Microsoft announced that Mark Penn will join the company as corporate vice president for strategic and special projects, with an emphasis on key consumer initiatives.
Penn currently is the worldwide CEO of the public relations firm Burson-Marsteller and CEO of the polling firm Penn Schoen Berland LLC. Penn, who has been based in D.C, has been active in national and international politics at the highest levels and has served as strategic consultant to top Fortune 500 companies, including Ford Motor Company, Merck & Co. Inc., Intel Corp. and McDonald's. He has consulted with Microsoft since 1998.
In addition, he is the author of "Microtrends: The Small Forces Behind Tomorrow's Big Changes," a New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestseller about the impact of small groups in politics, business and social change, building on his original identification of the "Soccer Moms" as a critical demographic bloc. He has also been a regular contributor to national publications such as TIME Magazine, Huffington Post and The Atlantic.
At Microsoft, Penn will lead a cross-functional team focused on consumer initiatives and will draw on his experience in strategic development, branding and positioning to develop and deliver breakthrough ideas that meet consumers' changing and dynamic needs. He will continue to write about consumer, demographic and social trends but will not be involved in public policy issues for Microsoft.
Penn will remain based in D.C. but will spend substantial time in Redmond, Washington.
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