Steve Stoute

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Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Translation

Steve Stoute is the Founder and CEO of the innovative and industry-leading marketing firm Translation. Steve founded Translation in 2004, with the belief that Fortune 500 companies were missing an opportunity to create a deeper connection with consumers—a connection rooted in the idea that today’s consumer is more complex than their demographic might suggest.

Geared with that understanding, Steve has become a premier innovator in contemporary brand marketing. For more than a decade, he has worked to identify and activate a new generation of consumers on behalf of iconic brands like State Farm, Jeep, and the National Basketball Association—helping them thrive in the changing cultural climate.

Well known for his ability to create meaningful partnerships between brands and artists, Steve has orchestrated a seemingly endless list of groundbreaking creative and strategic executions, serving as the brains behind classic campaigns like McDonald’s “I’m Lovin’ It” featuring Justin Timberlake, and the instantly iconic Apple “Chapters” campaign starring Mary J. Blige, Taraji P. Henson, and Kerry Washington.

Steve was recognized as one of Fast Company’s Most Creative People in Business in 2014 and named Executive of the Year by Advertising Age in 2013. In 2009, the American Advertising Federation inducted Steve into the Advertising Hall of Achievement.

Much of Translation’s work is based on Steve’s philosophy of a changing cultural landscape, and his belief in a global progression towards a shared mental complexion. His acclaimed book, The Tanning of America, builds on that idea by teaching corporate America how to understand and engage with today’s young adult market. Since its publication in 2011, the book has been made into a four-part VH1 Rock Doc, “The Tanning of America: One Nation Under Hip Hop,” which aired in February 2014, and an audiobook narrated by Kerry Washington, which was released in April 2014.

Steve has been the keynote or featured speaker at many noted conferences including the NBA All-Star Tech Summit, the Sundance Film Festival, South by Southwest (SXSW), Fast Company Innovation Uncensored, and Google Zeitgeist. He also appeared on the main stage at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity with Kanye West and venture capitalist Ben Horowitz in 2014, and with Sean Combs in 2013.

As a thought-leader in culture and marketing, Steve has been invited to share his views on a number of television programs such as The Today Show, Nightline and Morning Joe, as well as in publications such as the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and Business Insider.

Before founding Translation, Steve spent ten years as a senior executive at a series of leading music labels – first as President of Urban Music at Sony and later as Executive Vice President of Interscope Geffen A&M Records. During his time at Interscope, Steve was honored with an American Music Award as producer of the movie soundtrack for Wild Wild West. He would later go on to executive produce the Academy Award–winning 8 Mile soundtrack.

Steve is passionate about philanthropic work and believes in the power of harnessing corporate muscle to effect social change. To that end, he has played a key role in the development of minority recruitment campaigns for both the FDNY and NYPD. In recognition of this work, Steve received the 2004 Humanitarian Award. He also served as the co-chairman of the New York City Fresh Air Fund in 2003, which helps minority children experience life outside of the inner city.

Short Form Bio:

Steve Stoute is the founder and chief executive officer of the innovative and industry-leading marketing firm Translation. For more than a decade, he has worked to identify and activate a new generation of consumers on behalf of iconic brands such as State Farm, Jeep, and the NBA—helping them thrive in the changing cultural climate.

Stoute has orchestrated a seemingly endless list of groundbreaking creative and strategic executions, serving as the brains behind classic campaigns such as McDonald’s “I’m Lovin’ It” featuring Justin Timberlake, and the instantly iconic Apple “Chapters” campaign starring Mary J. Blige, Taraji P. Henson, and Kerry Washington.  He was recognized as one of Fast Company’s “Most Creative People in Business” in 2014 and named “Executive of the Year” by Advertising Age in 2013. In 2009, the American Advertising Federation inducted Stoute into the Advertising Hall of Achievement.

In 2011, Stoute added “author” to his list of accomplishments with the release of his acclaimed book, The Tanning of America, which teaches corporate America how to engage with today’s young adult market. Before founding Translation, Steve spent ten years as a senior executive at a series of leading music labels, including Sony and Interscope Geffen A&M Records.

About Translation:

Founded in 2004, Translation is a full-service communications agency with a reputation for helping Fortune 500 companies thrive in contemporary culture. The agency is dedicated to delivering transformative ideas that push past the limitations of traditional marketing, fundamentally changing the way a brand resonates with consumers in the global marketplace. Led by Founder/CEO Steve Stoute and CCO John Norman, Translation delivers world-class creative for a roster of premier brands including State Farm, the National Basketball Association, Kaiser Permanente, and Jeep.

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