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Women to Watch Mexico 2020

For the fifth consecutive year, Ad Age and Adlatina are recognizing a group of women who stand out in the field of marketing and communications in Mexico. These 17 women will be honored for their significant accomplishments in the ad and marketing industries at an event in Mexico City on March 31.

Jessica Apellániz, creative VP, Ogilvy Mexico & chief creative officer, Ogilvy Latam
Apellániz is one of the few women to achieve a creative regional managerial position in Latin America. Her ability to recognize talent and create multidisciplinary teams tailored to her clients have made her stand out. Apellániz has been a creative VP at Ogilvy Mexico for two years and has recently been named a member of the Ogilvy Worldwide Creative Council, as well as chief creative officer for Latin America. However, for her, her greatest achievement is finding the balance between being a good leader for an increasingly large creative team and being a good mother for Fabiana, her 3-year-old daughter.

Yune Aranguren, brand director, Victoria Beer, Anheuser-Busch InBev
For the past two years, Aranguren has represented women in key positions in AB InBev. As the leader of Victoria Beer in Mexico, she increased the leadership of the brand in the beer category while celebrating Mexican culture in a very disruptive way, with the aim of shaping culture and entertainment. She has won several awards for the brand, such as Best Local Brand and Grand Prix at the Festival of Media LatAm (FOMLA); Best Seasonal Marketing Campaign at EFFIES MX; and recognition as the strongest brand in Mexico 50 2019 by Brand Finance. She says her purpose is to make Mexico a better place for her son and she does it one campaign at a time. Aranguren specialized in audiovisual communication from the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education (ITESM) and in documentary cinema at the International School of Film and Television (EICTV) in Cuba. She worked as a TV producer for five years at MTV Latin America. Then she became a creative director for five years and worked at La Doble Vida, where she was part of the team that won a bronze lion for outdoors in Cannes in 2013. She then founded and directed the creative department at VICE Media Mexico, where she stayed for two years until becoming part of AB InBev in 2016.

Alejandra Ballesteros, general director, Anonimo
Ballesteros graduated from the Universidad Iberoamericana and specialized in advertising. She began her career at Y&R in customer service and worked in different transnational agencies such as Lowe & DDB. At DDB, she was director of customer service, in charge of brands such as FedEx, McDonald’s, Henkel, PepsiCo, Aeroméxico and Factories de France at a regional and local level. She has consolidated long-term business relationships, based on trust and results, as well as participating in major industry awards. Her main virtues focus on making things happen. She is currently in charge of the general management of Anonymous and is playing a fundamental role in the growth and success of the agency.

Amanda Berestein, managing director, Weber Shandwick Mexico
As director of the communication and public relations firm, Berestein is in charge of providing direction and developing communication strategies capable of raising the reputation and impacting the business results of brands and organizations. Just four years after opening the Mexico office, it was recognized as the fastest-growing office in the network in 2018, and in 2019 it was named the best agency in Mexico by the Sabre specialized awards. Berenstein has a master’s degree in Public Policy from the University of Chicago and a degree in International Relations from the Universidad Iberoamericana of Mexico City. In 2016, she was recognized as one of the 50 marketing leaders by Merca 2.0 magazine; in 2017, she was named one of the 100 Powerful Women by Expansion magazine; and in 2018, PRNews awarded her the Top Woman in PR award. Berenstein is also part of the board of several nonprofit organizations, including CEMEFI (Mexican Center for Philanthropy), The Museum of Memory and Tolerance, COMEXI (Mexican Council of International Affairs), CEMDA (Mexican Center for Environmental Law) and Fundación ProEmpleo Productive A.C.

Alejandro Castillo, head of marketing and communications, Lenovo
Castillo started her career at Starmedia, the first portal for Latin America. She worked in public relations for various multinationals, including Casa Cuervo and Nike, and spent four years as part of the marketing team for Home & Health and TLC at Discovery Channel. She also worked at Samsung and is now Lenovo’s head of the marketing area. At 25, Castillo was recognized by Expansión as one of the 30 people under 30; she was also recognized as one of the top 10 PR professionals in Mexico by the magazine Quién.

