With a BS in computer engineering from Washington University is St. Louis, Kerry started her career programming for grocery store scanner data. Looking for a more creative adventure, she joined Leo Burnett advertising firm in Chicago and then moved into their interactive agency, Giant Step, where she led application development for many years. Kerry is now the Executive Director, Corporate Digital Global Communications, at The Estée Lauder Companies, the global leader in prestige beauty where she is passionate about bridging technology and communications at large global corporations.
Kerry lives in New York City with her son, Dakota the cat and two hermit crabs. She is a regular visitor of the city's science and art museums and in her spare time volunteers for animal welfare and children’s causes.
WITH GROUPS CREATING PROGRAMS TO ENCOURAGE FEMALES TO CONSIDER STEM, WHAT IS THE BIGGEST BARRIER TO ENTRY THAT IS STILL PREVALENT TODAY?
I definitely think that people still feel there's a glass ceiling. Barriers also change so frequently though. Two months ago, my answer may have been different. The answer has been getting murkier lately. I think we definitely still have a long way to go but there are also inspiring female role models now and great programs. Until it becomes a non-issue, we just need to keep pushing for it.
WHAT OR WHO INSPIRES YOU?
It's definitely not just one person. I'm on a digital team with a wide variety of people. Some people are right brained and some are more left brained. I learn a lot from someone who has a more journalist point of view, but people from the digital side of things come up with creative approaches that change the whole product. I get inspiration from the whole core team working together.
Nature also inspires me! I find beauty in the rainy streets of Manhattan and in the wilderness. I enjoy beauty in the trees and the mountains because it makes me see the bigger picture and helps me to not just get lost in the daily grind.
WHAT IS YOUR PROUDEST MOMENT/ACCOMPLISHMENT?
I'm proud to say that I have an engineering degree because there were very few women with me when I studied computer science. People who doubted me throughout my education just gave me motivation to keep going. My dad was the person to inspire me to pursue math and science and I have him to thank for that.