Hilary McQuaide | Influence 100

Hilary McQuaide 

Head of Communications 



Hilary McQuaide has been head TikTok communications since 2017, way before the social media entertainment platform surged in popularity, especially with Gen Z — and the current crisis it faces as safety concerns, primarily around whether TikTok shares sensitive data with the Chinese government, is fueling efforts to ban the platform in the US and elsewhere.

Investor relations and comms specialist Hilary McQuaide has a track record of spotting future technology giants ripe for acquisition and getting into their comms teams early to shape their approach. In March 2022, she announced that TikTok had imposed restrictions on its service in Russia as a result of the Ukraine invasion, saying the platform would block livestreaming and uploading of new content in Russia after the Kremlin criminalised the spreading of what it deemed to be fake news about the invasion.

She was previously the first comms hire and member of the exec team at Yik Yak, responsible for public relations, company positioning, internal comms, and university relations. From 2012 to joining Yik Yak in 2015 she was the first comms employee at Dropbox, overseeing its international expansion and looking after crisis comms, product comms, and analyst relations.

After starting her career as an analyst at Sequoia Capital, McQuaide moved to the comms function of one of the companies it backed, Clearwell Systems, continuing after it was bought by Semantic in 2011.