Home About Us Board of Directors Sara Vance Waddell

Sara Vance Waddell

President/CEO, SMV Media
Cincinnati, OH

Sara brings to the table over 30 years of Media Buying and Planning experience. The owner/president of SMV Media, a media management company, Vance has handled many local accounts including, The Cincinnati Art Museum, Newport on the Levee, The National Underground Railroad Freedom Center, Summerfair Cincinnati, and consults with several local advertising agencies. Her expertise also includes marketing and creative strategy.

Vance’s career began at Fahlgren in 1985 where she was responsible for media planning and buying for clients such as McDonalds Restaurants (Dayton, Lima, Columbus, South Carolina and Lexington), Donnelly Directory/Cincinnati Bell Yellow Pages, and RE/MAX (Cincinnati/Dayton). As Media Director at Krienik Advertising, she handled the Barleycorn’s Saloons and Riverboats, Subway Sandwiches, and Down Lite Intl., accounts. Other account experience includes Pizza Hut, Donato’s Pizza, Henry Fischer Builder and Meijer Stores. Vance began her media management company in 1994.

Sara attended Morehead State University, where she earned her Bachelor of Arts in Journalism, with an emphasis in public relations/advertising, graduating Cum Laude in 1984. She was a member of the Board Of Directors for the Advertising Club of Cincinnati from 1985-1992. Vance was the recipient of the “Rookie of the Year” in 1987. Sara has been inducted into the 1999 edition of Who’s Who of Entrepreneurs.

Sara was appointed by former Governor Ted Strickland to sit on the Ohio Arts Council Board (2010-2014), and she currently sits on the Carnegie Visual and Performing Arts Board, ArtWorks (Past President and board chair) and is a trustee emeritus, The Neuberger Museum of Art in New York, Ohio Citizens for the Arts, Arts Midwest, and Chaine-Mondiale and Cancer Family Care as past and present board chair. Her previous board commitments have included The Contemporary Art Center as vice president, Cincinnati Art Museum as Acquisitions Chair, Enjoy the Arts, The March of Dimes, The Ronald McDonald House Charities, Ensemble Theater of Cincinnati and Equality Cincinnati.

Vance has received the House Advocate Award in 2005 from the Ronald McDonald House, the Heart for the Arts Award in 2007 from Learning Through Art, the 2009 Champions for Children Award from 4C for Children, Justin Friedman Presidents Award from Cancer Family Care in 2011, and the Civic Leadership Award from Venue Magazine, Class of 2011. Selected Enquirer Woman of the Year, 2010.

Sara lives in Cincinnati, Ohio with her wife Michelle Vance Waddell and their 16 year old son with four paws, J.S. Bach. She also serves as a wine judge for the Cincinnati International Wine Festival, and is a member of Chaine Des Rotisseurs and L’Order Mondiale, a culinary arts and wine organization.

Sara has been a Board member since 2015.