PR Happenings From Carmichael Lynch, Ruder Finn, Rubenstein Communications, and Bell Pottinger
New President at Carmichael Lynch From Among the Ranks
Julie Batliner, top PR executive and managing partner of Carmichael Lynch, one of Interpublic’s agencies, has been promoted to President following the promotion of the previous president, Marcus Fisher after he was named CEO. She’ll continue with her current responsibilities, including her role as managing partner. Batliner has been with the agency for nearly 10 years, and she’s been doing a bang-up job recently, seeing a rise in revenues by 47% this last year and an increase of more than 50% in staff.
In a statement released from the agency, they indicated that Batliner’s promotion shows their commitment to clients – giving them a “fully integrated offering.” She will be in charge of the creative agency and PR efforts in direction and leadership. The agency statement also said Batliner’s “commitment to collaboration and evolving our offerings has been key to our success. Her ability to orchestrate cross-discipline campaigns is unsurpassed.”
Nicole Pariser Hired to Lead Newly Launched Health Care Practice from Ruder Finn
Ruder Finn’s internal incubator group, Bloom, will hold the new health care practice called Bloom Health (BH). BH will be led by Nicole Pariser as its senior VP of health tech. The new practice will work on consumer communications for health tech organizations as well as B2B. Ruder hired Shelley Facius this month for their UK office as head of tech, and David Brooks last year for digital health. Pariser formerly served as global director of PR at Medidata Solutions, where she worked for four years. She also worked at Inventiv Health (corporate communications), Goldman Sachs (communications), and Pfizer (communications).
Howard Rubenstein Honored by Yankees
The annual team homecoming dinner this week honored Howard J. Rubenstein and his wife, as their long-time PR man with the Lifetime Achievement Award. Mrs. R – Amy, is also the owner of Peter Luger Steakhouse. Rubenstein, founder of Howard J. Rubenstein Associates that was founded in 1954, has been an active participant in New York’s behind-the-scenes politics and real estate as well as his legendary presence in public relations.
He and the Steinbrenner family – owners of the Yankees – have been associated in various endeavors for decades, doing what they could to make the City better and prosperous. Rubenstein has been “retired” for several years, but still continues to go to his office several times a week, and has kept an especially strong presence in some of his long-time clients such as Steinbrenner and the Yankees.
Gupta-Owned Oakbay Investments No Longer Repped by Bell Pottinger
Oakbay Investments hired Bell Pottinger (BP) about a year ago to help with PR issues they faced in South Africa. During March 2017, an anonymous report was issued regarding that representation, making allegations as to BP’s efforts to increase racial tensions and divisions in South Africa, and since that time, BP has been targeted in social media. The report that started these problems had no source or reference to prove the charges, leading BP to call the entire matter a smear campaign.
This week, BP released the news that they will no longer represent Oakbay, a company owned by the Gupta family. In their release, they explained that the smear campaign against BP had become enough of an issue that they can no longer represent their client effectively and so they must withdraw. BP believes the South African Communist Party (SACP) is fueling the social media backlash. But BP also made it plain that during their time representing Oakbay, they’ve seen nothing to indicate wrong-doing.