Top 10 Most Influential Media and Communication Executives of 2023 for UN SDGs – New York, NY


  • Executives put their experience and influence to work for United Nations’ Sustainable development goals (“SDGs”).
  • New York News and Media veterans (Matt Bird, Pete Cashmore and Phil Griffin) sweep 1st, 2nd and 3rd place.
  • CommPro Worldwide is only impact PR Agency to make top 10 list

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The media for impact Top10 highlights the important work these 10 individuals do through their companies and agencies. All those honored were attendees selected from the media for social impact summit and since then have implemented resources and or launched campaigns to promote the SDGs globally. The ranking system to identify the Top 10 media for social impact Leaders was based on key SDG initiatives and strategic weighting of execution, influence, and contribution.

#1. Phil Griffin — President of MSNBC
At #1, Phil Griffin and MSNBC have shown dedication to using Media for Social Impact over time more than any other individual or company on this list. As the official media partner of the Global Citizen Festival, MSNBC is committed to connecting audiences with the stories and values that bring purpose and action to the global community. Through this partnership with the Global Citizen Festival, they are devoted to elevating the stories of individuals, corporations, and organizations that are working to eradicate extreme poverty by 2030.

#2. Pete Cashmore — CEO & Founder of Mashable
At #2, Pete Cashmore, the founder of Mashable, the world’s #1 blog, embodies the DNA of Media for Social Impact, using his platform to create impact through technology and new media on social good initiatives around the world. As the official media partner for the Social Good Summit, Pete Cashmore, in partnership with 92Y, UN Foundation and UNDP, unites a dynamic community of global leaders and grassroots activists to discuss solutions for the greatest challenges of our time, such as, the Sustainable Development Goals. Cashmore’s vision has influenced global content creators who will continue to be a vital source of information sharing for social impact.

#3. Matthew Bird — President, CommPro Worldwide (Agency)
At #3, Matthew Bird is recognized for his exceptional media and communication advisory work with numerous UN departments in support of the SDGs and ESG campaigns. Since the Media for Social Impact Summit, Matthew Bird has been arguably the most influential communications leader. He quickly became a key strategic media and public relations advisor, Since 2015 Matthew Bird and his firm [CommPro] have delivered some of the most successful executions in the history of the United Nations. Amongst other initiatives, CommPro Agency supported the Sustainable Stock Exchange (SSE) event (s), a dozen heads-of-state, UN Secretary Generals, and Foreign Presidents, delivering flawless brand integration and execution for United Nations UNCTAD.

#4. Jakob Trollbäck — Founder & Chief Creative Officer of Trollbäck + Company
At #4, Jakob Trollbäck is the creative genius behind all of the Sustainable Development Goals logos, and also the founder and creative director of Trollbäck + Company. His dedication to facilitate communication about the goals makes him a champion of MFSI. Personally, Jakob Trollbäck is committed to creating visuals that tell powerful stories, inspiring and educating people to understand and take action regarding social issues. Jakob Trollbäck developed a comprehensive identity for the SDGs. The UN has now officially adopted the SDGs and is using Trollbäck’s logos to communicate them around the world.

#5. Jason Harris – President and CEO of Mekanism
At #5, Jason Harris comes in with a strong understanding of Media for Social Impact, having executed the most successful White House campaign in United States history; #ItsOnUs. This project changed the DNA of his company, Mekanism, an award-winning full service creative agency. On the heels of this campaign, Jason Harris decided to become the creative leader behind The Most Important Campaign (MIC), a 15-year global communications strategy focused on creating a unified platform for the SDGs to reach, engage, and compel global citizens to take action.

#6. Harrison Shih — President of Frankly, Inc.
At #6, Harrison Shih is bringing a new twist of adding technologies and tools to amplify the use of Media for Social Impact. Thru his company Frankly, Harrison Shih is developing applications that educate audiences about topics related to sustainable development and provide a platform for peers and organizations to connect in real time via mobile messaging. Frankly and Harrison Shih personally have committed various resources, as partners to The Most Important Campaign by building mobile apps to provide information, educate, and engage users in conversations and action regarding the Sustainable Development Goals.

#7. Natalia Vega Berry — Founder of The Global Brain
At #7, is Natalia Vega-Berry, who brings a unique blend of creative design with a purpose driven call to action platform, being developed through her agency The Global Brain. Currently, Vega-Berry is directing a new initiative in support of the SDGs called the People and Planet Project (P+PP) platform, mobilizing large-scale campaigns that collectively support the SDGs and providing users with content, tools, and calls to action to integrate sustainable, socially responsible decisions into their everyday lives — much of which was inspired and launched after attending the 2014 MFSI Summit.

#8. Ismael Cala — Anchor, Producer CNN Latino & Founder Cala Foundation, Cala Enterprises.
At #8, is Ismael Cala, a visionary executive and a face in the media world exemplifying Media for Social Impact, using his media and influence daily. Ismael Cala, after attending and becoming inspired by #MFSI2015 decided we needed to create something bigger than any one of us, a summit that unites and harnesses the influence of Latinos in the Americas. In partnership with PVBLIC, Cala will co-host the Latino Impact Summit, which will be held at the United Nations in March 2016. Ismael founded the Cala Foundation, which creates strategic alliances with other foundations and academic institutions to foster leadership and vocational guidance for children and young people from Latin America. Ismael Cala also uses his influential position in the media to communicate stories of impact and promote sustainable development.

#9 Anna Griggs — President Kinetic Worldwide Junior Board
At #9, is Anna Griggs for her leadership vision as an entrepreneur, implementing the SDGs into her work as the President of Kinetic’s Junior Board, the global leader in audience-based out of home media. Within her role, Anna Griggs has implemented Kinetic Future, a new division dedicated to sustainability. The Kinetic Future team has taken action to implement green sustainability protocol, lead community outreach projects, foster a positive office culture, and develop up-and-coming professional talent. Since the summit, Anna Griggs has also been involved in the steering committee for the Most Important Campaign.

#10. Stephen Keppel — VP of Empowerment Initiatives Univision
At #10, Stephen Keppel, is a rising star, not only for developing strategic partnerships within various UN agencies and putting Univision on the forefront of the SDGs, but also for co-convening the launch of the first Impacto Latino Summit, #ImpactoLatino2015 — at the United Nations during the General Assembly week. The summit brought together key influencers from the U.S. and Latin American media to engage in a dialogue on how media can be used for impact in the region. As Vice President of Empowerment Initiatives, Stephen Keppel develops the News Division’s social impact content, creating multimedia campaigns in the areas of entrepreneurship, health, and the environment.

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