Universal Music Group’s Richelle Parham to Deliver Keynote Address at Drexel Westphal Commencement 2022
May 16, 2022
Drexel’s Antoinette Westphal College of Media Arts & Design is thrilled to announce it 2022 Commencement speakers. The Westphal Commencement ceremony will be held on Thursday, June 9, 2022 at the Mann Center for the Performing Arts. For the latest Commencement updates, please visit Drexel.edu/commencement.
Keynote Speaker: Richelle Parham ('91)
Richelle Parham (’91), President of Global E-Commerce & Business Development for Universal Music Group, will address the Class of 2022 as keynote speaker. Ms. Parham is a seasoned C-Suite executive, who possesses more than 25 years of global strategy and marketing experience for prolific corporations such as Universal Music Group, eBay, Visa, Digitas and Citibank. She has a proven track record of leading high-performing business and marketing teams, utilizing strategic and analytical decision-making and experience design expertise to successfully drive key business performance.
In 2021, Ms. Parham joined Universal Music Group (UMG), the world leader in music-based entertainment, as President of Global eCommerce and Business Development. Parham oversees UMG’s global e-commerce strategy and business development across the company’s iconic labels, publishing company, operating units, and territories. Parham leverages her experience in eCommerce, consumer marketing, audience growth, business development and direct-to-consumer to elevate UMG’s artists and drive the UMG vision of a holistic fan-centric ecosystem that complements partner platforms.
In 2019, Ms. Parham joined WestRiver Group, as a Managing Director. WestRiver Group provides integrated capital solutions to the global innovation economy with investments focused in technology, life sciences, energy, and the experiential sector which Parham led. She was previously a General Partner of Camden Partners, a private equity firm, focused on investing in growth stage global consumer companies. While at Camden Partners, Ms. Parham founded and served as Executive Chairman of the board of directors of Shyn, a direct-to-consumer oral care company spun out of a Camden Partners portfolio company. Prior to Camden Partners, Ms. Parham served as Chief Marketing Officer of eBay, where she leveraged her background in consumer and digital marketing to develop strategies and execute all marketing activities to reach 180+ million active eBay users. Ms. Parham was responsible, globally, for the eBay brand strategy and brand marketing, Internet marketing and CRM. She was also responsible for all areas of eBay North America marketing, including customer product marketing, loyalty and relationship marketing, seller marketing and social. Prior to joining eBay, Ms. Parham served as head of Global Marketing Innovation and Initiatives, and head of Global Marketing Services at Visa Inc.
Her experience also included 13 years at Digitas, a leading global marketing agency, where she held senior leadership roles, including SVP General Manager of the agency's Chicago office. Throughout her career, Ms. Parham has received many awards and honors, including being named to Forbes “50 Most Influential CMOs in the World”, Fast Company “Most Creative People in Business 1000”, Savoy “Most Influential Women in Corporate America” and “Most
Influential Black Corporate Directors“, and Black Enterprise “Power in the Boardroom.” Additionally, she received the Women of Influence award by the Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal, while being inducted into the World Association for Cooperative Education Co-op Hall of Fame. She has also served on the board of directors for Best Buy (NYSE: BBY) since 2018, e.l.f. Beauty (NYSE: ELF) since 2018, LabCorp (NYSE: LH) since 2016, and Scripps Network Interactive (NYSE: SNI) from 2012 to 2018. Ms. Parham holds double Bachelor of Science degrees in Business Administration and Design Arts from Drexel University. She became a member of the Drexel University Board of Trustees in 2014.
Graduate Student Speaker: Kimberlyne Bethea, Retail & Merchandising
Graduate student speaker Kimberlyne Bethea (MS Retail & Merchandising), Director of Business Development and Customer Care for Cocona, Inc., is a Drexel University and Fashion Institute of Technology alumna with an educational background in fashion, buying and merchandising. Kimberlyne’s career achievements include Senior Buyer with QVC; Senior Account Manager with Sean John clothing brand; and Global Sales Manager for Pacific Coast Feather Co. She started her career in Macy’s executive training program in designer handbags and accessories. Kimberlyne co-founded and assumed the role of Chief Merchandising Officer of On Camera Sales and Marketing, Inc., a retail marketing firm specializing in television and online product marketing.
A native Brooklynite and New Yorker, Kimberlyne is a PROUD wife of 30+ years to her high school sweetheart, mother of three children, and newly appointed “Mom Mom” to her first grandchild. A seasoned expert in product design, buying, merchandising, marketing, and brand management, Kimberlyne’s passion for fashion manifested as a child and has accounted for her longevity in the fashion and retail industry. Kimberlyne plans to pursue her doctorate degree in Retail and Merchandising and continue to cultivate her luxury woman’s lounge and sleepwear line “Sleeping Pretty.” Kimberlyne is committed to sharing her industry knowledge and experiences through teaching and mentorship
Undergraduate Student Speaker: Anaya Cherry, Entertainment & Arts Management
Undergraduate student speaker Anaya Cherry (BS Entertainment & Arts Management) aims to change the worlds of entertainment & media through live entertainment, business, & entrepreneurship. Throughout her college career, she has been an active mentor of the THRIVE: early move-in retreat for student of color program, an active Black Student Union executive member, and a Spring 2021 Initiate of the Epsilon Phi Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. She was also a scholarship recipient & member of the Liberty Scholars Program.
In her professional career thus far, she has worked with companies such as Our People Entertainment, ESM Productions, REC Philly, and Comcast NBCUniversal. Most recently, Anaya was a Production Runner for the NBC Sports production of the 2020 (2021) Olympics in Tokyo, Japan.
After graduating, she intends to continue cultivating her skills in entertainment and business within Drexel’s accelerated MBA program, with the aspirations of building her own entertainment company.