Brad Hiranaga Joins Cotopaxi as Chief Brand Officer in Latest C-suite Expansion
November 3, 2022
Cotopaxi positions for next phase of growth with additions to leadership team
Salt Lake City, UT (November 3, 2022) — Certified B Corporation™ and impact-driven adventure lifestyle brand, Cotopaxi, welcomes new Chief Brand Officer Brad Hiranaga as the latest C-suite executive to join the team during an exciting year for brand growth. Hiranaga joins Cotopaxi from his most recent post as Chief Marketing Officer of General Mills, where he spent 5 years building some of the most loved brands in the world and transforming marketing to create remarkable experiences for people. Over his 18 year career at General Mills, Hiranaga commercially led and grew a $2 billion business unit, expanded and integrated e-commerce into all brands in the portfolio, digitized the “Box Tops for Education” loyalty program, and established the mission for General Mills: Be a Force for Good. Hiranaga’s ability to build inspired, high-performing teams motivated to deliver bold marketing ideas that solve real problems, grow businesses, and shape culture set him apart for the position.
“Cotopaxi is poised for a meteoric ascension as an impact-driven adventure brand, and Brad is the perfect fit to help drive us through the next phase,” explains Davis Smith, Founder and CEO. “We’re thrilled to have his expertise and insights, and to bolster what has been — and will be — an exciting period of exceptional new hires and growth.”
Hiranaga is charged with building the next iconic global outdoor brand, driving the continued high-trajectory growth of Cotopaxi, and creating a cultural movement behind Cotopaxi’s mission of fighting extreme poverty, inspiring adventure, and moving people to do more good. Hiranaga will be responsible for Cotopaxi’s brand purpose, experience, and image. He will oversee marketing, advertising, creative, design, community, experiences, public relations, and activation.
“As a marketer, the opportunity to build and grow the Cotopaxi brand is my dream job. The company culture and social movement that Davis and his team have created is something extremely special and has tremendous personal appeal to me,” says Hiranaga. “Cotopaxi is a remarkable brand, with incredible potential to positively impact culture and people. Trailblazing how a company can transform capitalism and fight extreme poverty to improve the human condition is beyond inspiring to me.”
Hiranaga officially started in September. He is based out of Minneapolis, Minnesota, thanks to Cotopaxi’s employee-centered flexible and remote work policies. In addition to working with Smith, Hiranaga will work closely with Damien Huang, President of Cotopaxi; Cindy Grönberg Moldin, Vice President of Brand; and Sam Ricks, Vice President of Creative Design, to strategically build and expand the Cotopaxi brand and create a cohesive customer experience. Outside of work, Hiranaga enjoys being a dad to two teenage boys, coaching basketball, and spending free time outside surfing, wakeboarding, golfing, and skiing.
Hiranaga is the third heavy-hitter leadership acquisition for Cotopaxi in the last six months. President Damien Huang joined the team in May having previously served as CEO of Eddie Bauer. More recently, Grace Zuncic began her tenure as Chief People and Impact Officer following decades of experience driving strategic workplace practices and impact-driven initiatives with companies like Chobani.
“Cotopaxi is defined by a massive opportunity to represent something special in the outdoors — a new brand dedicated to a fresh perspective on what defines the outdoor experience, powered by an innovative product ethos, seeking to unlock empathy through adventure, and to end extreme poverty within our lifetime,” comments Huang. “A people-driven organization that succeeds in equal measure from Xs and Os and the hearts and minds of the team we’re building, with a way of doing business that interweaves environmental and human sustainability. It’s simply an amazing time to be part of this organization.”
This purpose-driven mindset is a common thread in what attracted Hiranaga, Zuncic and Huang to the brand. “We’re seeing an obvious shift to purpose-driven brands — brands that do the actual work, not just the storytelling — and companies that put people at the center. All of this combined so beautifully represents Cotopaxi,” explains Zuncic. “How we empower all our people — no matter where they sit in or outside the organization — to keep pushing on sustainability and human rights, from more reselling and up-cycled products to qualify of life initiatives for our manufacturing partners and hourly associates, will no doubt differentiate us.”
Media Contact: OutsidePR | Morgan Williams | Morgan@OutsidePR.com | 724.388.7167
Cotopaxi is a twice certified carbon-neutral adventure lifestyle brand founded to create sustainably designed products that fight extreme poverty, inspire adventure, and move people to do good. As a certified B Corporation, we believe in using the power of business as a force for social, environmental, and economic good. Our creed, Gear for Good, touches every aspect of our company. Cotopaxi is committed to making all of our gear using repurposed, recycled, or responsible materials by 2025. We allocate a minimum of 1% of our annual revenue to the Cotopaxi Foundation which awards grants to outstanding nonprofit partners carefully selected for their track records at improving the human condition and alleviating poverty. In 2021, we aided over 1 million people in extreme poverty through targeted grants to outstanding organizations with proven methodologies. For more information please visit https://www.cotopaxi.com