Katherine Barna has led communications at Tumblr for more than three years. Before that, she was a publicist at Newsweek and held stints at XM Satellite Radio and Cohn Dutcher Associates. At Tumblr, she has overseen PR efforts for the popular blogging platform from its days as a scrappy New York startup to its $1.1 billion acquisition by Yahoo last year. Tumblr, with its fast-growing user base, proved an attractive prospect for Yahoo as the struggling Internet giant attempted to reinvent itself.
In the year since the acquisition, Tumblr more than doubled its staff and grew its audience by 22%, but the company has not yet solved the revenue growth puzzle. In this new era of Tumblr, Barna and her colleagues must prove the business has what it takes to succeed in the big leagues, while staying true to its indie roots and maintaining its appeal to legions of loyal users.