R. L. Turner Graduate Becomes World-Renowned Marketing Guru
Students who were enrolled during the "Golden Age" of the Academy for Media Arts and Technology during the early 2000s have graduated from the Carrollton-Farmers Branch Independent School District and have done great things in the world of media, film, television, communications, and technology. One of the most successful graduates is Forbes "30 Under 30" honoree Shama Hyder.
Graduating from R. L. Turner in 2003, Hyder has gone on to build the global marketing powerhouse company Zen Media and tours around the globe as a renowned speaker. She is a visionary strategist for the digital age, a web and TV personality, a bestselling author, and the award-winning CEO of Zen Media – a global marketing and digital PR firm.
Hyder has been named the "Zen Master of Marketing" by Entrepreneur Magazine and the "Millennial Master of the Universe" by FastCompany.com. Hyder has also been honored at both the White House and The United Nations as one of the country's top 100 young entrepreneurs.
Hyder is the bestselling author of The Zen of Social Media Marketing, now in its 4th edition, and Momentum: How to Propel Your Marketing and Transform Your Brand in the Digital Age. An acclaimed keynote speaker, Hyder has delivered keynotes in over 20 countries and spoken for recognized brands, including Movado, Chase, Tupperware, and Inc 5000.
As a result of her success, Hyder has been the recipient of numerous awards, including the prestigious Technology Titan Emerging Company CEO award. She was named one of the "Top 25 Entrepreneurs under 25" by Business Week in 2009, one of the "Top 30 Under 30" Entrepreneurs in America in 2014 by Inc. Magazine, and to the Forbes "30 Under 30" list of movers and shakers for 2015. LinkedIn has named Hyder one of their "Top Voices" in Marketing & Social Media for three years. She was recently given the "Global Empowerment award for Marketing and Technology" by Anokhi Media.
She credits her early success to Mike Seeley, a long-time educator in CFBISD. Hyder writes in her first book, The Zen of Social Media Marketing, "Michael Seeley (teacher) - Thank you for igniting my passion for technology. Your patience and compassion have always moved me." Seeley was part of the early years of AMAT, guiding students to success in and out of high school, including Hyder.
Hyder had an entrepreneurial spirit during her time at R. L. Turner High School. She would sell candy between classes to earn extra money and even created her own self-published magazines to share with her classmates.
After leaving R. L. Turner and the AMAT Academy, Hyder attended the University of Texas at Austin and wrote her master's thesis on Twitter. A time when Twitter only had 2,000 users. As an early adopter of social media, Hyder graduated college at the age of 22 and immediately started her company Zen Media. She surpassed $1 million in revenue in the first three years, consulting with companies on social media's emerging world.
As the CEO of Zen Media, she and her team help both B2B and B2C brands to make meaningful connections with the modern-day customer via influencer marketing, experiential and digital storytelling — and then turning those into bottom-line results. Notable clients include Chase Business, The US Navy, DFW Airport, MaryKay, and Tupperware.
In addition to graduating from R. L. Turner High School, Hyder also attended Janie Stark Elementary, Field Middle School, and Blalack Middle School while in CFBISD.
Zen Media has offices in Dallas and Miami. Learn about Hyder & her company