LONDON, Nov. 6, 2017 – Leading global communications firm Ketchum today announced that partner Denise Kaufmann, currently CEO of Ketchum London and member of the firm’s Global Leadership Council, is returning to the U.S. to take on the role of director of client development for North America. At the same time, Jo-ann Robertson, partner and deputy CEO in London, is being promoted to CEO of Ketchum London. Both roles are effective January 2018.
Kaufmann has led the London office since 2013, and in that time she introduced the operation’s integrated approach, which has served as a model for the larger Ketchum network. During Kaufmann’s tenure in London, the office was consistently rated as one of the best places to work in the U.K. by the Great Place to Work Institute and received numerous honors, including being named the Public Relations Consultancy Association’s International Consultancy of the Year and CorpComms Magazine’s Agency of the Decade. In 2015, Robertson was promoted to deputy CEO and began supporting Kaufmann in leading the office.
“Together, Denise and Jo-ann have made a powerhouse team for one of our largest and most successful offices,” said Barri Rafferty, partner and president, Ketchum. “I am confident that the office will continue to thrive under Jo-ann’s leadership as Denise returns to her U.S. roots to focus on the client experience in our largest and most critical region.”
Kaufmann will be based in Chicago, where she started her Ketchum career 20 years ago. Throughout the course of her Ketchum career spanning three continents, she has run several of the firm’s largest global client engagements, including spending 10 months seconded with a client’s in-house team. In her new role, she will focus on providing the highest level of client counsel for the firm’s North America-based clients. She will report to partner and chief client officer Michael O’Brien and work closely with client directors across the region to continuously improve client engagements and facilitate borderless growth.
“Denise is a charismatic team builder, a creative problem solver, and an extraordinary counselor,” said O’Brien. “She is known for delivering top-notch service to clients, having a razor-sharp focus on attracting and retaining the industry’s very best talent, and for creating an environment that encourages our employees to reach their full potential.”
In January, Robertson will assume responsibility for the day-to-day operations of the London office, which includes securing and retaining top talent and building on the office’s strong base of brand, corporate, healthcare, public affairs and technology clients. She will report into partner Mark Hume, COO and CFO, Europe.
As deputy CEO, Robertson has successfully pursued new opportunities in the marketplace while ensuring continued excellence in client service, maintaining a highly motivated and productive team, and leading integrated, cross-practice collaboration. Robertson joined Ketchum in 2011 as managing director of corporate and public affairs where she tripled the size of the team. She was named partner in 2013. Prior to Ketchum, Robertson spent eight years at Weber Shandwick, leading its U.K. corporate and public affairs team, and began her career as a political activist and a TV reporter in Scotland.
“Jo-ann is a highly strategic, pragmatic leader with an eye for mentoring talent and a proven track record of business generation, and she is one of our best client counselors,” said Hume. “Having worked side by side with Denise over the past two years to strategically grow this critical hub for global client engagements, I could not think of anyone more perfectly suited for this role than Jo-ann.”
Ketchum is a leading global communications firm with operations in more than 70 countries across six continents. The winner of 45 Cannes Lions and an unprecedented five PRWeek Campaign of the Year Awards, Ketchum partners with clients to deliver strategic programming, game-changing creative and measurable results that build brands and reputations. For more information on Ketchum, a part of Omnicom Public Relations Group, visit www.ketchum.com.
About Omnicom Public Relations Group
Omnicom Public Relations Group is a global collective of three of the top global public relations agencies worldwide and specialist agencies in areas including public affairs, marketing to women, fashion, global health strategy and corporate social responsibility. It encompasses more than 6,000 public relations professionals in more than 330 offices worldwide who provide their expertise to companies, government agencies, NGOs and nonprofits across a wide range of industries. Omnicom Public Relations Group is part of the DAS Group of Companies, a division of Omnicom Group Inc. that includes more than 200 companies in a wide range of marketing disciplines including advertising, public relations, healthcare, customer relationship management, events, promotional marketing, branding and research.
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