MEET THE FOUNDER
FOUNDER / CHIEF CREATIVE OFFICER
There are five types of thinkers: creative thinkers, analytical thinkers, intuitive thinkers, logical thinkers, and visionary thinkers. Keni is a pioneer of change and is committed to expanding diversity efforts, and the impact he has made on future leaders does not go unnoticed. A true exemplar of leadership, Keni an award-winning influencer and diversity advocate devoted to outreach programs and mentorship. On February 8th, 2017, he launched the Young Commodores program at J. Walter Thompson now Wunderman Thompson, a diversity initiative that provides college and high school advertising students with an opportunity to apply what they are learning in the classroom to real-life advertising and business. In 2017, he was named as one of the 4A's 100 People That Make Adverting Great, and this year has been featured as one of NV Magazines Champions of Inclusion. The Marcus Graham Project awarded him with the Bill Sharp Award for the Future of Advertising in December of 2020.
WHAT’S WITH THE NAME?
Inspired by the poem “The Rose that Grew from Concrete” by the late great Tupac Shakur, in comparison to much-needed resources, people of color and women need to thrive professionally but are overlooked, unlike their counterparts. Despite the disparity of resources and equity on all levels for over half a century, people of color and women have been trailblazers, game changers, and tastemakers for an industry that is still learning how to deal with their sheer dopeness. Giants like Bill Sharp, Sheldon Levy, Jimmy Smith, Keith Cartwright, Carol H. Williams, Shannon Washington, and many others have been delivering cultural-changing and award-winning campaigns for decades. However, with all that success, people of color and women are still underrepresented on advertising levels. Since its inception, 100 Roses has risen to the challenge of COVID-19, racial unrest in America, and shown the world its light in a time of darkness, just like the rose that grew from concrete.
MISSION & PURPOSE
The goal of the 100 Roses is to be a platform where people of color in the advertising industry can connect, collaborate, and grow together. Too often, people of color in the advertising industry feel like the elephant in the room. So rarely do you see men or women of color in the C-Suite, and those are considered an anomaly. This platform will be a place for people of color to find strength and community in a space where they are encouraged and inspired by veterans and their peers.
The network's purpose is to be a central location
for those the least represented in the advertising, marketing media, and public relations to connect with others in the industry. There are many groups for advertising professionals of color, but none like the Roses. We can learn a lot about each other since all of our journeys are different yet somewhat the same. Having one central hub to network and receive updates on our success and get a little advice from around the world makes it an inspirational and aspirational place for ad folks to be a part of something bigger than advertising itself.