DeLu Jackson

DeLu Jackson

In this episode, Lonny speaks with DeLu Jackson, Vice President of Precision Marketing at Conagra Brands. DeLu leads the company’s marketing transformation and demand acceleration through increased data intelligence, agility, always-on content and dynamic measurement. He is responsible for various facets of integrated marketing for the organization, including design, advertising, media, e-commerce, agile content and consumer data.

DeLu has over 20 years of marketing experience with well-known consumer brands. Prior to joining Conagra Brands, he was vice president of digital acceleration for Kellogg Company and previously served as corporate vice president of global marketing at McDonald's Corporation where he led marketing, social media and customer engagement. DeLu has also served in leadership roles in marketing for Nissan, Audi, Subaru and Ford.


He grew up in Dallas and has lived in Princeton, NJ, St. Louis, Kansas City, New York City, Detroit, Philadelphia, Tokyo and now Chicago. He has been married to Anna for 13 years and has two daughters, Mia (12) and Harper (8), and one son, Nikko (5).

Matthew Lalin

Matthew Lalin

This week's episode features Matthew Lalin, founder of starpower, an entertainment marketing agency that connects brands with entertainment, sport, music, fashion, beauty talent, influencers and content.

Matt launched starpower from the ground up with his long time colleague and friend Jared Weiss. By leveraging his extensive network of relationships, Matt created a trustworthy, dynamic and unique entertainment marketing agency that “flipped” the model on its head. After graduating from the University of Albany business school in 1998, Matt began his marketing career at Omnicom Group’s Steiner Sports where he rose to Executive Vice President before leaving in 2007 to launch starpower. with offices in New York and Los Angeles, starpower has global capabilities and is a trusted advisor to best in class brands and their partners in the U.S., U.K., Europe, Africa, Latin America and Asia Pacific.

Matt has conceived, negotiated and executed marketing campaigns for a world class roster of brands including Colgate-Palmolive, Diageo, Novo Nordisk, Nestle Waters, Bayer and JDRF. His over 15 years of experience, unwavering loyalty to his clients and his intuitive negotiation abilities have resulted in over 200mm worth of entertainment, music and sport partnerships.

Starpower is built on matthew’s passion for creating an innovative and fun agency culture which is based on loyalty, trust and a strong work ethic. Matt’s work hard, play hard philosophy drives starpower in both the boardroom and behind the scenes. This is evident by his far-reaching network which he views as friends and family at the top level of business, entertainment, music and sport.

Matt was a keynote speaker at the WTA Tour conference where he discussed “monetizing your personal brand” and has also counseled Hunter College students on entertainment marketing. He is highly respected in the industry and has been widely quoted and referenced in the Wall Street Journal, Brandweek, Sports Illustrated, Sports Business Journal as well as on CNBC, CNN and ESPN.

Matt is equally passionate about life outside of work. Whether he is reading with his children, Scarlett and Mason, or engaging in entrepreneurial discussions with his wife Stephanie, who is an accomplished jewelry designer and founder of Jemma Wynne, Matt is a devoted family man. He is a board member of the JLS Foundation and also has a personal affiliation with breast cancer organizations.

Peter Flesvig

Peter Flesvig

Lonny interviews Peter Flesvig, GM, The Culinary Group at Intersport. Peter leads Intersport’s culinary activation platform, inclusive of a multi-year partnership with the James Beard Foundation. Prior to Intersport, Peter’s career included a diverse set of consulting, strategy and sales roles in the CPG industry. Notably, that experience included 15+ years in sales and strategy with PepsiCo where he held executive leadership roles leading multiple customer teams. Peter is a graduate of DePaul University and resides in Chicago.

Jeff Fernandez

Jeff Fernandez

In this episode Lonny speaks with Jeff Fernandez, VP Corporate Partnerships and New Business Ventures with the New York Jets. In his 15th year with the Jets, Jeff is responsible for leading the partnership sales team that creates strategic corporate alliances, driving revenue for the organization and developing new business ventures and innovative projects that enhance Jets fan engagement. 

Fernandez previously served as director of marketing partnerships for the Buffalo Bills from 1999-2001 and at Huizenga Sports & Entertainment Group in Ft. Lauderdale, FL, from 1995-99, where he sold sponsorships for the Miami Dolphins, Florida Panthers, Florida Marlins and SportsChannel Florida. Fernandez also served as vice president of marketing partnerships for Indianapolis Motor Speedway and the Indy 500 from 2001-03. 

Welcome to Food Connected!

Food Connected is an interview-style podcast hosted by Lonny Sweet, CEO of The Connect Group. Lonny will speak with executives on the brand, agency and influencer side who are leading the charge within the culinary marketing vertical to provide an in-depth look at how these talented individuals are leveraging the food connected consumer passion to drive their brand’s sales and marketing objectives forward.