CIARA Smyth is executive vice president and chief human Resources Officer for Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company in New York. Smyth was born in Dublin, and has been instrumental in the growth of HMH (formerly Riverdeep) in the past decade. Under her stewardship, HMH has transformed its talent agenda through a strategic and focused approach to realizing employee potential at all levels of the organization.
With Cap Gemini she is a founding member and cochair of an industry network group for women in media and publishing, a quarterly forum focused on developing women leaders within the industry. She is also the founder and executive sponsor of the Women’s Leadership Program at HMH.
Upon graduation from University College Dublin and the University of Essex in the U.K., Smyth emigrated to the U.S. in 1994.
“I had the privilege for the past 11 years of working for an indigenous Irish company which has successfully established itself in the U.S. and globally,” says Smyth, who visits Ireland six times a year for work and pleasure and says that her Irish heritage has contributed to her success.
“I also feel I am a product of Ireland and that my professional success has been made possible because of the education and upbringing I received in Ireland,” she says. Smyth champions several Irish humanitarian causes abroad.
She is a board member of Self Help Africa, an Irish development agency that aims to help Africans become self-sufficient through long-term development programs. She is also an advisory board member to Goal USA, the U.S. arm of the Irish humanitarian agency Goal. This is the second year Smyth has made the list of the Irish Voice’s Most Influential Women.
“It’s an honor to be listed again with such amazingly talented Irish and Irish American women,” she says.
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