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Brandi Boatner

Brandi Boatner

Manager, Digital & Advocacy Communications, IBM Corporate Communications

Keynote Speaker: Saturday, June 4 | 8:30 a.m.
"Engagement, Experiences & Empathy in the age of DEIB"

Shifting demographics, discrimination and bias and globalization are disruptive forces currently shaping the marketing landscape. The need for brands to respond to a variety of social justice issues has never been greater but it fuels a wider conversation around how marketers are creating content to drive engagement in the age of diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging (DEIB). There are brands and organizations who have been able to navigate strategic communications sharing messages with purpose and other brands who have not. This keynote address will give insights for how marketers and communicators can develop tactics and practices to ensure meaningful change.


Brandi Boatner is an award-winning digital communications professional and prolific public speaker based in New York City. Currently, she serves as the manager of digital and advocacy communications for IBM. In this role, she supports influencer and advocacy efforts across social platforms including enablement and activation both internally and externally for the social and content experience team in corporate marketing.

In this role, she supports key initiatives for the Transformation and Culture function, including social media support for the SVP of Transformation and Culture and digital engagement for diversity and inclusion channels. She leads initiatives that empower managers to help shape the IBM culture from within their teams, drive employee advocacy through social activation and continue to serve as the lead for social justice communications known as Emb(race).

Previously, she was a member of the strategic projects team for internal communications driving employee advocacy while executing social and digital tactics for the SVP of IBM’s Transformation & Culture. In May 2020, Brandi led social justice communications for Emb(race) - IBM’s response in combating implicit bias, discrimination and racial inequality. 

In July 2021, Boatner was recognized and named by PR News as a Changemaker as one of the Top Women in PR. In March 2021, during the virtual PRWeek Awards ceremony Boatner was recognized as Honorable Mention for Outstanding In-House PR Professional – an incredible industry honor. 

In 2019, Boatner became the youngest member to be inducted into the Loyola University New Orleans School of Mass Communications Hall of Fame, known as the Den of Distinction. She was also honored and inducted into the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) Hall of Fame in late 2018.

Brandi is a true advocate for diversity and inclusion serving as a member of IBM's Diversity and Inclusion Council and also serves as the former chair and current professional development chair of the IBM Black Network of New York business resource group. Given her efforts around diversity in the public relations industry, she is one of more than 40 PR leaders featured in the book Diverse Voices: Lessons in Leadership published by the Public Relations Society of America Foundation. Boatner is very active in the public relations industry where she holds several leadership positions within PRSA on both the local and national level. She speaks all around the US and the world on a variety of industry and marketplace topics and enjoys traveling, shoe shopping and spending time with family and friends in her hometown of New Orleans.

Social Media Links:

Twitter:  @ThinkBluePR


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