Chipotle’s “Brand Voice” to Speak at Wilson Lecture in Business Economics

William Espey to present “Maintaining Business Integrity When Things Don’t Go Right” at The College of Wooster.

October 23, 2018   /  

Event Details

October 03, 2018 - 7:00 p.m.
Wilson Governance Room of the Scot Center

WOOSTER, Ohio — William Espey, the “brand voice” of Chipotle Mexican Grill, will present “Maintaining Business Integrity When Things Don’t Go Right” at the James R. Wilson Lecture in Business Economics on Wednesday, Oct. 3, at The College of Wooster. The lecture, which is free and open to the public, will begin at 7 p.m. in the Wilson Governance Room of the Scot Center (1267 Beall Ave.). A dessert reception will follow.

William Espey Chipotle

Espey, the driving force responsible for developing Chipotle’s unique brand voice, will discuss how things look easy when everything goes according to plan, but the real test of an organization is how it handles adversity and learns from it. At Chipotle, the E. coli scare drove the firm to improve and to communicate with its customers more effectively, benefiting both in the process.

As its sole marketing employee when Chipotle had less than 20 locations, Espey has helped it flourish to over 2,000 restaurants in the U.S. and abroad. He earned a bachelor’s degree from Bowdoin College and was named one of “The 24 Most Creative People in Advertising” by Business Insider in 2013.

“The ‘Wilson Series’ is designed to bring people to campus who are doers, rather than simply analysts or pundits. Everyone likes to talk about things that go well, but Espey was attractive because he can talk about dealing with adversity effectively,” remarked John Sell, professor of business economics at Wooster.

Sell also noted that “’Wilson visits’ always bring students direct contact with the speakers.” Espey will remain on campus for part of Thursday, Oct. 4, attending a marketing class, taught by Joe Histen, and meeting with select students in Wooster’s center for Advising, Planning, and Experiential Learning (APEX).

The James R. Wilson Lecture Series in Business Economics brings business and financial leaders to Wooster’s campus to share their insights with students, faculty, and the broader community. The series is supported by the James R. Wilson Fund for Business Economics, which was established in 2001 through a gift from James and Linda Wilson. Previous speakers in the series include Robbie Bach, former senior executive at Microsoft; Howard Putnam, CEO of Southwest Airlines; Donald Kohn, vice chairman of the Federal Reserve; Michelle Stacy, former president of Keurig, Inc.; Marshall Larsen, CEO of Goodrich; Walt Bettinger, CEO of Charles Schwab; and Craig Barrett, CEO of Intel.

Additional information about the lecture is available by phone (330-263-2302) or email (