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Even before Kenny Mitchell became Snap Inc.’s first-ever chief marketing officer, he had a deep understanding of the platform and the value it delivers. In this fun and unfiltered conversation, Kenny shares how Snapchat is leveraging AR to enhance community engagement; the unique way brands are using the platform to tell their stories; lessons learned from his dynamic career at powerhouses such as McDonald’s, Gatorade, NASCAR; and more.
Heather: When a little-known app called Snapchat introduced messages that could disappear, that app quickly caught on and forever changed the social media game. Over a decade later, the company—now called Snap, Inc.—boasts over 363 million daily active users and growing and has evolved well beyond a messaging app, cementing itself as a pioneer in augmented reality. With a recurring spot on Fast Company‘s Most Innovative Company list and a slew of partnerships with brands from the NFL to Amazon, Snap is bringing AR to the masses and helping other brands along the way.
Today, I am very excited to be speaking with Kenny Mitchell, Snap’s first-ever chief marketing officer. Throughout his storied career, Kenny has had a hand in building iconic brands such as McDonald’s, Gatorade, and NASCAR, leading to numerous awards and recognitions. I’m excited to get into a lot of topics, ranging from the future of AR, the lessons learned throughout his career, and the power of meaningful storytelling. With that, welcome Kenny.
Kenny: Thank you so much for having me, Heather. I like that introduction.
Heather: Well you made it happen, not me. I’m just reading the facts here. But I have to start with, does your daughter think it’s the coolest thing that her dad works for Snap?
Kenny: You know, she does think that it’s pretty cool. Her friends are huge Snapchat users. I think it frustrates her a little bit that I kind of understand technology and social media and all—like trends and influencers and things like that. So, it’s a good badge of honor for her to have a dad that works at Snapchat; and she particularly loves wearing our swag.
Heather: Oh, well, swag is the best. I have two sons. Jack is 14, almost 15, and Sam is 11, and Snap is the only thing that they use from a social media perspective. It’s just how everybody communicates. I’ve asked them, ‘So, you just get these snaps and what do you do?’…kind of odd pictures that are half of people’s faces. It’s very interesting to see the world through their eyes, but it is absolutely something that has a ton of engagement in this house, at least.
Kenny: That’s wonderful to hear. We just celebrated my daughter’s 16th birthday, and the number of snaps being created for her little birthday party was something to behold.
Heather: Amazing. So, as I said, you are the brand’s first-ever CMO. You’ve had a really incredible career with storied brands. What intrigued you about the role, and how has it evolved since you took the helm?
Kenny: My first time running into Snapchat was as a marketer, as an advertiser, when I was working on the Gatorade business and Gatorade’s consumer target; they call them competitive athletes. And from a demo perspective, they tend to be 13 to 24. As Snapchat began emerging, and let’s call that 2012, 2013, as a kind of consumer-centric brand, it was not uncommon for our teams to be doing immersions or going to camps or academies or tournaments. And we just saw Snapchat everywhere. Our consumers were telling us about it as something that they were considering essential.
We owed it to ourselves, as stewards of the brand, to understand that behavior: what they liked and didn’t like. I’ve been on Snapchat myself since 2013. I became a user and just really tried to understand the platform. We were hearing at that time from a lot of what we called influencers on the Gatorade business—which were athletic trainers, nutritionists, dieticians, people that were close to the athlete coaches, strength coaches—and helped them understand what to do with their body physiologically as well as nutrition. They were asking us: What’s up with this? The snap thing? Why are people using it so much? So, we took it upon ourselves to get really well educated on the platform. We learned a ton about it and really understood the core insight behind why the platform was even created—the whole idea, you know
Our co-founders, Bobby [Murphy] and Evan [Spiegel], were tremendously prescient in realizing that, with the proliferation of mobile devices, you now have the ability to communicate using pictures and videos and that that would be so much more meaningful. People say a picture’s worth a thousand words, right? They’d be so much more meaningful and useful than text over time. It literally was that insight, combined with what they were seeing—from a social media perspective—that people put things online and they kind of exist out there forever. You almost don’t get a chance to evolve and grow and change. So they thought of ephemeral messaging, the idea of photos and videos that disappear.
