Defy Communications > Team > Joanne Krell

I’ve gotten a lot of life lessons from work throughout these many years, but surely, chief among them is that being smart is only one part of the equation. So when my partner and I decided to open our own business, we put right up front, hard work, kindness, decency and humor as things we prioritized. Because if there’s one thing we know for sure, the world is struggling to experience many of those qualities these days.

I’ve had more than a couple decades of experience working with all kinds of people on all kinds of projects – and that includes my time selling expensive clothes in ski shops and taking care of toddlers on Saturday nights. But the greatest bulk of my career – and the work I am proudest of – has been helping to solve seemingly intractable challenges, both in the social and corporate sectors.

As vice president of communications for the independent W.K. Kellogg Foundation, I worked with the foundation’s leadership and grantees on everything from organizational communications to strategies focused on changing the trajectory for vulnerable children. For nearly 14 years, during two different time periods, I worked on addressing the image and reputation of General Motors through some of their most challenging and opportunistic periods, most recently leading corporate communications.

People have called me smart and brave, but really what I am is focused on strategies that help the greater good. And I am eager to do that for you.

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