NEW YORK (May 28, 2015) – The National Audubon Society today announced the appointment of Jose Carbonell as chief marketing officer and David O’Neill as vice president for conservation strategies and special adviser to the CEO. Both executives are charged with deepening the 110-year-old conservation organization’s reach and effectiveness throughout the Americas.
As chief marketing officer, Carbonell will lead Audubon’s marketing and public relations functions, including branding, online fundraising, advertising, cause marketing and licensing, media relations, social media, and internal communications.
Carbonell comes to Audubon from the U.S. Fund for UNICEF, where he was senior vice president for marketing and communications. Before that, he was vice president for franchise marketing and strategic planning at Nickelodeon, where he managed the network’s marketing budget and developed brand plans for top franchises including Dora the Explorer, SpongeBob SquarePants, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. He has also marketed brands including French’s Mustard, Toys “R” Us, and Welch’s juices.
“What happens when a platinum brand like Audubon meets the marketing savvy behind Dora the Explorer and SpongeBobSquarePants? We’re going to get a whole lot more visible, a whole lot more relevant, and a whole lot more fun,” said Audubon President and CEO David Yarnold (@david_yarnold).“Our birds certainly deserve nothing less.”
O’Neill will join Audubon as vice president for conservation strategies and special adviser to the CEO. He will oversee the implementation of Audubon’s five key conservation strategies and all of Audubon’s work along the Atlantic Coast.
O’Neill comes to Audubon from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, where he served as vice president for conservation programs, overseeing a $75 million grant portfolio focused on habitat and water projects and supporting projects such as the $100 million Hurricane Sandy Coastal Resiliency Competitive Grants Program. Before NFWF, O’Neill was vice president for communications and external affairs at Cherokee Investment Partners and executive director of the Chesapeake Bay Trust.
“David brings topflight vision and leadership to Audubon’s expanding conservation strategy,” said Audubon President and CEO David Yarnold (@david_yarnold). “The breadth and depth of his experience will be tremendous assets as we take on today’s most pressing conservation challenges, from the Arctic to the Gulf Coast and throughout Latin America and the Caribbean.”
O’Neill starts work in June in Washington and will report to Yarnold.
What’s Up with Audubon?
With total revenues in 2014 of $92 million (up from $82.3million in 2009), Audubon is one of the nation’s largest conservation organizations, comprising 22 state offices, 41 nature centers and 23 wildlife sanctuaries and representing 464 local chapters. Audubon – which focuses on the protection of birds and their habitats throughout the Americas – has been “transformed” in recent years, according to Crain’s New York Business, through a sharpened conservation focus and operational overhaul that has increased revenue and decreased overhead expenses.
As reported in The Wall Street Journal, that strategic and operational transformation has attracted new funders and broadened the organization’s reach to younger and more diverse audiences as Audubon expands its international work and achieves conservation victories like a recent ban on lead ammunition for hunting in California.
Audubon’s outreach efforts engage millions of people each year. The organization’s new website at Audubon.org, launched in January, has won acclaim and attracted 2 million unique visitors in its first three months, up 53 percent from the same period in 2014. Audubon’s main Facebook page has nearly 400,000 followers and reaches approximately 1 million people each week as the organization’s supporters share and interact with Audubon’s posts. And the organization’s birds and climate change campaign, which earned more than 2 billion media impressions last fall, recently won a Diamond SABRE award from public relations industry leaders.
“Audubon has a vision for diversifying the base of people who care about the outdoors, and that’s what resonates so deeply with me,” Audubon board member philanthropist Maggie Walker told the Chronicle of Philanthropy last fall. Walker joined Audubon’s board in 2013, along with Jeff Goodby of Goodby Silverstein & Partners and Tony-winning actress and arts and wildlife advocate Jane Alexander. Other recent additions to the organization’s board include David Roux and Ajay Shah of Silver Lake Partners, Alexis Maybank of Gilt Groupe, and former Republican Congressman James C. Greenwood of Pennsylvania.
The National Audubon Society saves birds and their habitats throughout the Americas using science, advocacy, education and on-the-ground conservation. Audubon’s state programs, nature centers, chapters and partners have an unparalleled wingspan that reaches millions of people each year to inform, inspire and unite diverse communities in conservation action. Since 1905, Audubon’s vision has been a world in which people and wildlife thrive. Audubon is a nonprofit conservation organization. Learn more at www.audubon.org and @audubonsociety.