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National Geographic Leadership

Kaitlin Yarnall

Senior Vice President and Chief Storytelling Officer

Picture of Kaitlin Yarnall

Photograph by Mark Thiessen/National Geographic

As senior vice president and chief storytelling officer at the National Geographic Society, Kaitlin Yarnall is responsible for expanding the organization’s impact through all forms of storytelling, including photography, journalism, film, and public experiences. Yarnall oversees a creative team that produces impact-driven media and identifies key partnership, grantmaking, and fellowship opportunities with creative talent to further amplify the Society’s mission. 

Over the course of her career at National Geographic, Yarnall has assumed a variety of management roles including deputy director of National Geographic Labs, executive director and deputy creative director at National Geographic magazine, and director of cartography. She began her career at the National Geographic Society in 2005 as a cartographer.

Yarnall has been a keynote speaker at conferences around the globe and has addressed the UN General Assembly, Scandinavian royals, and rock concert stadiums. She specializes in storytelling, data visualization, information graphics, cartography, and visual narratives, and has written extensively on these subjects.

She sits on the board of directors for Media Impact Funders.

Yarnall earned an M.A. in geography from the George Washington University and a B.A. in geography and Spanish literature from Humboldt State University.