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Schedule subject to change.

Note: Meeting rooms may change. Please refer to the MBA Events mobile app, available in both the App Store and Google Play, on-site for final locations.

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Saturday, October 26, 2019

  • Accelerated Brand Building

    Location: Level 4,
    Ballroom


    Speaker(s)

    Dia Simms, Executive, Entrepreneur, Philanthropist and Chief Executive Officer, BRN

    Susan Stewart, 2019 MBA Vice Chairman

    Join us to hear Dia Simms tell her inspiring story. Through her relentless commitment to excellence, she worked her way up to President of Combs Enterprises after rap mogul Sean "Diddy" Combs initially recruited her to be his assistant in 2005. Learn how she defined her own personal brand, and that of her company, through her many successful roles on her journey up the corporate ladder.

    Speaker(s)

    Dia Simms, Executive, Entrepreneur, Philanthropist and Chief Executive Officer, BRN

    Dia Simms started her career working for the Department of Defense. Seeking a more entrepreneurial path, she then ran a marketing company called Madison Marketing that focused on on-premise and off-premise spirits promotions in the Maryland/DC corridor. After moving back to New York, Dia excelled in sales both in the advertising and pharma industries. She began working for Sean ‘Diddy’ Combs as his executive assistant in 2005 and grew within the company while building multiple brands and businesses under the Combs Enterprises umbrella. Credited for turning Bad Boy Records into Combs Enterprises, Dia achieved success overseeing the portfolio of brands under the Combs empire which include spirits, fashion, fragrance, content and the Capital Prep schools. Of note, Dia led the transformation of the CÎROC ultra-premium vodka from being unprofitable to a $2 billion retail value brand. Dia was named President of Combs Enterprises in 2017, making her the first president in the company’s history. Responsible for overseeing over a billion dollars of brand value, she brings her relentless commitment to excellence and her unparalleled track record as a strategist, value-creator and brand-builder to the leadership team of Combs Enterprises. Dia was listed as “One of the most powerful executives in the industry” by Billboard in both 2017 and 2018 as well as the Ebony Power 100 list. In April of 2018 she was an honoree of the Matrix Awards from NYWIC, as well as named to the 2018 Ad Age Women to Watch list and Variety’s Power of Women New York Impact List. Dia serves on the board for Capital Prep and THREAD Organization that provides underprivileged high-school students resources to help foster their academic advancement and personal growth. She often speaks on the importance of diverse leadership and building brand value at an accelerated pace.

    Susan Stewart, 2019 MBA Vice Chairman

    Susan Stewart is the 2019 MBA Vice Chairman of the Mortgage Bankers Association and Chief Executive Officer of SWBC Mortgage, a full-service mortgage banking firm headquartered in San Antonio, Texas. She currently serves as a member of MBA’s Board of Directors and is the immediate past Vice-Chair of the MBA’s Residential Board of Governors (RESBOG). Stewart serves on the board of the MBA Opens Doors Foundation (ODF) and both Stewart and SWBC Mortgage have been recognized as Guardian level donors of the organization. She currently serves on MBA’s Consumer Affairs Advisory Council and has previously served on MBA’s Loan Production and Fraud Prevention Committees.

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