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CEO of Whistle Express car wash Jose Costa chosen as IMC convocation speaker

Ceremony will take place Dec. 9

Class of 2023 Medill Convocation Speaker Jose R. Costa (IMC04).

EVANSTON, ILL. -- Jose R. Costa (IMC04), CEO of Whistle Express car wash and managing partner for LVN Capital Group, will address the Integrated Marketing Communications master’s graduates and their families at Medill’s convocation ceremony Dec. 9. 

Costa brings his long track record of creating corporate value and leading large, multi-unit retail organizations to his current CEO role. He also is a board member of Lightbridge Academy, member of Young Presidents’ Organization, and author of Leading With Edge, a book on sharpening personal competitive advantage.  

“It’s a pleasure to welcome Jose back to campus,” said Medill Dean Charles Whitaker. “His career exemplifies the diverse paths our alumni have successfully taken and proves there’s no limit to what our graduates will be able to achieve.” 

Costa held several leadership roles prior to joining Whistle Express, including Burger King, where he was vice president of marketing, R&D and supply chain and oversaw marketing efforts to 32 culturally distinct countries. At 35, Costa became president of Maaco, an automotive services chain, where he pushed the company’s marketing efforts beyond the Yellow Pages and into the digital, social and mobile worlds. He went on to lead optical retailer Grand Vision as CEO and Bojangles’ Restaurants as Chief Growth Officer. 

Student Speakers

In addition to Costa, two Medill students also will be speaking at convocation.  

Layth Yehyawi (IMC23)

layth-yehyawiLayth Yehyawi was an IMC Professional graduate student ambassador and is a manager of marketing analytics, performance & insights and the strategic analyst to the CMO at Gallagher, a global Chicago-based insurance brokerage. 

Ria Parab (IMC23)

ria-parabRia Parab, an IMC full-time student, specialized in the brand, media, and data sequences, and served on the executive board of Medill's Cause Marketing Initiative.

The convocation ceremony will start at 10 a.m. at Pick-Staiger Concert Hall and will be livestreamed and recorded for later viewing.