Angela Zepeda, the first woman Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) of Hyundai Motors America, has become a mentor and an inspiration for women who aspire to follow in her footsteps and take leadership roles within their industry.

Do you want to know more about Angela’s life and her professional success? Read her story below and find out how our lives can lead us in directions we never expected but are exactly where we are supposed to be.

Woman Leaders: The Angela Zepada Story

We participated in a live meeting with Angela to learn more about her life, and listen to her advice on success. She told us her uplifting story from her house in southern California, where she’s been spending her quarantine with her family along the coast.

Since childhood, Angela always considered herself to be a creative person. As a teenager, she often told her family and friends that she dreamt of studying fashion. She told us she always had a love for art and fashion, and that she really hoped to go to New York and study.

Her family wasn’t satisfied with her choice, and they wanted her to stay and study at a university close to home. After some discussions with her friends, she decided she would go to California State University – Fullerton in the communications field, even if she was disappointed she would not become a fashion designer in New York as she had always dreamt.  She said: “I always dreamt to do something more with my education”.

After graduating and working in a famous and reputed marketing communications agency, Campbell Ewald, she decided to go back to school. She didn’t just stop there, she wanted to learn how to master her newfound passion: “I was realizing that all of our clients around the table and potential new clients were educated with an MBA. It was extremely hard and yes, it was expensive, but it was one of the most transforming things I ever did to invest in my life”.

If someone would have told her then that she would become the CMO at a global automobile manufacturer, she probably wouldn’t have believed it,  but Angela Zepeda had the potential, the motivation, and great background experience that would help her reach the top.

While working at Innocean, an advertising agency and an extension of Hyundai’s marketing team, Angela worked closely with the previous Hyundai CMO and with the marketing team on all Hyundai advertising. Suddenly, after the resignation of the Hyundai CMO, some luck but mostly her dynamism and her professionalism, led her to a new position in one of the world’s largest automotive companies as Hyundai’s newest Chief Marketing Officer. And the rest is history!

Today, Angela Zepada is one of the first female chief marketing officers in the automobile industry and the first one in Hyundai. She is an incredible and talented woman who inspires many young women with her professional and personal life. This year, COVID-19 showed her another side of the business. And, like many, she has seen her work and the company’s plans for the past months shatter, but she was able to find solutions to the health crisis and rise above it. 


Angela Zepada is a driven woman with the skills, the leadership, and the knowledge to mentor anyone she comes into contact with. She is an example to many women and girls who want to follow their dreams and learn throughout their lives, even if the road leads them on a different path than the one they had originally set out for themselves. Her story is one of resilience, strength, creativity, and commitment and it can inspire us all to reach further and always walk the extra mile.