A recognized leader with robust experience in media relations, strategic and crisis communications, reputation and events management, corporate communications, stakeholder, and community engagement, Vanessa Figueroa understands how to navigate the public relations landscape and a diverse array of public affairs challenges.
Vanessa Figueroa joined Bolton-St. Johns as a Vice President in 2023. She advises clients in the healthcare, energy, economic development, non-profit and education sectors on their public affairs initiatives along with providing strategic communications counsel.
Before joining Bolton-St. John’s, Vanessa served as a Vice President of Public Affairs at a strategic communications agency in New York City for nearly four years. She has a record of success in executing integrated communications campaigns and has driven prominent results for her clients. She worked across diverse industries that included hospitality, corporate, lifestyle, non-profit, cannabis, public housing and economic development.
She has provided consultation and in-house representation of corporate, government, and nonprofit clients such as Comcast, ComEd, Dove, Wrigley, Butterball Turkey, U.S. Cellular, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Illinois, Pfizer, Sinai Health System, Chicago Metropolitan Breast Cancer Task Force, World Business Chicago, Latino Policy Forum, The Chicago Community Trust, Year Up Chicago, various elected officials and the Chicago White Sox.
Vanessa launched Figueroa Strategic Communications, a Chicago-based public affairs consulting firm, in 2014, working with high-profile non-profit organizations, Chicago Teacher’s Union, SEIU Healthcare Illinois/Indiana/Missouri/Kansas, WTTW/PBS, Gun Violence Prevention Political Action Committee and elected officials. She is proud to have worked with her first client and first-ever run-off challenger in Chicago mayoral history, Jesus “Chuy” Garcia, who is now a U.S. Congressman for Illinois’ fourth district.
Prior to launching her firm, Vanessa worked at reputable Chicago public affairs firms. She has also worked as an in-house public affairs manager at a global media corporation where she worked with community and business leaders, elected officials, and nonprofit organizations to promote the company’s education, government and public affairs initiatives.
Since relocating to New York City in 2018, the world’s most competitive media market, Vanessa was accepted into a professional development organization, The Alumni Society, connecting thousands of mid-to senior-level Latino executives in 2023. The Alumni Society provides networking opportunities for growth in the private sector, with the overall goal of advancing Latino leadership in corporate America. Vanessa also was accepted into the New York City No Barriers Leadership Summit in 2018. She was also a participant at Communications Week 2018 and a member of the Hispanic Public Relations' NY Chapter.
She's been published in The Huffington Post and featured in national PR news in the Bulldog Reporter in 2016. Vanessa was also featured as one of Chicago’s Top 25 Young Latino Leaders in Latino Leaders National Magazine in 2012.
A Chicago native and a former Big Ten soccer player, Vanessa earned her Bachelors of Sociology from Northwestern University and Master’s in Public Service Management from DePaul University. She started her career working for the City of Chicago serving as an aldermanic community relations liaison and conducted statewide grassroots outreach efforts for then-U.S. Senator Barack Obama.
Vanessa lives in Brooklyn with her husband Sean Morales-Doyle, and their daughter, Mia.