Catherine C. Keenan
Catherine Keenan serves as a Senior Advisor with HillStaffer. A C-suite executive with 32 years of Public Affairs and Communications experience at Trinseo and Dow Chemical, Ms. Keenan is particularly well-known for her Crisis Management, Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and Environmental, Social, Governance (ESG), and M&A acumen. She advises HillStaffer clients on a variety of corporate and government relations issues, including strategic planning, program management, messaging, sustainability/CSR program development, organizational and cultural transformation, change management, and B2B branding.
Prior to HillStaffer Ms. Keenan served as the Chief Communications Officer and, subsequently, Chief Sustainability Officer at Trinseo (Bain Capital/NYSE:TSE), a $4B global materials company in plastics, latex, and synthetic rubber. As CCO, Ms. Keenan had global responsibility for brand management, internal and external communications, public relations, government affairs, and public policy. As the CSO, Ms. Keenan created the Sustainability/Corporate Social Responsibility program, including GRI-aligned public reporting, and designed innovative EH&S programs that helped employees deliver best-ever safety and environmental performance in the top decile of industry.
Under Ms. Keenan’s guidance, Trinseo achieved Newsweek magazine’s “America’s Most Responsible Companies” rating for 2020. Ms. Keenan also led efforts that raised the company’s CDP score from D to B (Carbon Disclosure Program – climate), and she guided Trinseo’s adoption of Operation Clean Sweep, a plastics industry initiative to contain and eliminate loss of pellets in manufacturing and transportation. Ms. Keenan was involved in numerous other industry initiatives as well, including the Essential2 campaign, Plastics: Too Valuable to Waste, and the From Single Use to Re-Use campaign.
Ms. Keenan started her career at Dow Chemical, where she spent 22 years and served as the Director of Business Public Affairs, leading a global team of 120 professionals responsible for communications of all Dow businesses. She drove best practices in marketing communications globally, and successfully aligned business branding and communications programs with corporate brand and messaging. Ms. Keenan served as a trusted advisor on how to engage with leadership and external stakeholders, and developed a 100-day plan to introduce three new CEOs for Dow (2007), K-Dow (2008), and Styron (2010).
Ms. Keenan has won numerous awards for her professional work, including the Genesis Award for outstanding people leadership (Dow Chemical), Accredited in Public Relations (APR) designation from Public Relations Society of America, a Silver Anvil Award, and the PRSA Award of Excellence.
Ms. Keenan earned her Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Journalism/Science Writing, and a Minor in Chemistry, from Lehigh University. She has also completed the Transformational Leadership executive education program at the University of Virginia, Darden Graduate School of Business Administration.
Ms. Keenan serves in numerous volunteer roles as well, including the Science History Institute / Chemical Heritage Foundation, Board of Overseers; Leadership Philadelphia, executive program (2014); Valley Youth House, Board of Governors, (2014- 2019); Arthur W. Page Society (Elected 2011); Chemical and Industry Magazine, Editorial Advisory Board..