In many cases, building one of the most successful independent public relations agencies in the US would be enough on its own to earn someone consideration for one of our Outstanding Individual Achievement SABRE Awards. And Pete Marino did that a decade ago, having launched Chicago-based Dig Communications in 2004 and sold it to Twin Cities advertising group Olson in 2011.

But Marino has also earned a place on our Influence100 list of the most powerful in-house communicators, after leaving Olson to join client MolsonCoors as its vice president of communications, and then being promoted to chief communications and government affairs officer,  launching the highly acclaimed MCTV platform; supporting CSR and sustainability initiatives; and serving on the company strategy ande operating committees.

There are not many PR professionals who have scaled the heights of both the agency and client sides of the business, but Marino has gone beyond even that. In the summer of 2017, he added operational leadership for the company’s craft and import division, Tenth and Blake, and last year grew the Tenth and Blake portfolio by 15%.

“Pete is truly one of a kind and is an invaluable and trusted member of our executive team,” says Gavin Hattersley, CEO of MillerCoors. “He brings a tremendous commercial and business focused mindset to all of our communications.”

Marino graduated from UW-Madison with BA in journalism and began his career working with agencies such as Cramer-Krasselt and Ketchum and in-house with Miller Brewing Company before leaving PR to pursue a full-time MBA at UCLA Anderson.

He then spent three years as a strategy consultant at The Boston Consulting Group before founding Dig Communications in 2004. He left the firm in 2012, a year after selling to Olson (now ICF Next).

In his role leading public affairs and communications officer, Marino oversees state and federal government affairs, corporate social responsibility, environmental sustainability and communications, including brand PR, media relations, employee communications, sales and distributor communications, meetings and events, and corporate social media.

Marino is active in his community, serving on the boards of the Lookingglass Theater, Chicago Chamber of Commerce and Chicago Sports Commission.  With his wife Jennifer, he has three children—Max, Sofia, and Lily—and a dog, Reggie.

Marino will receive the SABRE Award for Outstanding Individual Achievement at our awards dinner in New York on May 7.