Our Leadership

“Just stay classy and get the job done” 

Karen Smreker

Career Showcase Host Committee

Karen began her career while attending Michigan State University. She worked as a research assistant during her Masters program and taught Advertising courses while pursuing her doctorate. She has multiple publications to her name ranging from cyberbullying to sponsorships and corporate reputation. After completing her doctoral classwork, Karen took a job with Nielsen. During her six years with Nielsen, she worked as a Program Manager across their Digital products and TV panel. Her last two years at Nielsen were spent in Community Engagement, managing outreach and sponsorships across the state of Florida. She now works as the Director Member Services + Community Engagement at Tampa Bay Wave, connecting tech companies to resources to help grow their business. 
Karen became involved with Think Big in 2019, after hearing Tony speak at Startup Week Tampa Bay. She originally acted as a Career Showcase presenter, facilitating field trips and talks for the Nielsen team. When she changed companies, she was able to transition to a Career Showcase host which allows her to be with the same school each month and establish connections with the students. Karen is a founding member of True North Society, Think Big’s young professional arm. Karen is a member of the Synapse Florida Impact board, where she also serves on the Inclusion Lives Here and Programming Committees. She is an acting chair for the University of Tampa Board of Counselors, where she oversees their upcoming Minaret at Sunset event. 
A Michigan native, Karen has spent the last 7 years in Tampa with no plans of leaving. If she isn’t working or giving time to one of her boards, you can likely find her in Channelside with her pets. 

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