Our People: Cora Conklin Defines "Truth" in New Role at Constellation Brands

Cora Conklin is vice president of the newly created Data Management Organization (DMO) at Constellation Brands. Cora is passionate about the DMO’s work and how it is revving up to make big impacts on Constellation’s future. Shelives in the world of data and understands both its power and extraordinary value to our business.

The DMO is standardizing the way we identify and use data across the company, creating a sole source of “truth” — a common language we can all use and understand. As with most businesses that have grown through acquisition, we have inherited many different names for the same assets. What corporate might define as a 750mL bottle, a winery might define as a Bordeaux bottle, and an operations facility might call a high shoulder bottle. We all mean the same thing but if we’re trying to get a sense of inventory totals, current vendors, or costs, we would have a difficult time trying to account for everything. This is where the DMO is stepping in. Every asset, every item, every element and data field is going to be given one identity across the entire business.

Cora explains, “This work creates a single sphere of data. And once we have that data clearly defined, we can more quickly pivot as an organization, adapting to changing market requirements and business priorities. We will also be able to run mock scenarios, providing better visibility into potential downstream impacts before they occur. The work we’re undertaking now to standardize our data will absolutely have bottom-line impacts to our business.”

The DMO’s work will eliminate a lot of redundancies and silos that currently exist, and it will deliver an expanded scope of accurate and consistent data back to the business. The team will provide data that can be openly shared and applied across all facets of our business – a true total beverage alcohol approach.

At Constellation, we are not shying away from making bold investments in our own future. We believe we yet have untapped potential and we have the capabilities at hand to take Constellation to the next level of success. The DMO enables us to get there. Cora understands the criticality of her role. When asked what excites her most about leading this new team, she said, “We’re solving business problems and isolating key data elements necessary to achieve the growth we’re seeking.

Our CFO David Klein is championing the DMO’s efforts. He understands the intricate partnership necessary between the DMO and IT and so the DMO reports into our chief information officer to encourage this close collaboration. Cora has the perfect background to capitalize on this and Constellation’s CIO Dawn DePerrior agrees. “Partnership and open communication will be crucial for the long-term success of this endeavor. Cora thinks holistically and understands that IT’s success will enable the DMO’s success and ultimately, the company’s success. The work we’re setting out to do will be truly transformational.”

Cora began her career with Constellation in 2005 as the Manager of External Reporting. From the very beginning, Cora showed her aptitude for standardization, compliance, transparency and data quality. With her thoughtful leadership, extensive business knowledge and deep company relationships, this new organization is certainly poised for great success.