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O'Dwyer's Newsletter - Jun. 25, 2012 - Vol. 45 - No. 26 (download PDF version)

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Porter Novelli CEO Gary Stockman is leaving the firm after four years at the helm of the Omnicom unit.

Stockman, who is staying on through late July, took the reins in January 2008 from Helen Ostrowski after he joined the firm with its acquisition of Copithorne and Bellows in 2000.

“For more than a decade I've been committed to the transformation Porter Novelli leads for our clients every day. After nearly five years as CEO, it’s time for a new experience,” Stockman said in a statement.

He follows the exit of chief marketing officer Michael Goldberg this month after a brief stint.

Julie Winskie, president of PN who oversaw a retrenchment of the agency’s operations in late 2008, stepped down in April. Ostrowski is now a senior advisor at APCO Worldwide.

Senior partner Michael Ramah, a 25-year PN veteran, will work with the departing CEO during a transition and assume the duties of acting CEO on Stockman’s departure, PN said. Anthony Viceroy is president and CFO and PN has eight senior partners.

Dale Adams, CEO of OMC’s Diversified Agency Services, which houses PN, said: “The Porter Novelli history and its future make it a valued member of the Omnicom family and we will fully support the leadership transition and appointment of a new chief executive officer.”


The Univ. of Massachusetts system wants to hear from PR firms in a bid to shape public perceptions of its educational and research accomplishments.


The Amherst-based institution, which also includes campuses in Boston, Dartmouth, Lowell and Worcester, released an RFP on June 12 to develop a PR strategy and plan for the system, prepare and handle media communications, pitch story ideas and support campus comms. operations, among other tasks.

Over the objections of Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick, UMass’ trustees on June 6 approved a 4.9 percent tuition increase this fall.

Enrollment headcount system-wide in fall of 2010 topped 68,000 with more than 17,600 employees, and the system's R&D budget surpassed $542M that year. Its Dartmouth-based law school earned national accreditation this month after an eight-year push.

John Kennedy, a former ACLU PR hand, was named vice chancellor of university relations in late 2010.

Finalists will be asked to present in Boston in late July. Proposals are due July 9. RFP:

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Republican lobbyist Chris Giblin has moved into the CEO slot at Ogilvy Government Relations as Drew Maloney takes an external affairs post at the Republican National Committee to front the Romney campaign.

Giblin & Maloney
Giblin, Maloney

Giblin is the former aide to GOP Texas Reps. John Carter and Jack Fields as well as Charlie Norward of Georgia. Prior to OGR, Maloney served as legislative director for Texas Rep. Tom DeLay.

OGR chairman Wayne Berman, who merged his Berman Enterprises with Ogilvy in 2004, also has left the firm for a political post at client Blackstone. Senior VPs John O'Neill and Elena Tompkins are exiting the firm. O'Neill, onetime tax counsel to Iowa Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley, is heading for Capitol Counsel, while Tompkins, a George Bush II Labor Dept. staffer, is launching her own firm.

The moves follows OGR’s loss of Chevron, one of its biggest accounts, earlier this month.


WPP is acquiring San Francisco-based AKQA, a top digital advertising shop that serves blue-chip clients such as Nike, Microsoft Xbox, Target and Google.

The 12-year-old firm employs 1,160 people in S.F., New York, Washington, London, Paris, Amsterdam, Berlin and Shanghai. Financially backed by private equity firm General Atlantic, AKQA projects 2012 revenues of $230M, up from $189M in 2011.

AKQA is to operate as a stand-alone brand of WPP led by CEO Ajaz Ahmed and chairman Tom Bedecarre, who also becomes president of newly formed WPP Ventures to scout for digital investments in Silicon Valley.

Japan’s Dentsu mulled the acquisition of AKQA two years ago, but talks fell apart over a purchase price.

Bob Kocher, who was special assistant to President Obama on healthcare and economic policy, has joined APCO Worldwide's health and international advisory boards. Earlier, he was in charge of McKinsey & Co.'s healthcare economics group.

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