R. Ethan Braden serves as the executive vice president and chief marketing and communications officer at Purdue University and Purdue University Global. Braden leads Purdue University—ranked as one of the Top Ten Most Innovative Schools in America by U.S. News and World Report—and Purdue Global in the pursuit of its mission by passionately positioning, promoting, and protecting the Purdue brand and portfolio worldwide.
In October 2021, Fast Company magazine selected Purdue University as one of its inaugural “Brands That Matter,” a list honoring companies and organizations that authentically communicate their mission and ideals and give people compelling reasons to care about them. The only university and the only Indiana entity named a Brand That Matters, Purdue was selected alongside Nike, 3M, McDonald’s, Ford, Yeti, and other large multinational conglomerates, small companies, and nonprofits.
In 2020, the American Marketing Association recognized Braden as Marketer of the Year and Purdue University’s central marketing and communications team as Team of the Year, both for higher education.
Braden has been featured in Fast Company, The Washington Post, Ad Age, The Hechinger Report, and The Morning Brew. He has spoken at Salesforce’s Dreamforce conference and appeared on numerous podcasts related to brand management, marketing and higher education. Braden teaches personal branding to student athletes in Purdue University’s Optimizing Personal Brand and Image class, an innovative partnership between Purdue’s School of Management and Purdue Athletics.
Previous to Purdue, Braden worked for Eli Lilly and Company for over a decade, where he served in a variety of senior marketing and sales leadership roles in the U.S. and globally. He worked to build, launch, and manage some of Lilly’s and the pharmaceutical industry’s most successful and life-changing billion-dollar brands.
Braden earned his MBA from the University of Notre Dame and his bachelor’s degree from Willamette University. He lives in West Lafayette, Indiana, with his wife, Betsy, their son, Benjamin, and their daughter, Margaret.