Marjorie Castillo, marketing director, MetLife
Castillo is an executive director with 20 years of experience in marketing, innovation and sales in multinational companies, including Mondelez and Kimberly Clark. She has worked in markets such as England, Venezuela, the U.S. and Mexico and is recognized for creating effective teams, for ensuring business growth, adopting a human-centered approach and a data-based strategy. Castillo has a degree in Chemistry from the University of Sciences in Montpellier, France; a postgraduate in marketing from IESA (Venezuela); and executive education from MIT Sloan, Boston. A native of Venezuela, she has lived in Mexico City since 2005, and is married with two “proudly Mexican” children.

Mayra Contreras, general director, Teads Mexico
Contreras has a degree with honors in computer science from La Salle University and a postgraduate degree in business development from Harvard Business School. She has 25 years of professional experience in the technology sector. Before joining Teads, she worked for companies such as Microsoft, Google and Spotify, where she developed successful digital growth programs. In addition to her extensive experience in the digital world, she has been involved in entrepreneurship, gender equity and women’s empowerment in the industry. She has been a speaker in front of international audiences and recognized as a top coach and mentor of employees at Google. In 2008, Contreras joined Alejandro Martí to establish the Mexico SOS organization as director of communication and citizen participation. She has been recognized as one of the top 300 business leaders in Mexico and one of the top female CEOs in the technology sector in Mexico by CEO magazine.

Andrea Davila Jolly, corporate marketing director & business clave, Banco Azteca
Davila Jolly has a degree in communication sciences with a specialty in advertising from the Universidad Anáhuac. In her 24-year career in the world of communication, she has worked in global advertising agencies in Mexico and the U.S., leading large clients such as Mars and P&G. During this time, she was responsible for the construction of iconic brands such as Pedigree, Whiskas and Huawei, locally and regionally. In 2019, she made an important leap to the client-side as director of marketing at Banco Azteca, with the challenge of consolidating the image of the bank and developing key businesses. Her passion for people led her to study the specialty in human development at the Humanist Institute in Gestalt Psychotherapy, where she attends the specialty in Gestalt Approach. She is also a mom, with two daughters.

Gail Gibford Capdepon, VP of brand, creative services and sponsorships, AT&T
Having led marketing at AT&T since 2018, Gibford Capdepon is recognized as a lover of marketing, a career that has led her to live multiple experiences, from working on toothbrushes and tubes of toothpaste for North America to being part of the transformation of Dove Real Beauty and become a global brand manager. She has taken the lead in projects in different countries such as Knorr in Brazil, and Coca-Cola in Mexico and Europe, before returning to Mexico to join AT&T.

Claudia Gorostiza, regional manager of core nutritional brands, Bayer
Gorostiza began her career 17 years ago as a strategic planner at BBDO Mexico, where a couple of years later she became the youngest leader in the management team. She led the planning team as associate VP for more than four years, working across local, regional and global brands in different industries, before moving to Bayer’s client-side, where she has performed various decision-making functions. From 2013 to 2017 Claudia directed global brands based in the U.S. Recently, she joined the Latam team as regional manager of core nutritional brands, where she has been able to share her passion for marketing and add value by leveraging her global experience to grow the business.

Paola Mainero, wider Latam and vitamins innovation lead, GSK
Mainero is a marketing leader with 14 years of experience in mass consumption companies (Procter & Gamble) and in the pharmaceutical industry (Sanofi, Novartis, GSK). During her career, she has led global and local brands such as Head & Shoulders, Koleston, Voltaren, Allegra and Theraflu, from local and regional roles, with experience also in shopper marketing and innovation roles. Passionate about the consumer, launches, business growth and redefinition of strategies in the market, Mainero believes most important thing for her is to be able to leave a mark on the businesses she leads and the teams that surround her.

