Betsy Owens

Betsy Owens

Position Chief Marketing and Innovation Officer & Senior Vice President
Phone Number Description Phone

Telephone Number


About Me

About Me

Betsy Owens is a brand-builder and innovator with an extensive background in driving strategy for some of the world’s leading organizations — across sectors, channels and geographies.

Since 2013, she has served as Chief Marketing and Innovation Officer and Senior Vice President at Shirley Ryan AbilityLab. In this role, she oversees several key areas, including the organization’s marketing and communications, market and referral development, technology and innovation commercialization, educational outreach, and Advisory Services (providing strategy, design and training services to organizations nationally and internationally). In 2017, Betsy led a rebranding that drove the 66-year-old organization’s renaming (from Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago) and move into the new $550 million, 1.2 million-square-foot research hospital.

Previously, Betsy was President and Chief Operating Officer for Farley’s & Sathers, a top confectionery manufacturer. Before that, she oversaw Sears’ Kenmore brand, with profit-and-loss responsibility for the multibillion-dollar business. Her overhaul of Kenmore’s product design, brand positioning and marketing strategy restored Kenmore to the No. 1 appliance brand based on unit and dollar sales. Prior to Sears, Betsy served as Chief Marketing Officer and Senior Vice President at Rand McNally, the leading source for maps, navigation and travel content, where she directed strategy, marketing, brand and product development for five of the company’s businesses. Earlier in her career, she held leadership roles in both North America and Asia for SC Johnson. She also worked in brand management and sales for Gillette and Procter & Gamble.

Betsy earned her MBA and BA, cum laude, from Harvard University. In 2020, she served as the keynote speaker for the National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO) Chicago’s premier event. In 2019, she was a featured speaker at Modern Healthcare’s Women Leaders in Healthcare Conference.


Shirley Ryan AbilityLab

355 East Erie

Chicago, IL 60611

Education & Professional Associations



    1976 - 1980
    BA, History and Literature, Harvard University
    1982 - 1984
    MBA, General Management
    Professional Associations


    2013 - Present
    Board Member, Winnetka Public Schools
    2014 - Present
    Board Member, Schurz Communications

Work History

  • 2011 - 2012
    President & COO
    Farley's & Sathers Candy Company
  • 2009 - 2011
    General Manager - Kenmore
    Sears Holding Corp.
  • 2003 - 2009
    Chief Marketing Officer & Senior Vice President
    Rand McNally
  • 1990 - 2003
    Division Director, Home Storage and Other Roles
  • 1984 - 1990
    Assistant /Associate Brand Manager, Brand Manager, Senior Brand Manager
    The Gillette Company
  • 1980 - 1982
    Sales Representative
    Procter & Gamble