Jay Needham is currently the Marketing Director for Angel’s Envy Kentucky Straight Bourbon Finished in Port Wine Barrels, based in Chicago. Angel’s Envy is part of Louisville Distilling Company, a wholly owned subsidiary of Bacardi Limited, the largest privately held spirits company in the world. As Marketing Director, Jay leads the overall brand strategic planning process for Angel’s Envy, establishing strategic objectives and all corresponding marketing programs and drivers for the brand. In addition, he is currently leading the brand’s international expansion, innovation pipeline strategy, and the evolution of the brand’s positioning. He also serves on Angel’s Envy’s Leadership Team, but most importantly, leads a dynamic team of marketers while also providing leadership to the largest single brand advocacy ambassador program in the industry.
Prior to being Marketing Director, Jay served as Senior Brand Manager for Angel’s Envy, where, among other things, he developed the brand’s first tactical plan, created the brand’s digital, social, and PR strategies, and launched the brand’s CRM platform. Before Angel’s Envy, Jay worked at Diageo plc, where he was first Associate Brand Manager for Tequila, and then Brand Manager for North American Whiskey, driving growth on amazing brands such as Tequila Don Julio, George Dickel Tennessee Whisky, Blade & Bow Kentucky Straight Bourbon, and the Orphan Barrel collection, among others. At Diageo, Jay also spearheaded key diversity initiatives for the Rainbow Network (Diageo’s LGBT employee group) while helping lead diversity recruitment, ultimately winning one of six individual “Celebrating You” awards across Diageo North America for these efforts.
Jay received his law degree and MBA from Duke University, and a B.A. in International Relations from Brown University, where he founded Attitude Dance Company, a multi-style dance company he still teaches today. Jay is passionate about diversity & inclusion, travel, dancing & the performing arts, and tennis.