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Morris Martin: Executive Leader, Mentor and Caddie-To-Be

Morris Martin: Executive Leader, Mentor and Caddie-To-Be

Standing at 6’ 6’’ with a bright smile, Morris Martin has a powerful presence and easily commands the room as the Chief Intelligence Officer for Publicis Groupe at Formerly Known As (FKA). But he wasn’t given that power right off the bat. As one of the few Black male leaders in the advertising industry, he had to fight for every piece of the pie he’s earned. Today, inspired by history, impactful mentors and his 6-year-old son, Dallas, Morris strives to share his knowledge and experience to empower the next generation of Black leaders and change the way we expect executive offices to look.

Tell us more about the start of your career.

As in many corporate environments, I was often the only Black male in the room. This left me feeling like I had to work twice as hard to prove myself. I never gave up. I knew I had something to offer and was determined to succeed. It is important to me to show that people of color can succeed in advertising. It became my mission to show that we can break through the glass ceiling.

Can you recall a time when you faced a significant challenge and overcame it?

When I became executive vice president, imposter syndrome hit hard. On the first day, I arrived at the office early, contemplating whether to go in. Being one of the few Black leaders in my industry, I felt immense pressure. But it wasn’t just about me; it was about mentoring others and breaking barriers for people of color. Embracing that challenge strengthened my faith in my abilities, support network, and myself.

What would you say makes a person “interesting?”

I take an active interest in listening to other people and learning about their stories. Most people have a thought-provoking personal story. Whether it is a colleague at work, a fellow golfer out on the course or a stranger I’m chatting with over a beer at a sports bar, there is always something valuable about investing in connection.

Outside of work, what do you love to do?

I love going to the gym, and you can find me there at 5am most days. I am also an avid golfer. I’ve loved sharing golf with my 6-year-old son. He is projected to be bigger and taller than me, and I hope to caddie for him in the future. He’s been playing golf since he was three, so not only am I proud of the opportunity to get him out on the course—an opportunity I never had growing up—I am also preparing myself for the day he can beat me in a round.

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