Charlotte Oudin, general director, Barilla Mexico
With 17 years of experience in commercial and marketing areas, Oudin stands out as a leader in multifunctional and multicultural teams, having developed her career in international markets including France, Italy and Mexico. Since April 2015, she has been the general director of Barilla Mexico, with responsibility for the development and implementation of strategies for the pasta and pasta sauces market in Mexico, as well as aligning the global management of Barilla and Grupo Herdez, and meeting the objectives of both businesses. Oudin lives life with a passion. She likes to analyze her environment, create and develop creative strategic opportunities, integrate a vision of teamwork and contribute to building sustainable environments for people, communities and our planet.

Priscila Pacheco Menocal, general director, The Fiat Chrysler Association of Distributors
With experience and knowledge gained across several industries, Pacheco Menocal has a special sensitivity to understanding the needs of executives at all levels, reading the environment, leading work teams and establishing collaborative relationships. Having entered the financial sector, achieved extensive knowledge in analytical-financial accounting, during the past seven years she has worked successfully in advertising and marketing in the automotive sector—with a clear focus on new business, cost efficiency and digital trends. Nowadays, Pacheco Menocal faces a new challenge as the head of the FCA Association of Distributors, where she leads a team of professionals and coordinates the initiatives of distributors to generate benefits to the network, establish areas of opportunity and strategies to take advantage of them. She is always looking towards an equitable future and adapting to new challenges.

Vivian Rodal Rubio, marketing director, Subway
Rodal Rubio has a master’s in integral marketing from the Universidad Anáhuac del Norte and a degree in business administration from the Universidad Iberoamericana. She worked with world-class companies such as Danone, Henkel, Nestlé and Pizza Hut, and also marked history by being the first woman to hold an address at Scribe. Rodal Rubio is a leader par excellence, skilled at creating strong brands, organization, teamwork, proactivity in the face of new challenges, results in orientation and passion. Her great human qualities have allowed her to transcend work relationships to personal ones. She is the mother of two girls.

Georgina Rodriguez, brand engagement director, PepsiCo Latam
Rodriguez directs the strategic agenda of consumer promotions, sponsorships and celebrities at the regional level, connecting with consumers for Pepsico Latam snack brands. During her 23 years at the company, she participated in the confectionery and snack business and was in charge of the Cheetos brand for which she won her first Effie awards. She is passionate about making things happen and reaching millions of consumers in Latin America through entertainment and bringing them closer to their favorite teams, characters and celebrities, from UEFA through Spiderman to Daddy Yankee. For Rodriguez, it is important to promote the cultural transformation to foster talent and be an example for her daughters, aged 19 and 17.

Michelle Solano, brand executive director, Estée Lauder, Aerin and Tom Ford
Solano has led the Estée Lauder brand in Mexico for the past four years and took the brand to No. 1 in the prestigious skin care market. With 20 years of work experience for multinational companies in brand management, marketing, communications and commercial areas, Solano developed and implemented commercial and marketing strategies to launch and support brands in the markets of Mexico and Latin America for a wide range of categories, including home, nutrition and beauty products. She graduated from La Salle University as a civil engineer and has a master’s degree from IPADE (Pan American Institute of Senior Business Management).

Gabriela Vargas, CEO, Starcom Mexico
Vargas has 25 years of experience in the industry, taking the position of Starcom CEO at the end of 2018. She works with enthusiasm and passion with her management team to continue developing the brand. Vargas has extensive experience in media and advertising, with an integrated career on the client side (P&G), within agencies (LB, Initiative, Carat, now in Starcom) and at a media provider (Clear Channel). Her first incursion at the agency was at Leo Burnett, working with global clients and participating in the consolidation of several new businesses. She held various management positions in agencies, gaining experience in different sectors and categories, such as pharma, technology, entertainment, banking, automotive, drinks and food. Vargas is a graduate in communications, in addition to having studied in commerce and certifications in management and digital transformation.

A luncheon to celebrate these 17 Women to Watch Mexico honorees will be held on March 31 at the Club de Industriales in Mexico City. Those interested in attending should contact María Belén Martínez Cima at mbmartinezcima(at)adlatina.com.

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