So, those became the two core insights that led to Snapchat. Their hypothesis was true, given that we have over 360 million people that use Snapchat every single day around the world. By the time we got to 2015, Snapchat began offering advertisements. I and my team at Gatorade were probably one of the first 10-15 advertisers on the platform. We did some really, really cool and interesting things. And my push to my team was that between augmented reality and video, basically the sky’s the limit. In terms of what you can do creatively on that platform, it is limited by your level of creativity and your idea. So, we really made some fantastic programs and campaigns and whatnot, and I got to know the platform pretty intimately. I thought that this was something that had a good stranglehold on a generation, that had a tremendous amount of creativity, that was built almost with privacy in mind from the beginning and really caught onto this insight around photos and videos being the way that people will communicate and share. I thought, oh, there’s something to this.
So, fast-forward several years. I’m at McDonald’s, and they were looking for their first CMO. It was at a time, frankly, when Snap had gone through a redesign and was really kind of getting its mojo back. It hadn’t quite gotten it back and was attempting to recover from the redesign. They were looking to rebuild their executive team and ultimately reached out to me.
I had some conversations with Evan, our CEO here. My boss, the co-founder, really thought my passion and interest for Snapchat had not waned, and it felt like a good opportunity to leverage marketing and storytelling to help inform the perception of the brand, to help to showcase what’s special about the platform both to consumers and to advertisers. And I took the plunge.
Heather: So, when you need to get your mojo back, you call Kenny. I think should be your tagline! Thinking back to that conversation with Evan, was there a particular thing that he mentioned or talked about that sealed the deal for you?
Kenny: In the conversation with Evan—and, by the way, there were a series of conversations, actually a pretty lengthy interview process, both with him and with other team members—one of the things that was most impressive to me was actually the values of Snap and how he embodied those. Snap’s values are around being kind and creative and smart. So, you have team members here who are really passionate about our community and delivering value and doing it in a way with a pretty low ego across the board. That, to me, was really inspiring and really exciting. And having a chance to meet many of my peers and colleagues across the company, I saw a really consistent theme from each of them, that they embodied those values in pretty remarkable ways. Not only were they really, really talented and sharp, strategic operators, but they also were the type of people I could see myself working with, side by side. That probably was the linchpin of whether this seemed like an opportunity that was good for me. Could, I could go to battle with these people? And I really embraced and loved those values. They really resonated with me.
Heather: So, you came into this role really as kind of an expert at the platform already. You’ve mentioned Gatorade and McDonald’s, and I talked about NASCAR. What do you think is the biggest difference about being at the helm of a digital-first brand versus others?
Kenny: I often tell people that different companies, categories, and industries have a different center of gravity in terms of their respective businesses. At PepsiCo, it is a CPG [consumer packaged goods] business, a consumer-focused organization and a marketing-led company. So, the center of gravity is marketing. You’ll often see that the CEO and the division presidents and the brand presidents, etc. all came up through the marketing ranks. When you’re building out the business strategy, the business plan, it’s often done by the marketing team as the leader, kind of the hub of the wheel, that brings all the cross-functional team members together. The marketing team is really driving the strategy, the innovation, the pricing, how you’re thinking about distribution, how you’re thinking about going to market, etc. They’re marketing-driven businesses on the CPG side, and PepsiCo kind of embodied that.
McDonald’s was an operations-led company, which it needs to be. There are 14,000 restaurants across the United States, and you want to make sure that you’re getting products there safely, consistently, and on time. So, if I wanted to do a promotion for the Quarter Pounder, I had to make sure that we actually had enough Quarter Pounders in store to deliver against that promotion. If I wanted to do a promotion with Happy Meal, I had to make sure that the toy didn’t create a circumstance where it would slow down the drive-through because it was hard to pack the Happy Meal box. So, in order to bring programs to market, you actually needed strong alignment and consent and support from the operations organization. And that’s the center of gravity there at McDonald’s.
Here at Snap, you know, it was founded by a product designer, Evan, and a product engineer, Bobby. It is a product-led company. So, the product is at the heart of so much that we do. [Our two co-founders] are the ones that are building out the product roadmap. And the product strategy and the product vision and marketing, in this case, is more of a collaborative and strategic support function compared to PepsiCo or McDonald’s, where that’s kind of driving the car.
So, it’s important for any marketer or any new person coming into a business to try to understand what that center of gravity is and to figure out the ways that, from your vantage point and from your role, you can support the business.
Heather: And have influence and make great things happen, right? On that note, what are you just incredibly proud of in terms of something that you’ve brought to market or a campaign or something with regards to your team since you’ve been at the company?
