Co-founder and principal of The Cohl Group, David is a recognized expert in research-guided strategic communications, public relations, and branding. He serves a leadership role in research, strategy, and consulting projects, including ongoing work for The Syracuse University College of Engineering and Computer Science, Washington University in St. Louis, and the development of several proprietary rankings models currently being produced with our research and technology partners.
Prior to joining The Cohl Group, David spent 15 years as senior vice president and partner at FleishmanHillard’s world headquarters in St. Louis. In addition to corporate clients such as Visa, AT&T, Wal-Mart, Dell Computer, Occidental Petroleum, Caterpillar, Sun Microsystems, Imation, Maxtor. David served major nonprofit and higher education clients, including Georgia Tech, Washington University in St. Louis, the University of Kansas, and the Saint Louis Art Museum.
Prior to entering the business world, David was a research director at the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique in Toulouse, France, and a lecturer at the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales. He has numerous academic publications in English, French, Spanish, and Catalan.
Raised halfway between Princeton University and the Institute for Advanced Study, David received an A.B. magna cum laude in Social Studies from Harvard, an M.B.A. from the University of Kansas, a master’s degree in history from the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (Paris), and a Ph.D. in anthropology from the University of Pennsylvania.
Over the course of his career, David has been awarded National Science Foundation Graduate and Postdoctoral Fellowships, a Fulbright fellowship to France, and the Institute for Public Relations Jack Felton Golden Ruler Award. David has served as chair of the Institute for Public Relations Research and Measurement Commission, and ex-officio member of the board of trustees of the Institute for Public Relations. He is on the board of directors of Temple Israel in Saint Louis, and active in several local volunteer organizations.
David and his wife, Sheila Stanton, split their time between Burlington, Vermont and Alexandria, Minnesota, along with a golden retriever and cat. Outside of work, look for David on a bicycle or in a kayak. They have four children living and working in the San Francisco Bay Area; New York City; Burlington, Vermont; and Brussels, Belgium.