Melissa Waggener Zorkin
Melissa Waggener Zorkin is the founder and Global CEO of WE Communications, one of the largest independent communications agencies in the world. With more than 1,500 employees, WE Communications is a powerhouse agency in over 100 international markets and has made a substantial impact in the communications industry across the globe.
Zorkin has cultivated partnerships with revolutionary brands, including Microsoft, Pfizer, General Mills, Nike and others, while keeping purpose at the center of the agency and her career. She uses a simple yet powerful formula for success, putting people and purpose at the heart of every decision. Zorkin stays true to the agency’s mission to use the gift of communication to inspire positive action, for clients and the world.
She is an inductee of the PRWeek Hall of Fame, as well as the PRWeek Hall of Femme and the ICCO Hall of Fame. Under her leadership, WE has been recognized as PRovoke North America’s Technology PR Agency of the Year. PRWeek named WE as one of its Best Places to Work since 2020. And since 2019, the Human Rights Campaign has designated WE as a Best Place to Work for LGBTQ+ Equality.
Mentoring the next generation of communications professionals ranks high on Zorkin’s list of priorities. She serves on the boards of the University of Southern California Annenberg Center for Public Relations and ColorComm. In 2021, WE Communications launched the Young Changemakers award in partnership with PRovoke Media to celebrate women from underserved communities who have the power to revolutionize the industry. WE also has established the WE Communications Catalyst Scholarship Fund in partnership with the United Negro College Fund to provide financial resources to BIPOC students in Washington and Oregon.
Through work with local and global non-profits, Zorkin has helped women entrepreneurs start their own businesses, lifted female voices, and voices of color, across industries and championed numerous social impact initiatives that serve communities across several regions, most notably in North America and Africa.
Zorkin speaks regularly about her commitment to purpose-driven leadership, addressing audiences and events such as Cannes Lions, Mumbrella360, ColorComm, SHEQUALITY, Global ICCO PR Summit and the Indie Summit. She also shares her insights on current events, ethics, and innovation through WE’s blog.
When she’s not working, Zorkin enjoys traveling and outdoor activities, around her home in the Pacific Northwest and beyond.