Orlena Nwokah Blanchard

Orlena Nwokah Blanchard (’90) is an award-winning entrepreneur and innovative leader behind game-changing social impact movements and marketing programs for some of the world’s biggest brands. She is an astute cultural marketing strategist and one of the chief architects of the CROWN Act (Creating a Respectful and Open World for Natural Hair) movement to end race-based hair discrimination. She has been featured in numerous publications including Cosmopolitan, The Root, Ebony Magazine, 21 Ninety, and on podcasts like Potential to Powerhouse and Heads Talk. Nwokah Blanchard is the founder and managing partner of Seven Elements Group, a culture first strategy and marketing company that supports brands in building their cultural muscle and designing inclusive business strategies that drive growth and social impact. Her newest venture, WonderTree Skin, is a transformative beauty and wellness company harnessing the power of Moringa, to help drive skincare equity for Black women.

Nwokah Blanchard is the former co-owner of JOY Collective, an award-winning cultural insights marketing and creative agency she spent nearly a decade building into a nationally recognized brand named on the 2022 Inc. 5000 list of most successful and fastest growing companies in America. She has developed cultural marketing strategies for brands like the United States Naval Academy, Dove, Dove Men+Care, ESPN, BET Networks, OWN, WW, Tory Burch, Prudential, SheaMoisture, Google Fiber, and many more.

Nwokah Blanchard earned a BS in Industrial Engineering from Purdue University (1994) where she was awarded a Key Bank academic scholarship and NSF Research Fellowship in parallel processing.  She went on to receive an MBA from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania (2000) where she was on the executive board of Wharton African Students Association and was Co-chair of the inaugural WASA student Conference.

While at WLHS Nwokah Blanchard was a cheerleader, a member of VISTA, and the Pep Club all four of her high school years.  Other activities included Varsity Club and gymnastics.  Her senior year she was Homecoming Chair, a commencement committee member, and a member of the basketball homecoming court.

Nwokah Blanchard remembers her WLHS teachers as being “amazing,” particularly Mr. Meister, Mr. Meister, who recognized and celebrated her multinational background.