Matthew D. Bennett, SPA/BA ’00 and SPA/MA ’01, is American University’s vice president and chief communications officer. Before joining AU, Matt was executive vice president, global communications at the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA). He served on the senior leadership team and led MPAA’s worldwide communications enterprise, providing strategic counsel and support to the organization’s policy, legal, and content protection operations. He managed the announcement of the MPAA's new chairman and chief executive officer and the addition of MPAA's first new member in decades, oversaw the 50th anniversary celebration of the iconic MPAA movie ratings, and transformed the organization's digital operation.
Prior to joining MPAA in 2016, Matt was senior vice president and managing director of the District of Columbia office for Racepoint Global, an international public relations firm. He previously served as senior vice president of communications and public affairs for the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA), where he led all internal and external communications and conducted a comprehensive rebranding effort for the association. Matt also held senior positions at GolinHarris (now Golin), leading major client relationships including Kaiser Permanente and Olympus for the global PR agency.
With 20 years of experience in strategic communications, issues management, and brand development, Bennett has designed and implemented comprehensive campaigns focused on advancing business and policy priorities, developing thought leadership platforms, and building trusted connections with influencers and key audiences.
Bennett received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in political science from American University. He lives in Virginia with his wife and daughter.