Vice President, Strategic Communications & Marketing, International Franchise Association


Bill Meierling is a creative and innovative strategist entrusted by high profile leaders and organizations to direct issue campaigns, lead message development and manage crisis planning and response while driving transformational change and delivering global business results. He has led public affairs, political and marketing campaigns at every level—U.S. local, state and federal, and internationally on four continents.

For the International Franchise Association, Bill leads organization-wide communications and marketing strategy to expand awareness of the franchising system as a pathway to opportunity.

From 2013-2021, Bill led communications, marketing and legislator engagement for the American Legislative Exchange Council, the nation’s largest voluntary member association of pro-business state legislators and local decisionmakers.

Previously, Bill spent nearly a decade managing multicultural community relations and international expansion strategies for United Way Worldwide and Edelman Public Relations clients.

At United Way, Bill was the first worldwide head of public relations for the 41-country, 1,800-chapter organization ranked by Forbes 26th most valuable global brand (behind Verizon and ahead of Nintendo).

For Edelman Public Relations, Bill led multicultural engagement campaigns and community initiatives for Fortune 50 companies and several leading U.S. trade associations in the consumer, energy, technology, and healthcare sectors.

Prior to Edelman, Bill was a founding partner in OpinionMakers International, a boutique public relations and campaign consultancy focused on Latin-American and Sub-Saharan African issues.

From 2010 – 2016, Bill taught state government affairs, issue and crisis management and multicultural communication at the George Washington University Graduate School of Political Management. An avid writer, Bill’s work has been published in The Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, The Chicago Tribune, and The Hill, among other leading outlets.

When not communicating the opportunities provided by the franchising system, Bill spends time in his victory garden where he grows 11 types of tomatoes, cucumbers for pickling and any number of other herbs and vegetables. He is also often found next to his Weber Bullet smoking pork shoulder or house-cured bacon.

Bill’s BBQ Rub

1/2 cup paprika
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup kosher salt
1/3 cup black pepper
1/6 cup garlic powder
1 tablespoon ground cumin