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Summary Profile

Yvonne’s career has been focused on advertising and marketing with early forays into fashion design and acting. She has had a long and successful career in the marketing arena, with her last 7 years as the Chief Executive of the International Marketing Council, a body established by the President to create and market Brand South Africa. The intention was to increase Tourism, Trade and Investment, to improve international relations and to integrate business and Government activities to create a cohesive message emanating from all stakeholders in South Africa. She and her team developed the well known and beautiful Television work promoting a South Africa “Alive With Possibility”. Pivotal to the success of the work of the IMC was the realization that positioning the nation brand can ultimately affect social issues, job creation and unemployment. During her time at the helm of the organization which she started, she interacted with a Board of 40, leading lights in Business and Government, she built an organization from one office, and four people, to two Domestic offices, three international offices and 40 people. Brand South Africa has received many accolades particularly for the level of communication and world class advertising that appears on local and international TV channels. Brand South Africa was responsible for the official web portal for the country – In 2005, Yvonne was nominated as a finalist in the BWA Business Woman of the Year award. She is widely respected as a leading communication strategist and is a much sought after public speaker both at home and abroad. She speaks on Branding, the mood of the nation, the current economics and politics and the role of women in business. She was a key motivator in the creation of a conference called “ A Safe South Africa” – for the first time looking at all of the root causes of crime in South Africa. Previously she worked for 20 years in many of the leading Advertising agencies as Media Director. For 5 years she was the Group Media Director of Ogilvy and Mather. She is currently running her own business – a marketing consultancy whose clients include Financial Mail, GIBS Business School, The Women’s World Cup of Golf and Cape Town Tourism She sits on the Boards of SA Tourism, and Valued Citizens.


Brand You Endings are Beginnings – her personal story Courage Leadership You too can be a great presenter

Rave Reviews

Thank you for a great presentation yesterday. I am sure you have done it 100 times yet you delivered your speech with such energy and enthusiasm that the entire audience was wowed. I was asked to bring you down once a month for a pep talk because then we could conquer the world. Su Birch : Wines Of SA Congratulations on a very successful IMC presentation to the President. You were superb and I give you an Oscar for an excellent presentation. Pam Golding On behalf of the GIBS Leading Women class of 2011, I would like to extend my sincere appreciation and gratitude for the excellent session you hosted for our delegates. Hearing your leadership journey was incredibly powerful, especially in terms of the particular decisions and choices you have made along the way. It is so valuable to see how strongly you hold to your values and this creates such authenticity and integrity in your leadership. The following are some of the comments that were written by delegates in the evaluations: · She helped me to realize that failure is not always bad but an opportunity to take stock of your life · She was brilliant and really epitomized authenticity · She just proved so many theories wrong · She gave practical learning points that every leader should know · I love the understanding of self and the brilliant advice given · Vibrant, inspirational, authentic As you can see, Yvonne, the time you spent sharing your leadership journey with us was invaluable and proved catalytic to many women. Thank you so much for being a part of our programme. We wish you well in your decisions ahead and look forward to following your journey further. Leigh Turner - Leading Women Programme Manager

Yvonne Johnston


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