PR News from Interpublic and PMK*BNC, Mercury, Levick, and Ruder Finn

PMK*BNC and Other Interpublic Group Companies Lose Power for a Day


On Wednesday, August 31st, Interpublic Group, a communications holding company, suffered a server outage, shutting down communications in their various companies for a full day. This included PMK*BNC‘s many publicists in the Hollywood area. It was not reported how many other Interpublic PR firms were affected, but they have 50,000 employees among them. Some of those other PR firms include Golin-Harris, Spong, Weber Shandwick, and Frank About Women.

In response to the problem, PMK*BNC’s CEO and Chairman, Cindi Berger, said: “I need the industry to know there has been a global server problem. It’s been an epic headache for our publicists and not a pretty picture. The global operations manager, based in Omaha, has been trying to fix this. I have been assured that emails will be up within the next couple of hours.”

Drew Olanoff Joins Mercury’s San Francisco Office as a Sr. VP

Mercury Public Affairs

Drew Olanoff, a veteran of Silicon Valley work, will now be working at Mercury PR’s SF office and reporting to one of the partners, Fabian Nuñez. Mercury is under the Omnicom corporate umbrella.

Olanoff started the end of August and will be working with tech sector clients as well as expanding the firm’s digital and tech practices. Olanoff’s experience will add to the firm in virtual reality, social media, and augmented reality. He left a job at Rothenberg Ventures as their global communications leader but has also worked at River Studios, EyeEm, and Yahoo doing in-house communications in the past Olanoff also contributed articles to TechCrunch and The Next Web in the past.

Levick Brings Another Exec to Their Staff

Levick Communications

Kathryn DeVito moves from FleishmanHillard’s DC office to Levick’s DC office as their new head of digital and SVP. She was a partner and SVP at FH previously, spending nine years there starting in their Los Angeles office before moving to DC. There she oversaw digital projects, worked to bring in new business, and counseled clients on how to get what they wanted from their campaigns.

Other past employers include APCO Worldwide as well as MacNeil/Lehrer Productions where she worked as a journalist. Richard Levick, Levick’s CEO, hired her for her deep social and digital expertise.

Mary Coyle, Healthcare PR Expert, Joins Ruder Finn

Ruder Finn Public Relations

Ruder Finn has brought in Mary Coyle as a media relations strategist in the healthcare practice and senior VP. She’s been working in the healthcare PR sector at Marina Maher most recently, but before that, she was at Ogilvy, W2O Group, TogoRun, and spent nearly 13 years at MSLGroup.

Coyle will report to Sally Barton, RF’s healthcare operation leader. Barton indicated she’s known Coyle for many years and said Coyle is one “who deeply understands the intersection of the health and consumer practices.”

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