BECA's mission is important to me because I'm a firm believer that to whom much is given, much is required. Being part of BECA allows me to use my talents, showcase my experiences, and help attract, guide, and mentor the next generation of Black marketing leaders. In essence, it provides the perfect platform through which I can give back and pay it forward at the same time.

Will Smith

Founding Member
Former SVP & CMO, PetSmart

Will Smith is currently Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer at PetSmart, the $7.8B, industry-leading pet specialty retailer, operating 1,650 stores throughout the U.S., Puerto Rico, and Canada.

In this role, he leads a team of 154 and is responsible for managing all domestic and international marketing functions: brand strategy, positioning, and creative development; loyalty and CRM; visual merchandising; ecommerce; insights, advanced analytics, and marketing research; public relations; and corporate communications; as well as the integration and growth planning for PetSmart Charities into connected company outreach.

Prior to PetSmart, Will held the role of Chief Marketing Officer at Abercrombie & Fitch. In addition to marketing leadership responsibilities on the parent brand, Abercrombie, he also led the strategic development and evolution of Abercrombie Kids and Hollister, the company’s other international trademarks.

From 2008-2017, Will served in a similar capacity in senior marketing roles at Caleres Inc., formerly known as Brown Shoe Company.

He joined Brown Shoe’s Famous Footwear division in 2008 as SVP, Marketing. During his tenure there he drove the repositioning of Famous, upgraded in-store communications and design, led the brand’s foray into digital and social media, accelerated ecommerce sales and traffic gains, and contemporized all customer contact strategies and tactics, including the revitalization of a customer loyalty program that now delivers nearly three-quarters of the organization’s total annual revenue. He was elevated to the position of Chief Marketing Officer for Famous Footwear/Brown Group Retail in 2013

Furthermore, he played a critical role in the parent company’s corporate rebranding initiative that resulted in its name change to Caleres, which modernized its identity and improved customer sentiment for the 137-year-old company.

Earlier in his career, Will garnered extensive additional retail, wholesale, P&L leadership, and brand building experience. He worked in senior brand management positions for iconic packaged goods companies such as Kraft Foods and Philip Morris USA, in entertainment as VP of Marketing for Urban Music at Atlantic Records and GM for Blackground Records/Virgin Records, N.A., and in fashion apparel as Group Vice President of Marketing for Kate Spade/Liz Claiborne Retail.

He is a true marketing talent who has led successful, transformative brand campaigns via impactful go-to-market planning, advertising, digital marketing, mobile outreach, and customer loyalty programs. He is a tremendous asset for all companies who desire focus on strengthening the connection with customers and enhancing the power and clarity of their brands and their unique points of difference in the marketplace.

Will holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from Cornell University and a Masters of Business Administration from Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business. Additionally, he has served on the National Board of Trustees for the March of Dimes from 2013-2017 and on the Board of Directors for the Better Business Bureau of Eastern Missouri and Southern Illinois from 2009-2017.

He and his wife Nancy currently live in Cave Creek, Arizona and have two children, Lauren and Jordan.

In the Press

Will Smith

How Marketing Expert will Smith Keeps The PetSmart Brand Soaring


Will Smith

AdAge: How PetSmart Used Pet Influencers To Help Create Its Holiday Campaign