PR Happenings from the U.S. Government, Huntsworth, 5WPR, and Hill+Knowlton
President Obama Adds Hundreds of PR Specialists to Payroll
The U.S. Government already spends more than $100 million each year hiring PR consultants and firms. It also spent $800 million on advertising during 2015. During President Obama’s term in office, he added hundreds of PR jobs totaling an additional $500 million per year. The Cato Institute’s Chris Edwards, a federal budget specialist, said: “Spending $1.5 billion on government PR activities is a huge waste of money. That sort of spending should be drastically scaled back.”
Between 2008 and 2011, 667 PR staffers were added by the administration, bringing the total number of PR staff in federal agencies to 5,238. That’s a 15% jump. Some of those jobs are no longer there, but as of 2014 (the most recent year from which records are available), there was still a total of 5,100 people in PR jobs on the federal payroll. In 2006, the median salary for PR staff was $77,000, $90,000 in 2014.
Huntsworth Promotes Both Royle and Clark to Global CEO Positions
Huntsworth Health (HH), under the umbrella of Huntsworth, just promoted Maryellen Royle and Jon Clark as global CEOs. HH is the health and science division for Huntsworth, an international PR group. Royle will lead Tonic Life Communications and Clark will lead Nitrogen — both are healthcare agencies of HH.
Royle previously led Tonic’s North American practice out of their Philadelphia office. One of the tasks she’ll be focused on is integrating and expanding the agency’s efforts worldwide. Prior to joining Tonic (2009), she was at another Huntsworth agency, Dorland Global Corporation, for 18 years.
Clark continues with Nitrogen, promoted from his position as managing director in London. He helped found the London location in 2008 and served as an associate director for HH before his work at Nitrogen. In his new efforts, he will focus on development and growth of their team worldwide, especially in the New York and London offices.
Menken Leaves Beckerman to Join 5WPR
Greg Menken is the new VP of Corporate Communications at 5WPR, one of the 20 largest independently owned U.S. PR firms. Menken has more than 15 years of PR and political expertise. His new job will focus on corporate communications, crisis management, issue advocacy, and corporate positioning. He was a VP at Beckerman and worked mainly with real estate, advocacy, and energy clients. Before that, he worked as an assistant to New York’s former governor, George Pataki. He will continue his efforts for the Republican Jewish Coalition as the New York regional director, a position he’s held for 10 years.
Michael Coates of Hill+Knowlton (H+K) Announces 2017 Retirement
Michael Coates, president for the Americas and CEO of Hill+Knowlton Strategies, announced his retirement, scheduled for 2017, after 33 years of service. He will shift his position in the interim before full retirement, becoming Global Vice Chairman working with new business growth in Canada, and with strategic clients. Jack Martin, Global Chairman and CEO, will now be receiving reports from the Canadian, Latin American, and American CEOs, Goldy Hyder, Claudia Gioia, and Beth Balsam respectively.