Chief Marketing Officer Roundtable

Learn From Some Of So Cal’s Most Successful Marketers

san-diego-ama-cmo-career-sep-2014-260Don’t miss this opportunity to network with marketing leaders as they share the secrets of their success.  Find out how they rose to the top of their profession, what kept them motivated, and how they overcame setbacks.

Join these experts for an evening of cocktails, networking, and collaboration:

  • Sam McCully – CMO of Avoya Travel
  • Sarah Polk – CMO of Sommetrics
  • Richard Cran – Fmr Senior VP of Marketing at Jack in the Box
  • Ken Schmitt – CEO of TurningPoint Executive 60Search (moderator)

Discover the benefits of mentoring—how to find the right mentor and how to mentor others.  Develop a professional action plan to take charge of your career in the new year.

Who Should Attend?

AMA Members who are mid to senior-level integrated brand marketers will benefit from this event. But all are welcome!

If you’re driven to achieve success—no matter how you define it—you won’t want to miss this opportunity to engage in one-on-one conversations with Southern California marketing leaders.



Richard Cranrichard-cran-1

Experienced Marketing and Business Innovator

Innovative, strategic Marketing executive with +20 years energizing brands, generating sales, and delivering profitable bottomline growth for brands such as Jack in the Box, Taco Bell, T.G.I. Friday’s, Under Armour, Nike, Hyundai, Audi, Harley-Davidson, Bolthouse Farms, Atkins, Murad Skincare Laboratories, ING Direct/Capital One 360,, Samsung, Logitech, Vail Resorts, New Caledonia Tourism, Singapore Airlines, and QANTAS.

Core Skills and Expertise: Business, brand, marketing and communication strategy; consumer behavior change; innovation; product launch and go-to-market planning and activation; advertising, social media, digital, PR, promotion and experiential integration; media planning and activation oversight; media and production budget optimization; ROI maximization; P&L management; and securing executive and stakeholder alignment.

Sam McCullysam-mccully

VP, Marketing at Avoya Travel

Sam has a passion for life both personal and professional. Living in San Diego with his wife and two children he’s an avid surfer and outdoor enthusiast. This gives him balance and focus that he consistently applies to his profession. Sam is an accomplished marketing leader with a rare blend of global, cross-category experience. He has an impressive track record of building high-performing teams, innovative marketing strategies, highly effective campaigns, and record sales growth for medium and large brands including Avoya Travel, the Boeing Company, the Chicago Cubs, Coca-Cola, the Ford Motor Company, Microsoft and Samsung.

Sarah Polksarah-polk

SVP, Marketing Sommetrics

Sarah is a dynamic leader with a proven track record of engineering explosive growth for global organizations including a multi-billion dollar medical device manufacturer, a global virtual reality medical simulation company and pharmaceutical/biotech companies. She has extensive experience in medical device product management and has built and/or expanded marketing departments. With her financial background and management expertise, she has led businesses through difficult transitions, mergers, acquisitions, and turnarounds.

She is adept at product marketing and working with engineering teams to craft medical products that meet the market’s needs. Other strengths include: decisive management, improving shareholder value, ROI maximization, strategic positioning, creative conceptualization, sales, brand management, public relations and social media. She has the experience to inspire cross-functional global teams to exceed business goals and build highly-productive, long-lasting business relationships.

Ken Schmitt (Moderator) ken-schmitt

Founder and CEO, TurningPoint Executive Search

Author, “LinkedIn Hiring Secrets for Sales & Marketing Leaders”

With over 18 years of experience, I founded TurningPoint Executive Search in 2007. We specialize in National Sales & Marketing Recruitment at the mid-level and above. 85% of our placements earn $100K-$300K total compensation and no industry represents more than 15% of our business. This diversity allows us to cast a wider net, tapping into a much deeper talent pool and exposing our clients to high impact strategies from a variety of sectors, ultimately avoiding the “group think mentality”.  CLIENTS INCLUDE: Episource, Sommetrics, Frost & Sullivan, Forward Leap Marketing, Normerica, CSA Travel & Madcap Software


As a fellow entrepreneur who grew up in a self-employed household, I have a deep appreciation for the intricacies of small businesses and the impact that a highly effective sales & marketing leader will have.



Thursday January 19, 6pm-9pm

  • Cocktail hour mixer 6-7
  • Roundtable discussion 7-8
  • Cocktails and networking 8-9



525 B St
San Diego CA 92101
First Floor Meeting Room


The building is on the corner of 6th & B and guests can enter the parking garage on 6th.  There is also plenty of street parking near the building.


A capacity crowd at Procopio in downtown San Diego heard our panel of area executives share their perspectives on marketing in general and marketing career development in particular. These were among the many insights unearthed on the evening:

  • Each panelist identified the part of being a CMO that is most inspiring, with Sam McCully saying it’s building a quality team, Sarah Polk appreciating the impact a company can have on the world and Richard Cran enjoying problem solving with a group of people from diverse perspectives.
  • All three said that nowhere is networking more important in career advancement than at the executive level.
  • Our panelists agreed that data analysis is a now critical skill even among CMOs. Sam said having the data on your side is great for job security, Sarah said you can’t justify your positions and strategies without having data to back them up, while Richard reminded us not to lose track of the big picture as we get more immersed in the details.
  • Richard suggested if you’re a manager you should imagine you’re the weather report for your team — the people who work for you will take their cues from you, so mind your attitude. Also, as a CMO, it’s your job to be a violent protector of your brand.
  • Sarah said it’s critical to be resilient, to rebound from failure, and to be agile – pivot when called for by circumstances.
  • Sam said that if you’re trying to decide whether or not to join a new employer, sit down in the lobby and watch the employees entering and leaving. Their expressions will tell you plenty about how they feel about their jobs.

If you missed the event, click through the photos below and be sure to join us next time!