CUAA Special Election 2015 for Alumni Trustees

Susan Berman


Architecture 1980
New York, NY

Current Position, Organization:
Principal, Managing Director, Underline Communications

Relevant Skills:

Business and marketing strategy, professional service firm operations and finance management, trustee of non-profit Women’s Venture Fund, entrepreneurship

Professional Qualifications:

Susan is a marketing agency executive and entrepreneur with strong strategic, creative problem solving, and business-building skills. Her experience includes serving Fortune 100 clients in banking, credit cards, wealth management, telecom, entertainment, retail, and travel, as well as non-profits. Susan has successfully founded and grown business ventures and served on the board of non-profit Women’s Venture Fund.

Having founded Underline Communications in 2001, as Principal and Managing Director, Susan oversees the agency’s client management, business development, and operations. An architect by training and a manager with 25 years of experience, she is responsible for ensuring client and team satisfaction and that Underline continually strives to push the boundaries of new ideas and technologies. Underline was sold to the Sandbox Group in 2015.

Personal Statement:

My connection to Cooper Union is uncommonly strong, given that both my parents and my sister attended the school. My parents attended the night school for art in the late 1940’s after fleeing Nazi Germany, and the school gave them their professional start. My sister Carrie graduated from the art school in graphic design. Cooper has been an important part of my life for as long as I can remember, and our family has always felt deep gratitude for the opportunities our Cooper education afforded us.

As for my professional experience, I was trained and worked as an architect for Richard Meier & Partners early in my career. I have used the rigor, critical thinking, and discipline I was taught to found, grow, and sell successful businesses, including BKLYN, a magazine for the non-profit Heart of Brooklyn and Underline Communications, a digital marketing agency. I believe that my strategic, creative problem solving, and business-building skills can be put to good use as an Alumni Board member and I look forward to being able to contribute as Cooper Union moves forward.

Additional Information:

  • I am a strategist and big-picture thinker
  • I like to find unconventional, creative solutions to problems
  • I am passionate about Cooper Union’s rich history and unique place in higher education