Bridget Russo joined Shinola in 2012, relocating from her native Tribeca to the company’s Detroit headquarters in 2014. As Chief Marketing Officer she oversees global marketing and communications, building the American design brand through storytelling and well-made products. By bringing skilled manufacturing jobs back to Detroit, Shinola is also having a positive social impact on the community — a key element of their brand. It’s a perfect fit for Bridget, who made a name for herself in the fashion industry by pursuing projects she found ethically compelling, including the establishment of her own consulting firm focused on fashion ventures with a philanthropic angle.
My first job ever was… At a store in New York, which is now closed, called FAO Schwarz. I worked in the doll department.
My proudest accomplishment is… Somehow impressing my mother, who is not impressed, ever.
My boldest move to date was… Moving to Detroit.
I surprise people when I tell them… That I moved to Detroit.
The biggest marketing challenge companies face today is… Considering how much information is getting thrown at consumers on a minute-to-minute basis, the ability to break through and capture their attention is increasingly more challenging.
My best marketing advice for companies today is… Be authentic. Go with your gut. Stay true to the brand.
My biggest setback was… Leaving a job that I really loved too quickly for silly reasons. I would have eventually left, but I probably had a good five years to go before I did that. I did it in haste. I was turning 30 and thought I needed to grow up.
Work/life balance is… Never checking your emails after work, unless absolutely necessary. Keep two separate phones: one personal, one work.
My best advice from a mentor was… Take time to congratulate even the little successes of your team.
If you googled me, you still wouldn’t know… That I am socially awkward and shy.
I stay inspired by… The people I work with everyday.
The future excites me because… I have hope, despite everything that’s going on in the world today. Human beings are human beings, and we’ll continue to do great things.