Brooklyn's Ditto has recruited Edelman's Blain Rethmeier to run its newly opened outpost in San Francisco.
At the No. 1 independent firm, Rethmeier handled the crisis & risk practice for the western region and led the corporate unit in Los Angeles.
Prior to Edelman, he served as President George W. Bush's special assistant for communications for the National Economic and Homeland Security Councils.
The Trump Administration tapped Rethmeier to shepherd General John Kelly through his Senate confirmation hearings for the Homeland Security Secretary slot.
Texan Trey Ditto launched Williamsburg-headquartered Ditto in 2002.
He was involved in Republican politics in the Lone Star State before becoming deputy press secretary for Bush's Education Secretary Margaret Spellings.
Ditto has worked at PR/PA firms such as Shirley & Banister, Rubenstein Assocs., KCSA Strategic Communications and Emanate.
His firm counts clients in the technology, financial services, education and nonprofit sectors including Brooklyn Law School, STA Wealth Management, Argo Group and Flatiron School.
He called opening in SF a "no-brainer because we have always had clients in the Bay Area."