Denise Dee Clark
Industry professional & Board Member
Denise Clark is a global information technology executive who has enjoyed a remarkable four-decade career leading technical groups for a variety of consumer giants: Estée Lauder, Hasbro, Mattel, Warner Music, MCI Systemhouse and Apple Computer. Denise has been an independent director for United Natural Foods, Inc. (UNFI) for the past seven years and sits on the Audit, Nominating and Governance Committees. She was elected to the board of Caesars Entertainment Corporation (CZR) in 2018 and sits on the Audit and Compensation (Chair) Committees. After two years of supporting Best Friends Animal Society as a National Campaign Leadership Council member, Denise joined the national board of Best Friends Animal Society in 2019.
As the CIO of Estée Lauder, Denise thoughtfully guided the global information technology organization and its outsourced providers through strategic transformational change while developing world-class talent and building relationships. Denise is a storyteller, translating complex to simple, ensuring that executive teams understand and leverage the ability of technology to drive growth. She oversaw global IT strategy, updated technology required for growth and retail expansion, and was an Executive Leadership Team member.
Denise is quick to credit the roots of her success: growing up in rural Ohio with a Catholic education, followed by 13 years in the Navy. The Navy's slogan of her day (It's not just a job, it's an adventure) proved true for Denise: She trained as a cryptologist/analyst, was selected for an ROTC scholarship, graduated, and was commissioned a U.S. Navy officer. As a Cryptologic Officer for the National Security Agency (NSA), she was both the Operations Watch Officer for the U.S. Navy's 6th Fleet in the Mediterranean and Officer in Command of the Navy Joint Defense Space Communications Station in Australia. Denise credits the Navy with giving her the intense technology base, discipline, self-confidence, maturity, perseverance and leadership skills needed for her successful private-industry career.
Her prior board experience includes six years on the National AIDS Fund Board of Trustees (Chair for two years), SAP Consumer Products Advisory Council (10 years) and Women in Technology Institute. Her National AIDS Fund experience showed her the impact that one person can bring.
Denise earned her M.B.A. from San Jose State University in partnership with Stanford University and Apple, Inc. She has a B.S. in sociology from the University of Missouri as a Navy ROTC Scholarship Student, which leveraged her engineering aptitude. Dee enjoys running with Libby (an affenpinscher), golfing, hiking and pursuing her avocational passions in art, wine, gardening and history. She and Gina, her spouse of nearly three decades, live in Los Angeles with Libby and their two cats, Cagney and Lacey.