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Westwood October Meeting
Thursday, October 19, 2023, 8:00 AM - 9:30 AM PDT
Category: Westwood

Join BP Westwood for their monthly meeting!

 Location: James West Alumni Center, Founders' Room
325 Westwood Plaza, Los Angeles, CA 90095

 Parking: Structure 8 ($8 for 2 Hours - Visitors Parking is Top Level Only)
555 Westwood Plaza, Los Angeles, CA 90095

See below for additional parking info.

8:00am-8:15am: Continental Breakfast + Networking
8:15am-8:45am: Announcements, Testimonials & Introductions
8:45am-9:25am: Guest Speaker, Shawn Smith + Q&A
9:25am-9:30am: Closing Remarks


  PR & Pivots: My Career Journey from UCLA to Shawn Smith Communications

 Westwood October 2023 Speaker

 Recognized as an industry leader, Shawn Smith has served in senior communications roles with WarnerMedia and The Walt Disney Company developing multimillion-dollar campaigns for global brands and franchises. Shawn also previously served as the global head of communications with Osmo, one of the leading edtech companies in the world. In 2023, Shawn founded Shawn Smith Communications providing comprehensive communications services to a slate of corporate clients and entrepreneurs.

During Shawn’s tenure as executive director of communications and publicity for WarnerMedia Global Brands and Experiencers, she developed public relations campaigns for DC franchises including Batman, Wonder Woman and Superman, in addition to leading publicity campaigns for franchises in WarnerMedia’s iconic animation portfolio including Looney Tunes. She led the public relations campaign for “Space Jam: A New Legacy,” introducing more than 200 branded products to fans worldwide, generating more than 10 billion impressions which made Space Jam one of the top consumer products program in the world for 2021. The same year, she partnered with First Lady Dr. Jill Biden and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to integrate DC characters into a program that would inspire kids to get vaccinated at a critical time during the pandemic.

Previously, Shawn served as the director of public relations and brand partnerships for MGA Entertainment, leading corporate communications and public relations for one of the most successful privately-owned toy companies in the world. She created PR campaigns for hit brands including L.O.L. Surprise!, Num Noms, and Little Tikes. Under her leadership, L.O.L. Surprise! became a media sensation and the #1 collectible doll of 2017.

In 2016, Shawn became the first senior manager of communications, diversity and inclusion for The Walt Disney Company, responsible for championing Disney’s commitment to diversity through a variety of communications channels to engage employees and the global community. Previously, in her role as a senior manager of communications with Disney Consumer Products and Interactive Media (DCPI), she developed and executed strategic communications campaigns for DCPI’s $52+ billion licensing business while leading the public relations campaigns for global brands, Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse, as well as Disney films and media networks.

Shawn led a multi-year PR campaign to position Minnie Mouse as a global style icon and expand the franchise’s presence around the world. In 2010, Shawn led the PR campaign to launch Disney Store’s innovative store re-design and the launch of the first Disney Store in New York’s Times Square which featured Disney CEO Bob Iger and New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg as keynote speakers. She also managed key TV and film franchise product launches.

Shawn began her career as a journalist before transitioning into public relations and she spent more than six years working at premier PR agencies. In her first PR role, Shawn worked under legendary publicist Pat Tobin at Tobin & Associates. She developed multicultural PR campaigns at Lagrant Communications and was a senior account executive in the film and television division of global public relations agency Rogers & Cowan. During her agency tenure, Shawn represented a broad array of clients including Southern California Edison, Wells Fargo Bank, Texas Instruments, and Toyota Motor Sales.

Shawn was named one of PR Week’s “40 under 40 Ones to Watch” in 2011. In 2013, Shawn relaunched the Los Angeles Chapter of Black Public Relations Society of America to honor her late mentor Pat Tobin, and served as president of the organization through 2019. In 2018, Shawn was presented with the Pat Tobin Award, BPRS-LA’s highest honor. In 2019, Shawn became the first-ever African American president of the Public Relations Society of America Los Angeles Chapter.

Shawn is currently on the Board of Directors for Women in Toys, Licensing, & Entertainment (WiT) and co-chair of the diversity, equity and inclusion committee. Shawn has been a keynote and featured speaker at numerous colleges and universities and serves as a mentor to young professionals throughout the communications industry. A native of Southern California, Shawn earned a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA).

  Additional Parking Information:

Self-service pay stations are located in all visitor parking areas. Visitors must pay for parking BEFORE they leave their vehicles. Pay station permits are not valid in parking stalls posted for Blue or X permits or otherwise reserved.

 All self-service pay stations use pay-by-plate technology.
 Once parked, go to the nearest parking pay station. 

 Enter your license plate number. If you do not have a license plate number, please enter the last 6 (six) digits of your Vehicle ID Number (VIN). Your VIN can be found on the driver's side door or the lower driver's side of the windshield.

Choose the amount of time that you would like to spend on campus.

Pay using exact cash amount or with a credit card. Pay stations do not provide change. There are no refunds for pay station purchases.

For those using their VIN, please place your receipt on your dashboard.

Cost: Free