Burson announces global leadership appointments

Burson has appointed Chad Latz, Grant Toups, and Chris Kief as the global heads of innovation, digital and intelligence, and technology respectively.Chad Latz, (pictured), currently serving as the global chief innovation officer at BCW, will maintain this role after the merger with Hill & Knowlton, forming Burson. He will spearhead Burson's innovation endeavors, particularly focusing on AI-driven solutions, and continue to cultivate a team of AI specialists spanning data, technology, and academia.Toups, the current global chief technology officer at H&K, will transition to the role of global chief digital and intelligence officer at Burson. Tasked with streamlining digital-first client solutions, Toups will lead a global team specializing in digital and social communications, reputation management, technology advisory, and advanced intelligence services.Additionally, Kief, currently holding the position of BCW's global chief technology officer, will maintain his role at Burson. He will oversee the enterprise technology strategy, including investments, deployments, and governance, while also driving product development through engineering teams.BCW global CEO Corey duBrowa, who will assume the role of global CEO at Burson, emphasized the significant impact of artificial intelligence and digital technologies on the communications sector. He highlighted Burson's commitment to leveraging these technologies to deliver innovative communication solutions, citing tools like Decipher and Sonar for predictive analytics and message testing. duBrowa expressed confidence in the appointed team's ability to uphold Burson's reputation as a leader in the industry.

BCW and Hill & Knowlton announce Burson leadership appointments

Hill & Knowlton and BCW, which will merge as of July 1, 2024, to form Burson, has announced new appointments across global functional roles, global practices and two specialty agencies. Additional leadership appointments will be announced throughout the integration process.“This is an exceptional group of leaders drawn from our two organizations, each of whom has considerable experience in building businesses and brands,” said Corey duBrowa, Global CEO, BCW. “Hill & Knowlton has a well-established and strong global practice structure in place which will be replicated at Burson, under the guidance of these chair appointments, to deliver clients access to the talent and services at the scale they need. I have great confidence in all of our colleagues to build a modern, full-service, technology-driven Burson focused on building and protecting reputation and grounded in the timeless values of our namesake.”Appointments include:Jerry Lombardo, currently Global Chief Financial Officer, BCW, becomes Global Chief Financial Officer, BursonAzurée Montoute-Lewis, currently Global Chief People Officer, Hill & Knowlton, becomes Global Chief People Officer, BursonBrooke Hovey, currently Global President, BCW, becomes Global Chief Strategy Officer, BursonSimon Shaw, currently Global Chief Creative Strategy & Innovation Officer, Hill & Knowlton, becomes Global Chief Creative Officer, BursonMichelle Hutton, currently Global Chief Client and Growth Officer, BCW, becomes Global Chief Client and Growth Officer, BursonRanda Stephan, currently Global Chief Marketing and Communications Officer, Hill & Knowlton, becomes Global Chief Brand Officer, BursonBrenna Terry, currently Global Chair of Healthcare, Hill & Knowlton, becomes Global Chair of Healthcare, BursonSara Gourlay, currently Global Chair of Technology, Hill & Knowlton, becomes Global Chair of Technology, BursonSimon Whitehead, currently Global Chair of Energy & Industrials, Hill & Knowlton, becomes Global Chair of Energy & Industrials, Burson (in addition to his role as CEO, UK, Burson)Kristin Cahill continues as CEO, GCI GroupMatthew Lackie continues as CEO, AxiCom“As we bring our companies together, this group of leaders exemplifies a core premise behind the merger – that together we can draw on the industry's leading talent to create considerably more value for our clients and employees,” said AnnaMaria DeSalva, Chairman and CEO, Hill & Knowlton.“These functional, practice and agency leaders will enable the interdisciplinary solutions, global creative capability, and specialty counsel required by the world’s leading client organizations. We are enthusiastic about the progress reflected in this announcement and look forward to sharing more as our integration continues."On January 25th, WPP announced it would merge its two largest communications agencies, BCW and Hill & Knowlton, to form Burson, a powerhouse delivering modern communications leadership at scale to clients across the world. The merged company will become an industry-leading, full-service communications agency focused on building and protecting reputation. Burson will be operational as of July 1, 2024.

BCW appoints Lee Alman as US Issues & Crisis Head

Lee Alman, a seasoned professional with extensive experience from Edelman, has assumed the role of US Issues & Crisis Head at BCW. In his capacity as Executive VP, based in Los Angeles, Alman will spearhead BCW's issues, risk, and crisis specialization across the United States, operating within BCW's broader corporate affairs division.With a robust background spanning 12 years at Edelman, where he held the position of Executive VP within the US crisis and risk practice, Alman brings a wealth of expertise to his new role. His responsibilities at Edelman encompassed managing diverse client issues such as cybersecurity, corporate restructuring, executive misconduct, investor activism, labor relations, and natural disasters, among others. Prior to his tenure at Edelman, Alman served as Director of External Affairs for The Doe Fund, overseeing both internal and external communications for the significant nonprofit organization.Kristine Boyden, CEO of BCW Americas, emphasized the critical need for strategic guidance in today's multifaceted business landscape, praising Alman's ability to navigate complex challenges with clarity and prudence. She highlighted his proficiency not only in assisting clients across various industries but also in team leadership and development.Alman's appointment comes at a pivotal moment as BCW prepares for its merger with sister agency Hill & Knowlton, forming a unified entity named Burson effective July 1. This merger will establish a formidable $1 billion PR firm, poised to become a dominant force within the industry.