outfit during talent shows and performances were a pair of Levi’s and Adidas shell-toe shoes—a look popularized by the hip-hop group Run-D.M.C. He never could have imagined that one day he would be the chief marketer responsible for growing the Levi’s brand globally.

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CMO, Dunkin’

Jill Nelson T’16

One of Dunkin’ CMO Jill Nelson’s fondest memories of her time at Tuck was working with professor Paul Argenti on a beloved Tuck tradition—the Super Bowl Ad Review.

During the annual event, Argenti and co-host Kevin Lane Keller, the E.B. Osborn Professor of Marketing, rewatch some of the most interesting ads that aired and analyze the strategic decisions behind them. This year, one of the top-performing Super Bowl ads that Argenti and Keller discussed happened to be one that Nelson, a T’16, helped create.

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This story originally appeared in print in the summer 2023 issue of Tuck Today magazine.