Kenny: There are a few things that I’m particularly proud of during my time here at Snap. First, I’d say that I came on board and needed to stand up a marketing practice in a company where it didn’t exist in a material way—so, being able to get a lay of the land, understand that center of gravity as I talked about, and then kind of determine the core capabilities that we needed to build that would best support the company from a marketing perspective and then build that team and those capabilities out. And I’m proud to say that we have a pretty stout marketing team here, not just in the United States but across the globe, that’s helping to deliver some value. I’m so very, very proud of that, and the team is delivering.
I’d say that the other thing is that there obviously have been several programs and campaigns that I’ve been excited about. When I first came on board, we launched our campaign designed to highlight our use case, which is around communicating with your close friends—which is a differentiator relative to other platforms, where you may have a large follower count or a broad base of folks that you’re connected to. Snapchat is really about connecting and communicating with your close friends. So, we launched a campaign called Real Friends, where we really highlighted those friendships in the way that Snapchat helps to empower them.
We did it globally. We kind of poked a bit of fun at the idea that some platforms may not be for real friends and Snapchat is for real friends. So, we did this idea where we took people that do quotes—you know, oftentimes you’ll see on social media people that have inspiring quotes—and we took quotes around friendship from a variety of well-known people, anyone from Gandhi to Marilyn Monroe to Drake to Jim Morrison. We kind of teased our campaign by showcasing these quotes across bright yellow with the Snap logo. We connected with these quote influencers, so to speak and, on International Friendship day, kind of took over everything related to friends.
If you did a search of friends on Instagram, in particular, or on Twitter, you would find all of these friendship quotes from Snap. So, we’ve actually found a way to leverage those platforms to kind of help launch our campaign and do it in a way that was kind of subversive—and also didn’t even pay those platforms. We actually took over, in a way, that is kind of aligned with a very creative approach to help tell our story. I was very excited about that campaign overall. It performed well for us and really helped begin to dimensionalize what Snap is about. There are a few others; but that one, in particular, I thought was really fun.
Heather: I love that campaign, because there’s something so simple about it—the way in which it kind of came to life and, as you said, actually leveraged other platforms—but it works, because it’s built on a core insight around why people are using it; and you continue to increase users globally. What do you think is really about the experience that keeps having people come back to it and is bringing on new people every day?
Kenny: You’re absolutely right. We’ve been fortunate to really be growing our community in a broad-based way. When I got started three and a half years ago, we were at about 180 million or so daily active users; now, we’re kind of double that. So, we’ve had some really steady growth from that perspective; and I think it all boils down to a pretty differentiated and meaningful use case. The idea that we love to communicate—we do, as humans—and Snapchat is, in a lot of ways, trying to embody some of the behaviors that happen naturally in communication.
Outside of podcasts, where you’re being recorded, most conversations are ephemeral—you have them, and then they’re gone. That is how it happens on the platform. Most conversations are in private. They’re not sitting on some feed or on some wall to be litigated back and forth by friends and people you don’t know. That’s the type of experience that you have on Snapchat. And because of that, we found that our community is very happy. It is the platform that is kind of known as the happiest platform, based on some research that we’ve done, because people feel safe. They feel comfortable, they’re connecting with their real friends. And they’re doing it often in a very creative way, particularly leveraging AR. So, if it’s a platform that makes you happy and it’s a place where your friends are, it’s no surprise that that is something that delivers value to our community and has helped to contribute to our growth.
Heather: You’ve hired a new chief creative officer, who also has a wonderful historic background and clearly was drawn to, I’m sure, the values that drew you to the organization. She has said that Snap is the best-known, least-understood social media platform; yet, as you dimensionalize it here, to me, it’s kind of clear again what the use case is and why people love it. What do you think she meant by that, and how are you two going to be collaborating moving forward?
Kenny: Our new chief creative officer is Colleen DeCourcy. She’s come to us after retiring from advertising, where she was essentially a legend in the advertising space. She was most recently the president and chief creative officer at Wieden+Kennedy, one of the more storied ad agencies in the world. I’m a former athlete, and I love sports. It’s kind of like LeBron has joined your team, like you’ve gotten someone that is so amazing and so talented. We’re incredibly fortunate to have her.
To your question, Heather, I think she really appreciated the values. She had a similar experience, you know, meeting myself and meeting Evan and meeting some of our other colleagues and really loved the way the values live out across the team, as well as across the platform itself. So, when you look at some of the decisions that were made very early on by Evan and Bobby—whether it be curated content, which makes it so that it’s impossible actually for folks to spew misinformation or hurtful content to the totality of the Snapchat community—that doesn’t exist because of the way that the platform was built. The fact that it’s incredibly creative, the fact that it was kind of inspired by human communication and human interactions….
