Ad exec joins faculty
Guy Mastrion, an entrepreneur with more than 30 years’ experience in brand development, digital strategy, advertising, design, photography and film, will be Skidmore’s ninth Harder Professor of Business Administration.
Skidmore’s business faculty has called Mastrion “an interdisciplinary thinker and doer” and “a creative powerhouse.” Department chair Caroline D’Abate ’93 says, “Guy sees connections between business, psychology, the arts, sciences, history, and so much more, and he brings these connections to life for his clients.”Mastrion is founder and chief creative officer of Brandforming, whose clients include health and wellness, financial services, entertainment, food and beverage, transportation and fashion brands. He is also a founding member of Watershed Bridges, a network of firms working to change health-care communications.
Mastrion notes, “Creativity in business is widely recognized as an asset but also widely misunderstood. It deserves more air time, and there are many fundamental skills to be learned that will help Skidmore students no matter their career paths.” A philanthropist of wide interests, he does pro-bono work for many organizations and hopes that his students might share in such work “and put their creativity to the test.”
Before his launch of Brandforming, Mastrion was a co-founder and chief global creative officer of Palio-Ignite, which began in Saratoga Springs and became a top health-care advertising agency that helped grow inVentiv Health into the largest health-care marketing and communications holding company in the world. He has also helped lead Saatchi & Saatchi, Bates Worldwide, and other ad agencies. The work he and his teams have created has garnered hundreds of honors such as Clio awards, Cannes prizes, London International Awards and the Global Award. Mastrion holds a BFA in communications design and photography from Parsons School of Design.
The previous holder of the Harder Chair was Cathy Hill, whom D’Abate calls “a lawyer by trade and an intellectual entrepreneur at heart.” Hill brought extensive experience in carbon mitigation, energy storage, and government-education-industry partnerships. She organized three TEDxSkidmore talks, Accelerate 518 for Capital District businesses, and NYExcel to educate executives in clean-tech businesses. Hill will remain on the Skidmore faculty, where her always-popular courses have included “Entrepreneurship,” “Living in a Sustainable World” and “The Big Idea.”
Mastrion will officially assume the Harder Chair in mid-August.
Established in 1984, the F. William Harder Chair in Business Administration is designed for a distinguished executive at the senior level who will teach a variety of courses, help develop the business program and its interactions with the liberal arts program, and enhance Skidmore’s contacts with business leaders locally and nationally.