StartOut News & Press

StartOut Appoints Carla Hendra to Board of Directors

Brand, marketing and digital leader, and Ogilvy Growth & Innovation CEO invited to join board

StartOut, the leading national non-profit organization that supports, educates and connects LGBTQ+ entrepreneurs, today announced the election of its newest board member Carla Hendra for 2022. Carla, a respected veteran of the global brand, marketing, communications, and digital spaces, has been appointed to the non-profit’s growing and evolving Board of Directors. Carla’s addition continues to strengthen StartOut’s commitment to inclusion, diversity and impact across the United States and beyond.

Carla Hendra is the Global CEO of Ogilvy Growth & Innovation, one of Ogilvy’s five global  business units, where she leads a team dedicated to providing advisory services to C-level clients at the intersection of Brand, Growth, Digital and Innovation. Carla founded Ogilvy  Growth & Innovation in 2011 and under her leadership has expanded its offerings to include Growth Strategy, Business Transformation, Sustainability and Behavioral Sciences consulting, in addition to Brand and Marketing Strategy and Innovation. Carla has worked with clients spanning Fortune 500 companies and start-ups to create new companies, new  markets, new brands, new products, new ecosystems, and beyond.

“We are thrilled to welcome Carla to our Board of Directors,” said Chris Young, StartOut’s chair. “Carla is an exceptional leader in the advertising and marketing worlds. We are most fortunate to have her counsel and perspective as we seek to grow and differentiate the  ways we communicate and engage with our whole community. Her appointment marks a multi-year successful collaboration between Ogilvy and StartOut.” 

Carla has an accomplished track record of creating successful marketing and digital strategies for companies and brands worldwide. In her 25 years with Ogilvy, the world’s leading integrated creative marketing and communications network, she has held multiple positions, including: global digital & CRM lead on IBM, North America digital leadership as President of OgilvyOne from 1998-2010, and co-CEO of Ogilvy North America from 2005 to  2010.

Among other important honors, Carla was named one of Advertising Age’s “Woman to  Watch” in 1999 and was jury chair of the 2001 Cyber Lions, the first-ever female jury chair  of the Cannes International Festival of Creativity in its then 50-year history. Carla was later awarded “Advertising Woman of the Year” by AWNY and the YWCA’s “W” award for her  efforts to eliminate racism and empower women in the workplace. Throughout her career, Carla has balanced work with raising three children. In 2005, she was selected as one of  Working Mother magazine’s “Advertising Working Mothers of the Year”.

“After working with StartOut for six years as an innovation partner, it is so exciting to join the StartOut Board of Directors,” said Carla Hendra. “I am impressed by StartOut’s commitment not only to diversity at large but also helping LGBTQ+ entrepreneurs in all industries excel, by providing critical resources like access to capital and mentorship. Throughout my career, and as a part of the Ogilvy network, it has been a goal to help underserved communities not only rise but also have an impact on the world. StartOut’s ongoing vision of economic empowerment and its mission to drive equality and prosperity  for the LGBTQ+ community remains trailblazing.” 

The appointment of Carla Hendra to StartOut’s Board of Directors marks a fruitful 6-year  relationship between Ogilvy and StartOut. Carla has driven collaboration between the two organizations, ranging from event sponsorship and collaboration to marketing counsel for the StartOut Pride Economic Impact Index (SPEII). Ogilvy was critical in helping to introduce the Index, a novel tool to measure and visualize the economic impact of LGBTQ+  leaders and what such impact could have been with equal access to resources. Carla will now serve a critical role on StartOut’s Board helping to accelerate its marketing and promotion as the organization enters its next growth phase. Carla’s unique blend of experiences across marketing, communications, and digital make her an ideal choice to help guide StartOut through this journey.



Founded in 2009, StartOut, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, is the largest  national organization to support LGBTQ+ entrepreneurs with over 21K members  nationwide. StartOut’s mission is to increase the number, diversity, and impact  of LGBTQ+ entrepreneurs and amplify their stories to drive the economic empowerment of the community. StartOut helps aspiring LGBTQ+ entrepreneurs  start new companies; supports current entrepreneurs as they grow and expand their existing businesses; and engages successful entrepreneurs as role models  and mentors, on its online portal and through targeted events nationwide. For  more information, please visit 


Ogilvy has been producing iconic, culture-changing marketing campaigns since the day its  founder David Ogilvy opened up shop in 1948. Today, Ogilvy is an award-winning integrated  creative network known for developing giant ideas that create giant value for Fortune  Global 500 companies as well as local businesses. Ogilvy is a global network with 132  offices in 83 countries and five core businesses that span Growth & Innovation; Advertising, Brand, & Content; Public Relations & Influence; Experience; and Health. Ogilvy is a WPP company (NASDAQ: WPPGY). For more information, visit, and follow Ogilvy on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn.

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