Diane Hessan

Chairman
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Diane Hessan is Chairman of Communispace, one of the fastest growing social networking companies in the country, “with a Blue Chip client list that would make a Madison Avenue giant jealous," according to Advertising Age. A pioneer in creating online communities to help marketers generate consumer insights, Diane helped found Communispace in 1999 and hasn’t looked back.

Today, Diane leads Communispace’s employees in building and managing the more than 700 private online customer communities the company has created for a marquee list of global corporations. Communispace’s revenues have tripled over the last four years, and the company enjoys a 90+ percent client retention rate.

Diane has spent her 30-year career helping companies become customer-focused—both as a business executive, and as co-author of the best-selling book Customer-Centered Growth: Five Strategies for Building Competitive Advantage. She has received many awards and citations for her leadership and workplace innovation, including Ernst & Young’s Regional Entrepreneur of the Year, and the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce Entrepreneur of the Year. In addition to her professional recognition, Diane is quoted frequently in the business media and is a highly sought-after speaker and expert in the marketing arena.

Diane has committed time and energy sitting on the boards of numerous organizations including Tufts University, Panera Bread, Governor Deval Patrick’s Council on Innovation, the Advertising Research Foundation, Horizons for Homeless Children, and The Boston Philharmonic.

A summa cum laude graduate of Tufts University, Diane received an MBA from Harvard Business School. She is the mother of two grown daughters and co-founder of The Sound Bytes, an a cappella group that writes lyrics about business and performs at major conferences.