About Rise > Cheryl Berman

Cheryl Berman

Senior Advisor

In her three-decade Leo Burnett career, Cheryl Berman was responsible for the agency’s most successful and famous marketing efforts. As Chairman and Chief Creative Officer of Leo Burnett USA, Berman held Leo’s original job. She was instrumental in bringing in more than half the accounts residing at the agency when she left in 2007, including McDonalds, Disney, Hallmark, Coca-Cola, Kraft Foods, and ConAgra. Under her leadership, Leo Burnett was the most awarded agency for effectiveness ten years in a row.

Berman is a role model for women, and she continues to speak on this topic around the world, receiving acclaim from CNN, The Wall Street Journal, and the Economist. Berman is also the author of award-winning original music for brands like McDonalds, Disney, Hallmark, and Kraft. Several of her songs have even made it to the top of the charts.

A former journalist, Berman joined Leo Burnett as a copywriter and became the first woman appointed to the Board of Directors. She was named Chicago’s Ad Woman of the Year in 1997 and was featured as the determined Ms. Berman in the Wall Street Journals Creative Leaders Series. In 2012, she was among the “100 most influential women in advertising” by Ad Age.

A Chicago native, Berman graduated from the University of Illinois with a Bachelor's Degree in Journalism. She and her husband, Randy, have three children who provide her with the insights and inspiration to keep her on her toes.