Managing Director, Research


Jess Neumann-Kersten (she/her) is the managing director of research at RW Jones and also manages Rankin Climate’s research projects. Using years of experience in research, Jess supports clients through evidence-based practices and mixed-methods research, helping them answer their most pressing questions related to market viability, brand perception and alignment, and strategic communications.

In her research work, Jess and her team have collaborated on a tuition transparency study with Bridgewater College and developed, fielded and analyzed the inaugural State of the CDO survey and report with the National Association of Diversity Officers in Higher Education (NADOHE). Jess also supervises the agency’s project managers and supports the Vice President of Strategy with improving business operations across the company.

Jess earned her Ph.D. in communication studies from the University of Denver, with a research focus on new media and the forms of labor female fashion and lifestyle bloggers engage in. She earned her bachelor’s degree in media, culture and communication, and gender and sexuality studies from New York University.

Before joining RW Jones, Jess spent 15 years at the University of Denver working closely with administration at the Sturm College of Law, developing the Office of Academic Innovation with the university’s CIO, and building a robust Online Program Services division within the Office of Graduate Education. She developed a passion for program development and preparing career-ready graduates through cross-disciplinary and experiential learning opportunities.

Jess, her husband, Peter, and her pup, Midge, live outside Boulder, Colorado.