When her family came to Cambridge, MA, from Jamaica, Bryony Bouyer ’90 MBA was just 13, and wasn’t prepared for the November cold.
“You can’t describe cold to someone,” she chuckles. “If you’ve never experienced cold, you don’t know what it really means!”
But the cold didn’t slow her for a moment. After high school at Cambridge Rindge Latin, she went on to earn a bachelor’s degree from UMass Dartmouth. She joined Reebok’s marketing department and worked her way up the ranks, eventually achieving the role of Brand Director.
A recruiter came calling with an opportunity at Hasbro when Bouyer was nearly ready to deliver her second child, and soon she had a new child and a new job at Hasbro, where she’s been since 1995. She has held several leadership roles in branding, marketing, and licensing for the global play and entertainment giant.
“I have never said ‘that’s not my job,’” Bouyer asserts, adding that she believes finding opportunities to do more beyond one’s immediate role usually pays off.
Today, she is Hasbro’s first Senior Vice President of Diversity and Inclusion, and Multi-Cultural Strategies – a role she conceived and proposed after having been the executive sponsor of Hasbro’s diversity network. She brings her international background, along with her passion and enthusiasm, to a role she felt would be an important strategic move for the company.
“Being a really strong and inspirational leader sometimes means you need to place others ahead of yourself. You have to pause, stand still, and let others shine.”
Her work is both internally and externally focused. She develops strategies around the diverse consumer, and uses those insights to inform workforce goals, as well, to ensure that the company reflects the population it's serving, whether it be in race, gender, sexual orientation, ability, military service, or other identity.
Her goal is to work with teams across the company to ensure that they’re embedding diverse insights, strategy, and marketing in everything they do.
“My job is to educate and help people think about these things,” she says. “If the diverse and multicultural consumer represents 50 percent of the US population today (for people over 18), then what we’re doing needs to reflect that.”
Describing herself as an extrovert, she sees herself as a “servant leader,” and puts great emphasis on the human connection of leadership.
“Sometimes, just stopping by and asking – genuinely asking – ‘how are you doing?’ is so impactful,” she says. “Being a really strong and inspirational leader sometimes means you need to place others ahead of yourself. You have to pause, stand still, and let others shine.”
Coming to Bryant allowed Bouyer to “master her craft,” she says, while still working full-time in marketing. Though the many team and group projects could be a challenge for an evening student with a demanding job heavy on business travel, she says she appreciated her Bryant professors’ industry experience and the authenticity it brought to her degree program. And, she could use her learning in real-time on the job.
Becoming an adjunct faculty member is on Bouyer’s agenda, too, she says, because she finds sharing her experience and knowledge with others very rewarding. She frequently finds herself in the position of mentoring others – both personally and professionally – and says it’s gratifying to help people think through their challenges and see their way clear to opportunity.
UMass Dartmouth awarded Bouyer an honorary doctorate in 2018. She and her husband live in Foxboro, MA.