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Cheryl Swanson


Cheryl is an anthropologist by training and a brand strategist through experience.


In the 90’s, she developed the innovation of visual positioning, a strategic approach to branding which aligns communications through image and archetype in addition to words, so that all a brand’s stakeholders are dedicated to a common visual language. This approach has been perfected at TONIQ, which she founded 13 years ago, and has proved successful in the creation of brands for Gillette such as Mach3, Venus, and Fusion and the repositioning of existing brands such as Diet Pepsi, several brands for ConAgra, Saks Fifth Avenue, Ralph Lauren and KRAFT (DiGiorno, Jell-O, Polly-O, Philly, Kraft CMG and future studies in the area of “fresh”).


She is the co-chair of the annual FUSE conference on culture & design, is the President of AIGA Metro-North and speaks around the world on branding.

The curriculum for The Masters in Branding Program allows students to create frameworks to guide brand, design and business development, critically evaluate brand, business, marketing and design strategies and Master the intellectual link between leadership and creativity. Learn more...


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Debbie Millman
Chair, Co-founder


Emily Weiland

Director of Operations, Graduate Advisor


Steven Heller
Co-founder, Faculty Advisor