The Human Revolution
 

The Human Revolution

Pinterest Chief Content Officer Malik Ducard ’91 challenges the Class of 2024 to be "heroes for humanity."


From humble beginnings to his current role as the chief content officer at Pinterest, the journey of this year's Commencement speaker, Malik Ducard, is a testament to the transformative power of a Pomfret education. “I always take this school’s spirit with me,” he said. “Graduates, I know you’ll feel the same in your next chapter. And you’ll rely on this spirit often, especially as you navigate today’s world." 

As a child growing up in the Bronx, Ducard loved football, baseball, and board games. But storytelling was his true passion. As a teen, he was selected to attend Pomfret by A Better Chance Program, a non-profit that finds and places high-performing students of color in top schools. On the Hilltop, he remembers spending countless hours lugging around film equipment, all the while learning how to tell stories through the lens of a camera.

After graduating from Pomfret in 1991, Ducard went on to earn a BA in Film and African American Studies from Columbia and an MBA from UCLA’s Anderson School of Management. After a brief stint as an account executive with the New York-based marketing firm Young & Rubicam, Ducard took a job on the West Coast at Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) in the home entertainment acquisitions and business development division. Later, he worked at Lions Gate Entertainment, before eventually moving to Paramount Pictures as the senior vice president of digital distribution.

Malik Ducard ’91 at Pomfret's 130th Commencement Ceremony. 

In 2011, Ducard left Paramount to join YouTube. During his decade with the company, he served as the global head of family and learning and the vice president of content partnerships. Then, in November 2021, Ducard was named Pinterest’s first chief content officer. Since taking the reins, he has worked tirelessly to make the image-sharing juggernaut a force for social good. “Inspiration is a universal need,” he says. “At Pinterest, we are building an ecosystem of the most inspiring content and stories from the most inspiring people around the world.”

During his address, Ducard challenged the Class of 2024 to lead the human revolution. “Champion feelings like pride, empathy, passion, nostalgia, and love that are swirling here today and values like fairness, opportunity, and community that can never be automated. Be heroes for humanity,” he said. 

Ducard suggested three lessons for leading the human revolution. The first lesson is to be yourself. “Don’t fit in. Don't go along to get along. Be your own drumbeat. Be the signal in the noise,” Ducard shared. “Because all of you bring to this world gifts that are unique and your own. Show them, cherish them, celebrate them.”

The second and third lessons Ducard shared go hand in hand. He asked the class to work together and build coalitions to improve the world for all humanity. By building authentic connections offline, working toward solutions that benefit all parties, and giving everyone a voice, he believes that the Class of 2024 can change the world. 

“I know it’s a lot to ask a group of teenagers to lead a human revolution. But I wouldn’t do it if I didn’t know you were capable,” parted Ducard. “We need smart people like you with your keen eye, principles, and belief in a greater good to leverage powerful technology for good. YOU will be the difference — the ultimate guide for us as a society.”
 

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