Colleen is someone that loves technology. She, at one point, had started her own agency focused on technology. She’s done a ton of work with other digital platforms, and she really thought and believes that there’s something special about Snapchat. I think that’s one of the things that really attracted her. And her quote about Snap being one of the most famous but most misunderstood platforms is kind of a marketer’s brief. It’s like, how do we drive relevance and understanding of a platform that is known but, unless you are a frequent Snapchatter, you don’t really understand it. It may not be relevant to you; that’s part of the job and the challenge.
She’s a phenomenal creative person and marketer herself and loves taking on such an audacious challenge. She’s my creative partner. In most of my career and on some of the best work that I’ve done, I’ve had a creative partner in some way, shape or form—oftentimes they were at an agency that I did phenomenal work with—and I have the pleasure of actually having our creative partner that sits side by side with me here at Snap. And it’s been a whole lot of fun.
Heather: Fantastic. I’m excited to sit on the sidelines and watch what you two come up with in the coming months and years. Let’s talk about augmented reality. Snap has been at the forefront of innovation in this space, and I continue to read about new features, new partnerships. What do you think is so appealing about augmented reality to brands? How do you see it as really part of the path forward for Snap?
Kenny: Augmented reality is something that Snap has been invested in for close to a decade. This is not something that we are new to. It has been a core and essential element of the Snapchat experience for years. And taking a big step back, Heather, we believe that augmented reality kind of represents the future of computing. You can see a world, Heather, where your camera becomes your cursor. And you’re seeing different elements of this happening all around you. Think about during the pandemic, when you went to your camera to scan a QR code so that you could see a menu or see different information that happens in the world. Now, if you open up Snapchat, that experience is almost happening in hyper drive; you can overlay experiences in the world using augmented reality. You can learn information about things and objects that you see within the camera.
One of my favorite things to do is, actually, when I hear a song being played—our camera is embedded with Shazam, so I can actually track the song and then apply it later to a Snap later that I’m interested in. I can scan items to purchase. I can scan flowers and understand what type of plants they are. I can scan a dog and understand what breed it is. This future, where you have this camera as your cursor, so much of that is powered by augmented reality and part of the reason why we believe that this is very much a coming trend. We’re following consumer behavior.
On our platform right now, every single day we have over 250 million people that engage with AR. They’re doing it, and they’re doing it at scale. And our augmented reality is the most advanced. And it’s not just something that we are creating; we have an ecosystem of creators from an AR perspective that are building AR experiences. This software that we have called Lynn Studio is a free software, where they’re actually able to create experiences and publish into Snapchat for our community to use. They obviously use and like them at scale as I mentioned before. And now there’s this ecosystem that is evolving, where brands are using augmented reality to tell some of their stories to either drive performance of their brand or to drive awareness of different initiatives that they have. They’re often reaching out to these creators and these developers, some of whom are hobbyists and some have actually created agencies that are dedicated to making AR experiences for brands. So, they’re literally monetizing it.
Those amazing experiences that they’re creating are delivering value to our community. So, you have this wonderful virtual cycle that is happening, and now you’re actually starting to see some of the amazing augmented reality software that Snapchat has created outside of the Snapchat world and that is being used by brands.
There’s a recent announcement of a partnership with Amazon, for example, where they’re leveraging our AR capabilities to do Virtual Try-On glasses. That’s a part of the Amazon ecosystem.
Living here in LA, we have a partnership with SoFi Stadium; if you go to the football game, they are using the Snap AR platform on their jumbotron to enhance the experience of what’s happening in the football game. Some of our favorite and more viral lenses are being applied to fans in the stands as we go.
We have a partnership with Live Nation; when you go to a festival or to an artist concert, we actually are leveraging our AR capabilities to enhance your experience around that live show. At Austin City Limits, which happened a few weeks ago, you actually could use the Snapchat camera to solve one of the biggest problems that people have at festivals: Where do you find your friends? How do you find your friends? We have a friend finder that almost creates a beacon above your friend in this vast festival world so you can actually find them. Or it can give you an aerial mapping of the festival ground.
So, Snapchat AR started as this fun little toy—the puking rainbows and the dog ears—that knocked down the barriers for you to share and communicate and what helps make the platform so playful. It quickly transitioned to this utility and this ecosystem—something that we believe, ultimately, will continue to enhance the experience that people have through things that they care about.
