Jon Cook, president and CEO, VML


When Jon Cook began his career with VML as an account executive in 1996, the Internet was just beginning to take off.

Few marketing firms recognized the potential for digital marketing, but Cook, knowing that in the marketing industry a firm needs to continually push the envelope, urged the company to head in the digital direction.

His foresight turned VML into the market leader it is today, and subsequently, Cook has held nearly every possible role at VML. In January 2007, Cook was promoted to president, and in February 2011, he became the company’s CEO.

Cook’s commitment to originality and creativity continues in that role as he encourages his employees to challenge the status quo and devise new ways of doing things. From this thinking, he created the concept of “Most Important Partner.” Cook wants all his clients to see the company not only as a marketing firm but also as a partner ready to do anything needed to grow their business. This concept has positioned VML as one of the most respected and highly rated digital interactive marketing firms in the world.

Cook has also been committed to giving back to the community. The VML Foundation is an employee-led organization that spearheads community outreach and charitable contributions. It works nationwide to give back to the communities VML operates within. Nearly 75 percent of the company’s employees make contributions to the foundation; VML matches a portion.

In the coming years, Cook plans to continue developing VML into a global digital powerhouse. He has implemented a series of alignment teams to handle substantial client work while maintaining the responsiveness of a small, nimble agency. This structure has allowed VML to sustain and expand its capabilities, enabling the company to scale operations to support annual double-digit revenue growth.

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