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.


August 25, 2017


The Network. Intuitive. The Next Chapter with Peter Dinklage

Two months ago, Cisco unveiled our vision for the new era of networking, The Network. Intuitive. Our next chapter helps businesses understand the game-changing nature of the new network.

June 26, 2017


Introducing The Network. Intuitive.

Last week, Cisco ushered in a new era of networking with intent-based technologies that constantly learn, adapt, and protect. This game-changer for businesses requires a marketing campaign that is equally game-changing.

December 12, 2016


There’s Never Been a Better Time…to Tell Cisco’s Story

Technology is changing everything. It’s solving some of the world’s greatest challenges and transforming our customers’ businesses in new and unprecedented ways. Our job is to help our customers navigate this complexity—so there’s never been a better time to tell the Cisco story clearly and concisely. That’s why I’m so excited to announce that Oliver […]

September 6, 2016


Cisco’s Digital Network Shines at Rio 2016

Connecting the unconnected: An overview of our work in the Porto Maravilha region of Rio, where free public Wi-Fi helps foster real-world ideas, action and digital transformation.

There’s Never Been A Better Time

Discover real stories from our customers and partners about how our technology is transforming entire industries, countries, and even saving lives.

October 1, 2015


How the Internet of Everything is changing lives

The Internet of Everything (IoE) is already helping to unlock new possibilities for health care. What’s coming next is a new kind of connected medicine with the potential to save lives. A networked connection of people, process, data, and things is transforming healthcare through developments like electronic health records that are customized and secured for […]

July 15, 2014


Smart Companies Go Beyond Social Listening

Recently Sprinklr asked me how companies today are in trouble if they’re not keeping up with social disruption. Which led me to consider:  What makes a company smart when it comes to being social? Answer:  Smart companies recognize three things… Customers’ social expectations continue to rise. More and more consumers and B2B buyers are contacting […]