Heather, you can see that we’ve been dabbling with a bunch with hardware where, in the future state, you can see these augmented reality experiences that are actually deployed through glasses. You’ll have these hands-free experiences where you’re just enhancing the real world that you’re a part of. Not a virtual world, but the real world through augmented reality. It will allow you to learn and to play and to really kind of make the most of that technology. It’s something that we’re very, very passionate about. And the reason we believe that it has such a strong future is because of the engagement. We’re following consumer behavior and what we’re seeing right now on the platform.
Heather: It’s amazing, just listening to you kind of rattle off a handful of these cases. The utility is real and it’s authentic, I think, even the idea of Find your Friends being that this is what the whole platform is really about.
So, pivoting a little bit, we started the conversation talking about our kids. Obviously there has been a lot of talk—and there continues to be—about social media’s negative impact on teens. Tell me about the family center and what expectations you have for its impact on the user experience, particularly for teens.
Kenny: Yes, this is something I’m really excited about. The Family Center is a format for parents to be able to have a bit of a pulse on what is happening with their teen on Snapchat—but still doing it in a way that actually respects their privacy. You can actually see who their friends are and who they’re communicating with the most, but you actually can’t see the content of those communications. It’s no different from when your kids go out. You know who they’re hanging out with, but you’re not in the middle of their conversations. It provides that type of balance and privacy and a safe way for parents to feel more comfortable about what’s happening on the platform. And I think that’s really indicative of the thoughtful approach that Snapchat has taken to, I’d say, privacy overall. Some of the decisions the platform has made historically—again, talking about ephemeral messaging, the idea that you can’t recruit large groups at scale of folks that you don’t know on the platform, the fact that disseminating misinformation actually just doesn’t exist on the platform—some of those decisions and even the thoughtful way that we approached the creation of the Family Center is really indicative of how we’ve thought about privacy overall and our commitment to it.
Heather: It’s also another example of the experience, even for the parent, mimicking real-life communication. As you said, you’re not in the middle of the conversation between your child and somebody else but just have that awareness and that knowledge and respect their privacy. The fact that it’s built and designed in a way that creates this kind of safe environment is really amazing and something that I think will be a testament to the longevity and growth over time. For sure.
We talked about augmented reality before; and, obviously, that is something that Snapchat has been ahead of from the beginning. I think you have said in the past that the best marketers are always curious about the future, always looking ahead to see what the next big thing is going to be. So, AR aside, are there other things that are kind of on your radar that you are beginning to think about? Any trends, any predictions that you can share with us?
Kenny: I’ll tell you one of the things that has become very clear, as a marketer over the years, is that consumers appreciate marketing that delivers value to them. So, finding ways to deliver value—it could be through information, it could be through humor, it could be through a variety of forms—but it’s very clear if you look at, say, page-streaming services, you look at ad blockers and things like that, consumers are trying to find ways to avoid advertising. But they actually really appreciate it when it adds value to them.
So, one of the focuses of our team is really thinking about how we actually can enhance experiences, enhance relationships, enhance how people experience the real world through augmented reality as a way to market Snapchat and the value that it actually delivers. And it’s borne on that insight, Heather, that people are either trying to avoid advertising and marketing or will embrace it if it actually adds value for them. So, we’re trying to think about things from a value-add and a value-creation standpoint. I expect most or all marketers are also trying to figure out their version of adding or enhancing experiences and adding value to their community. That’s one thing that’s a big, big focus of ours.
And I’d say on a somewhat related note, I mentioned a few examples of how we’re thinking about collaborating with partners to bring those AR experiences outside of Snapchat. That is something that is also a priority of ours, as well. An example of that is one of the areas where we see a tremendous amount of engagement on Snapchat is on Virtual Try-On using AR. You can try on apparel, you can try on makeup, you can try on shoes. I actually bought some sneakers off of Snapchat using our AR try-on capabilities, and it kind of democratizes what the fitting room is and where it is. It also leverages technology in a way where people can purchase wherever they are, try on wherever they are, and reduce the likelihood of returns—which is a big challenge for a lot of businesses.
We are focused on retail, in particular, as a place where we are going to be delivering some of our AR experiences through our partners and our partners’ environments. We think that actually has some tremendous utility and value to their consumers and our consumers but also leverages technology in a way that will be really meaningful. So that another area of focus for us.
Heather: Awesome. We talked a little bit about your past roles. What’s great is, as you said, there have been different centers of gravity—and I imagine you’re bringing all of them to the table in your current role. Looking back at some of the advice that you’ve received over the years, is there something that sticks with you that you kind of draw on or that you share with your team as you’re continuing to grow and nurture them?
