PR News from Podesta — APCO, Global Strategy Group, Makovsky, and Porter Novelli

Updates from Podesta / Clinton Emails about Former APCO Employee Beth Jones

APCO Worldwide NY PR

In 2009, there was email discussion between Hillary Clinton and Secretary of Defense Robert Gates regarding a possible appointment as Ambassador to Iraq. The candidate being discussed was Beth Jones, who Clinton emphatically endorsed for the position. At the time, Jones worked at both APCO Worldwide as an Executive VP and as a partner of the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI). APCO, then and now, gives free PR work for the CGI and they have many other connections to Hillary Clinton.

APCO is also a contributor to the Clinton Foundation, with as much as $50,000 in donations in addition to their efforts for Clinton in various guises for eight or more years. Various people at APCO have worked for either Bill or Hillary in some capacity including Lisa Osborn Ross, serving in Bill’s administration during both Presidential terms, and Mark Medis, a former special assistant to Bill when he was President. Huma Abedin is also connected to Teneo PR, another PR firm strongly supporting the Clinton campaign.

Global Strategy Group Hires Will Dunn as Vice President

Will Dunn joins Global Strategy Group (GSG) after leaving Hill+Knowlton’s London office, where he has worked since 2014 as an associate director. He will fill the role of VP and put his efforts in public affairs and communications campaigns for the agency’s clients. He’ll be working out of the New York headquarters for GSG. GSG’s 2015 net fees amounted to more than $31 million.

Dunn’s experience also includes time working at the Chicago office of WPP, and at Public Strategies Inc. in both their Chicago and Washington offices as a director. Public Strategies later merged with Hill+Knowlton in 2010.

Makovsky Loses Denise Vitola as She Launches New Firm

Denise Vitola is no stranger to working for PR firms, her most recent post as managing director at New York consultancy Makovsky. She’s also worked at MSLGroup in the personal care division as a deputy director and then later as practice director, moving up in 2012 to the Atlanta office as deputy managing director. Before MSLGroup, she also worked at both Ogilvy PR and MWWPR.

She’ll work at Makovsky until November 10th; then she’ll open Vitola Strategies, a boutique PR firm working mainly with health and wellness brands doing PR, communications, consumer research, influencer relations, branding, social media, messaging, and brand development.

Porter Novelli Adding New Staff

The North American offices of Porter Novelli are adding strength to their leadership bringing in three new executive staff members in Julie Schumacher Ciardiello, as the New York office’s managing director; Bruce Ginsberg, Sr. VP of business development; and Peter DiBart, creative director. Schumacher replaced Erin Osher to lead tech, consumer, food, health and wellness, and corporate communications. Ginsberg will oversee new business development creating opportunities for innovation and growth. DiBart’s creative team will focus on development and production, advertising, brand identity and expression, content strategy, design, and experiential marketing.

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