Emily K. Graham ’07

As a barrier-breaking executive amplifying diverse voices, Emily K. Graham ’07 exemplifies the “think big and do good” ethos.

Graham grew up in Cedar Hill, Texas, and describes her parents as the “biggest champions” of dreams and ambitions that flourished at SMU. She dived into campus life as a resident assistant, Student Senator, AARO and Mustang Corral leader and president of Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority, among other activities. Winner of the prestigious “M” Award, Graham earned a B.A. in corporate communication and public affairs from Meadows School of the Arts. She was thrilled to return for Commencement 14 years later to address Meadows’ 2021 graduates.

Today, as the chief equity and impact officer at Omnicom, one of the world’s largest media, advertising and marketing conglomerates, Graham advances a systemic equity vision across a global network of more than 1,500 creative agencies and 5,000 clients. She also serves as Omnicom’s global head of diversity and inclusion communications, acting as senior counselor to AT&T, General Motors and Microsoft and other major clients.

Previously, Graham was the first chief diversity and inclusion officer at FleishmanHillard, and she held roles at MWWPR and Burson-Marsteller. She’s also the founder of True MOSAIC, a global diversity, equity and inclusion consultancy.

Her career journey has been profiled in the likes of LinkedIn, Forbes and Essence. She was named the Top Diversity Officer in the U.S. by the National Diversity Council, and has been recognized as a rising star by leading industry publications, including PRWeek’s 40 under 40 and Crain’s New York Business.

Now based on the East Coast, Graham stays connected to SMU as a member of the Meadows Executive Board. She also serves on the boards of the Institute of Public Relations, Cannes Can Diversity Collective, American Advertising Federation and Syracuse University’s Newhouse School of Communications.

A passion for service that began in high school as a volunteer working with the elderly continues today as lead Sunday school teacher at her church. She is also active in her sorority and The Links, renowned organizations for Black women committed to service, philanthropy and activism.