Melissa Waggener Zorkin
To her clients and colleagues, Melissa Waggener Zorkin is renowned for her belief in purpose, potential and possibility. Under her direction, the agency has grown from a two-person communications agency in 1983, with Zorkin and co-founder Pam Edstrom, to become one of the world’s largest independent communications companies with a talented work force of more than 800 strong. Regularly connecting with her employees and developing future agency leaders are among her top priorities.
For Zorkin, it’s always been important that successful businesses use their influence to help make a difference beyond profits, and she is recognized frequently for her efforts. A Mercy Corps board member since 2006, Zorkin is particularly interested in helping women entrepreneurs start their own businesses, and she has been recognized for her contributions to helping to complete a library at the L & A Memorial Academy in Ghana, and for her philanthropic efforts throughout Africa on behalf of Mercy Corps and the Adakum Foundation. Zorkin also ensures that WE walks its talk by devoting 1% of annual pre-tax revenue to charitable giving and pro-bono services, and by giving employees 16 hours off annually in service to their favorite non-profit organizations.