Whitney M Cunningham

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At a young age, Whitney Cunningham recognized the value of leading by example. Born in West Palm Beach, Florida, Ms. Cunningham witnessed the destitution in the small southern city, which only motivated her to do better and think bigger than what she saw in the community that surrounded her.
As the first-born child of a West Palm Beach attorney and county Judge, Whitney’s parents inspired her to be the best. Thus so, Whitney left behind the palm trees for the snow and ventured to Hanover, New Hampshire to attend Dartmouth College. While fulfilling her dreams of attending an Ivy League school, Whitney took a leap of faith during the fall of her senior year to become a cast member on the reality mega-show, America’s Next Top Model. “My parents were shocked, but they knew they had always encouraged me to follow my dreams. As long as I graduated they were okay with my decision to take a leave of absence to roll the dice.” Her ultimate goal in going on the series was to get a foot in the door in the entertainment industry. “I never quite identified myself with being America’s Next Top Model. I saw Tyra Banks and identified with her drive and motivation to become a household name as a business woman and entrepreneur. I simply wanted to be in her presence and learn as much as I could. To me, the experience was an intense 10-week internship.”
After her experience on the show, Ms. Cunningham returned to Dartmouth. After walking with her class in June 2007, she headed to New York City to complete her last 2 credits at Columbia University to earn a bachelor of arts in Sociology. Because she knew that modeling was never an ultimate goal, she sought out other avenues that would provide the right fit for her interests and skill set. Ms. Cunningham used her abilities as an ingenious writer, speaker, and leader and became a tutor SCORE Educational Center (a subsidiary of The Washington Post and Kaplan, Inc.) while searching for permanent positions in an afflicted economy. Realizing the joy that working with children and families in Harlem brought, Ms. Cunningham transitioned from part-time tutor to full-time marketing manager for the center. “There was something about connecting with a family or child, understanding a need, and delivering that resonated with me.” Although she was given a marketing budget of only seventy-five dollars per month, Whitney’s innovative grassroots marketing tactics helped increase center leads by over 50% in only 1 month as marketing manager. It was at SCORE! that marketing, as a practice, was revealed to Ms. Cunningham. “I realized that it didn’t matter if I was marketing a tutoring program to a family or marketing oranges for a street vendor. The bottom line is to identify an audience or consumer, figure out what drives that audience then connect with them.”
Major changes in company structure led Whitney to explore other career opportunities. Realizing that marketing was her niche, she decided to blend her experience in entertainment with her abilities as a marketer and accept a position at Bad Boy Entertainment’s marketing agency, Blue Flame. After 6 months as marketing assistant for the entire agency and two senior-level executives, her work ethic and output spoke for itself. Ms. Cunningham was promoted to marketing coordinator for Bad Boy Worldwide and Blue Flame reporting directly to Bad Boy’s Chief Marketing Officer, Amani Duncan.
Upon my first meeting with Whitney, I knew she was something special. After working with her, my initial perceptions and expectations were not only correct but she exceeded them by leaps and bounds.  Her tenacity, drive, creativity and play-to-win attitude is exceptional. She has become an integral component of the Marketing team and I feel lucky to know her. - Amani Duncan
“The transition was exactly what I was looking for. Amani realized my need for challenge and teamwork. We collaborated, brainstormed, and built a mentor/mentee relationship that ultimately aided in fostering an ideal creative and free-thinking environment.”  
 
Continuing on an upward trajectory exclusively at The Blue Flame Agency, Ms. Cunningham currently plans, develops, and executes Cîroc National Account programming in on-premise and off-premise accounts nationwide. She was directly involved in the mandating of Cîroc at Hard Rock Cafés and Hotels, A&P, Kroger, Intercontinental, W, and Trump hotels. Fusing entertainment, music, and marketing Whitney also oversees Ciroc’s branded entertainment division where she works to ensure that the brand is constantly and organically interfacing with its consumer on television, in movies, music videos, and webisodes.
Whitney lives by her life’s motto—If some ONE tells you you can’t, prove to the WORLD that you can. She enjoys reading, traveling, and learning about the unknown.
Ms. Cunningham resides in New York City. 

Alumni Information
Class: 
2007
Marketing Manager
Bad Boy Entertainment Worldwide