Seton Hall, Meet Our Leaders

Meet Our Leaders: John Hayes 

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John HayesIt's such a wonderful gift to have gone to Seton Hall. The University opened up the world to me; it truly changed my life. I wouldn't be doing what I'm doing today and I wouldn't have the happiness that I have without Seton Hall. I think a Seton Hall student can bring so many things to a company such as the one I work for, American Express. Seton Hall students have great talent and possess an integrity and depth of values that would benefit any company.

John Hayes
Communication major
Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer
American Express

Meet John

A proud graduate of Seton Hall University, John spent his time at Seton Hall studying communication and enhancing his creative side by taking advantage of Seton Hall's vast liberal arts curriculum and interdisciplinary approach. He explored art, music and literature. Seton Hall also impressed upon John the importance of values and integrity and instilled in him a commitment to give back and help others.

Developing servant leaders is central to the mission of Seton Hall University. We want to ensure our students are not only successful leaders in their career but also committed to making a difference in the world and serving their communities. John Hayes is a shining example of Servant Leadership.

Professionally John has become a leader in his career as the Chief Marketing Officer for American Express which does business in over 120 countries. For the past 17 years, John has overseen American Express's marketing efforts worldwide, shaping both the company and its brand. He oversees marketing strategies, product development, global advertising, digital marketing, market research, corporate sponsorships, brand management and publishing. He has been the force behind the business strategies that have resulted in iconic advertising campaigns.

True to the values instilled in him by his Seton Hall education, John has also become a leader in his service to the community and this fits perfectly with the core values at American Express. Under John's leadership, American Express has often been credited as having launched the first cause-related marketing campaign in history and has since led the charge for a corporate commitment to  serving the community with campaigns such as "Charge Against Hunger," which provides food for the poor in America, and "Save The Music," which supports music programs in underprivileged schools across the country. His most recent campaign, "Members Project," empowers the community of members to make a difference in the world. In 2001, John brought American Express in as the founding sponsor of the Tribeca Film Festival, which was created to revitalize and bring business and energy back to lower Manhattan after the events of September 11. In 2006, he was one of the creators of the (RED) campaign, a revolutionary marketing effort to address the AIDS emergency in Africa.

His commitment to servant leadership has not only inspired him to use his position at American Express to make a difference in the world but he also dedicates much of his personal time and resources to helping others and giving back. He supports many charities most notably he sits on the council for Save the Children - Newborn and Child Survival campaign. He also supports "The Well" at Charity Water, where he has personally taken trips to Africa to build and fund wells that provide clean water for local communities. John also sits on the board of Seton Hall University and Yahoo.

John is recognized as a thought leader and market-mover in a constantly changing marketplace. He has been recognized for his contribution to business and the community on numerous occasions, most recently receiving the "2010 Corporate Marketing Executive of the Year" by the Delaney Report, "2009 Global Leadership Award" from the UJA of NY and honored with the "2007 Distinguished Citizenship Award" from the John A. Reisenbach Foundation. His work also received an Emmy Award in 2007 from the Academy of Television, Arts and Sciences.


  • 2010 Corporate Marketing Executive of the Year by the Delaney Report
  • 2009 Global Leadership Award" from the UJA of NY
  • 2007 Distinguished Citizenship Award" from the John A. Reisenbach Foundation
  • Emmy Award in 2007 from the Academy of Television, Arts and Sciences

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