Sign me up for updates. Sign up now

Donate Take Action
Press Release

United Way Re-Engages Audiences Through Ground-Breaking Marketing

CMO Lisa Bowman ushers in radical change, named as AMA’s Nonprofit Marketer of the Year 

Alexandria, VA. (June 20, 2017) – On the heels of United Way’s recent efforts to reshape its brand to one that today is accessible, relevant and meaningful to more people everywhere, the organization is pleased to announced that Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer, Lisa Bowman, who spearheaded the transformation, has been named the Nonprofit Marketer of the Year by the American Marketing Association (AMA) and the American Marketing Association Foundation.

Last year, Bowman created an innovative strategy to help the 130-year-old organization reposition itself in the philanthropic sector. In a drastic departure from previous messages that touted the outcomes of United Way’s work, Bowman refocused the lens from happy people in United Way T-shirts to the problems communities are grappling with across the country. She led the organization into unchartered creative territory with raw imagery and powerful messaging to drive awareness of social crises and to encourage people to become part of the solution.

The cornerstone of the campaign is “Join the Fight,” a suite of public service announcements that show the realities of what happens when the basic building blocks that provide opportunity for all -- education, income and health -- aren’t accessible. The messaging compels viewers to join United Way and become the game changers. 

“Nearly two years ago, Lisa came on board to transform United Way’s brand and increase people’s understanding of our mission and value,” said Brian Gallagher, President and CEO of United Way Worldwide. “Thanks to Lisa’s vision and willingness to challenge the status quo, we’re raising our awareness, motivating more people to engage with the issues that matter to them and becoming the place people turn to create social change in the 21st century.”

A veteran marketer who spent 16 years at UPS, Bowman also led United Way’s workplace campaign for the logistics company – the first company to raise $1 billion for the nonprofit. She says her current role allows her to leverage the intersection of her professional expertise and passion for the work United Way does in 1,800 communities around the world. 

While filming the PSA in Miami, Bowman credits her chance encounter with Deon, a homeless man who appears in the campaign, for giving her work new meaning.

“Deon changed this brand transformation experience for me and ignited my commitment to its success and my professional promise to increase awareness of United Way,” said Bowman. “Deon is featured in our PSA campaign and his photo sits framed on my desk as a reminder of who I fight for.  People like Deon just need a chance and someone to care. This is what drives me each and every day. I am honored to be recognized by my peers at the AMA and share this recognition with my colleagues at United Way.”

Bowman leads the organization’s efforts to create, develop and implement United Way’s global marketing strategies highlighting the organization’s image and 130 -year history of galvanizing donors, advocates, volunteers and workplace partners to fight for the health, education, and financial stability of every person in every community.

Bowman oversees brand, research, media strategy, product/segment marketing and all communications as well as strategic alliances such as the famed NFL and United Way partnership. Under her leadership, United Way has premiered a TV show, “The Hero Effect,” which airs on the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN), partnered with Beyoncé on her Formation World Tour and recently launched the “Join the Fight” campaign.

AMA is the world’s largest marketing association, reaching nearly a million marketing and sales professionals globally. AMA serves organizations and individuals who practice, teach and study marketing. It is a trusted resource for information, tools, education and training to advance marketing practice and thought leadership.


About United Way Worldwide
United Way fights for the health, education and financial stability of every person in every community. Supported by 2.8 million volunteers, 9.8 million donors worldwide, and more than $4.7 billion raised every year, United Way is the world’s largest privately-funded nonprofit. We’re engaged in nearly 1,800 communities across more than 40 countries and territories worldwide to create sustainable solutions to the challenges facing our communities. United Way partners include global, national and local businesses, nonprofits, government, civic and faith-based organizations, along with educators, labor leaders, health providers, senior citizens, students and more. For more information about United Way, please visit UnitedWay.org. Read our Annual Report. Follow us on Twitter: @UnitedWay and #LiveUnited.

Media Contact

Southerlyn Worsham
United Way Worldwide
703-836-7100 ext 321

Christine Sanchez
United Way Worldwide
703-836-7100 ext 564