Karen Walker

Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer

Karen Walker is the Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer at Cisco, overseeing Global Marketing. Walker and her team are responsible for building and strengthening Cisco's brand, supporting growth strategies, cultivating opportunities in new and existing markets, and increasing demand for Cisco's solutions globally.

Since joining Cisco, Walker has championed marketing's role as an accountable business function, aligning closely with sales teams, engineering teams, and Cisco partners. Karen has made strategic investments to further Marketing's vision to become the leader in real-time, personalized marketing. Most notably, she has invested in the newest marketing technologies to build a multi-award-winning techstack (Markie 2017 and 2018, Stackie 2017, and more), creating a world-class digital marketing infrastructure optimizing for the best experience for our customers, sellers, and partners. Walker has also led as Cisco's brand value increased 16% to $34.6B dollars, ranking #15 on Interbrand's Best Global Brands list.

Leading up to her promotion to CMO, Walker excelled in her various roles at Cisco, starting as the Global VP of Services Marketing, growing to take on Segments and Partners, and then finally becoming SVP of Go-to-market.

Walker's 20-plus years in the IT industry have included senior field and marketing leadership roles in Europe, North America, and the Asia Pacific region. She joined Cisco from Hewlett-Packard, where she held business and consumer leadership positions including VP Marketing for HP Services, Executive Director of Consumer Digital Entertainment and VP Personal Systems groups.

Walker is a recognized industry authority on both technology and marketing topics, frequently participating on panels and giving keynotes around the world. For three years in a row she has been recognized by Forbes as one of the world's Most Influential CMOs, currently ranked in the Top 10 globally. She is a member of the Board of the Association of National Advertisers and is a strong supporter of the #SeeHer movement – an effort led by the ANA to accurately portray women and girls in the media by 2020. Walker also sponsors multiple initiatives to accelerate female leadership within Cisco and has lectured on business thought leadership at multiple universities.

Walker holds a Bachelor of Science degree with joint Honors in Chemistry and Business Studies from Loughborough University in England and was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Business Administration from the University of Sunderland in 2018.


November 13, 2018


The bridge between hope and possibility

Introducing the Bridge to Possible, our new Cisco campaign that demonstrates what is possible when innovative technology and imaginative people coalesce around a common purpose.

June 28, 2018


Creating Connections at Cannes

Last week I attended the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity and had the chance to speak about our partnership with Live Nation - here are my key takeaways.

June 10, 2018


Empowering Women One Course at a Time

Cisco has a long history of using technology to connect the world and change lives for the better. Our brand is all about the connections that make anything possible.

May 22, 2018


Introducing Cisco Webex: The More Intuitive Way to Work

Last month we announced the relaunch of Cisco Webex and today we begin sharing the story with the world by kicking off a new marketing campaign, with a new face!

Putting (Brand) Safety First

At Cisco, our brand is one of the most valuable assets we have, which is why we make sure that we are doing everything we can to protect it.

Expanding Connected Conservation in 2018

Following a successful pilot in 2017 to save rhinos in South Africa, Cisco and Dimension Data are expanding their solution into more countries to protect more endangered species. Read more in this Cisco and Dimension Data co-authored blog.

March 6, 2018


GDPR: It’s Getting Personal

With the deadline to the enforcement of the EU GDPR approaching, it is important to understand the future implications to our business and how we engage with our customers.

February 22, 2018


Joining the (Olympic) Movement to #SeeHer in the Media

The #SeeHer movement is a global effort, led by the Association of National Advertisers, to accurately portray all women and girls in the media.

February 16, 2018


Establishing Normalcy to Do the Extraordinary

At Cisco, we are proud of the good we, together with our partners and customers, do with our technology. This week we launched a campaign to share those stories.