Glenn Harston: 40 Under 40 2014

President, The Gemini Group
Age: 39

Glenn Harston is a force to be reckoned with. That is the unanimous opinion of his colleagues at The Gemini Group, a Chicago-based integrated communications and PR firm with strong community ties and a focus on black and young urban consumer markets.

Its energetic team has contributed to the success of many high-profile brands, companies, people, and organizations, including Barack Obama’s Illinois state and US Senate campaigns.

Other clients Harston has counseled include the Chicago Cubs, City of Chicago, Hennessy Cognac, Los Angeles Dodgers, Illinois Department of Transportation, Miller Brewing Co., McDonald’s, and Wendy’s.

Known for his impressive work ethic and professionalism, he has an unfaltering ability to champion his clients’ needs and draw attention to their brands and causes.

Before Gemini, he was community affairs manager at railroad company Metra, which provides rail services in Chicago via 11 lines serving 230 stations.

Harston has also worked at Ketchum and for R.J. Dale Advertising and Public Relations, one of the nation’s most highly regarded minority-owned PR firms.

His achievements have been recognized with numerous accolades for him and his agency. Harston was named Businessman of the Year by the African American Contractors Association, while Gemini won Startup Business of the Year from Black Contractors United.

In addition, he was named the Coalition for Community Action’s Man of the Year and gained the Rainbow Push Coalition’s Men of Honor Award.

Harston is respected by clients and colleagues alike. According to his Gemini Group colleague Michael Bailey, "Glenn is one of the best strategic minds, crisis managers, and most influential people I have come across."

"He knows and has counseled everyone from global icons to major league sports owners," explains Bailey. "He knows everyone and, more importantly, they know him, which makes him the quintessential communications professional."

 

• Harston has some illustrious family connections. His father – Glenn Harston Sr. – was a close friend of Chicago mayor Harold Washington and is often seen in the company of Rev. Jesse Jackson

• He is vice chairman of the Bailey Boy Artist Development and Education Foundation

• Harston is a volunteer mentor and tutor at Perspectives Charter Schools and a volunteer at Project SYNCERE (Supporting Youth’s Needs with Core Engineering Research Experiments)

• He is a member of the NAACP and the National Association of Black Businesses

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