Kenny: I’d probably say there are two things that I draw from in particular that are kind of top of mind for me right now, as we’ve built out the marketing team and practice and as we approach our go-to market. One is this almost obsession with the consumer, this consumer-centric approach that’s often driven by insights, by proximity. Because of that type of mindset, the very first team that I built out here, when I started at Snap, the very first capability was our marketing research, insights and analytics team. To me, there was no way that we were going to be able to do our best work without having a very clear handle and perspective—not just on current Snapchatters but of our addressable audience.
Also, those who are rejectors of Snapchat, what are the drivers of consideration or the drivers of rejection? And then, how do we have a consumer-obsessed or consumer-centric approach when we’re talking about B2B marketing in all things that we do. That is something that comes from the world of PepsiCo, for sure.
CPG brands are often very consumer-obsessed and insights and analytics-driven, and that’s something that we put into the DNA of the team as we built it. It’s something that I pulled from my PepsiCo experience, and it has really been helpful in terms of how we’ve gone to market, how we framed problems and opportunities, how we literally deploy our resources against things that are proven drivers of consideration and proven drivers of growth.
The other thing—which probably comes from my team sports background but also through some of my career experiences—is that I believe that “Culture eats strategy for breakfast.” I know that’s a famous Peter Drucker saying; and because of that, it’s really important to me to have created the right environment and the right culture for our team to deliver its best work. That’s a big focus of mine. That’s a big focus of the type of teams that we want to construct, the type of processes that we want to deploy, the type of behaviors and rituals that we have across the team, the type of things that I try to model as a leader. It’s been proven to me time after time that—if you have really talented people that are kind of aligned to a goal or a mission, that have clarity about the things that they are being asked to do, that are in a safe environment where they are feeling comfortable to challenge, make mistakes or use their instincts and their insight and intellect—you’re kind of fostering a good environment for success. I’m a former point guard in basketball, and some of the things I just described are the types of situations and behaviors and team environments that you want to create to be successful on the court. And I truly try to deploy those in the teams that I work with and manage and lead.
Heather: Amazing. And it’s great to think about you as athlete, as a member of a team, and what you bring to the table because of that. So, what’s your favorite basketball team now?
Kenny: I’m from Philly. My favorite team is the Sixers. I spent a little bit of my childhood in Michigan during the time of the Bad Boy era, Detroit Pistons. Isaiah Thomas was my favorite player growing up. I wore number 11 in college and really tried to pattern and model my game after him. Now I’m just a fan of good basketball; I don’t necessarily have a favorite particular player but just love to see the game played at a really high level.
Heather: Yeah, it’s a pretty fun sport to watch. And it’s a good segue into the question that we’ll kind of end this conversation on, which is: Who is your icon?
Kenny: Who is my icon? My icon will come not from the professional ranks but more from personal ranks. It is my mother, Denise Smith Allen, who may at some point hear this podcast. I may ask her to listen to it specifically for this, but she is just such a phenomenal woman. She raised myself and my brother. She was a single mom, raised two boys successfully and healthily. She was someone that was really passionate about making a difference in people’s life. She spent 30-plus years as a parole officer and helped people get their lives back on track. She spent some time as a social worker, as well, and is also passionate about continuing to learn and continuing to evolve. Over decades, she continued her education, got her masters, then her doctorate, and now has a PhD in criminal justice. She retired from being a parole officer and is now a professor teaching criminal justice. And she was in her 60s when she got her PhD. Just a remarkable, remarkable woman. She was also a Black Panther. Her commitment to community, her commitment to helping people, her commitment to growing and evolving and learning—as an individual—is incredibly, incredibly inspiring. She’s my icon, for sure.
[Heather: She sounds unbelievable. And Denise, if you’re listening, you’ve done a good job with Kenny. And you’re amazing. Maybe I’ll have you as a guest on the next season of this podcast. But I just want to thank you so much, Kenny. You’ve been such an amazing, kind, smart, creative guest. And I think you have opened up a lot of people’s eyes about Snapchat, where it is and where it’s going and really the kind of North Star of friends and fun and safety and just doing really amazing things. I can’t wait to see what you come up with next.
Kenny: Well, thank you. I’m grateful for you having me, Heather, and really enjoyed the conversation.
Our team is really thinking about how we actually can enhance relationships and how people experience the real world through AR.