Doug SpongDoug Spong

Doug Spong plans to step down as president emeritus of Spong, one of the top-ranking PR firms in the Midwest, and leave his role as managing partner of the company’s sister advertising agency Carmichael Lynch. That’s according to the Minneapolis Star&Tribune.

The move comes soon after Spong named managing director Julie Batliner as the PR agency’s new president.

“At the end of the day, while we did our due diligence and looked outside, which I think was a really good thing, our best candidate was sitting right next door to me,” Spong told the Star&Tribune.

Spong started his career at Colle+McVoy, where he worked for nine years before he received a call from ad man Lee Lynch about starting a public relations firm for Carmichael Lynch, the Star&Tribune said.

Spong then launched the public relations firm Carmichael Lynch Spong, which was rebranded last year to Spong. Clients have included Genuine Thermos Brand, Sherwin-Williams and Jennie-O Turkey Store.

Spong will continue to work in PR, working with some select client on how to sharpen their communications and competitiveness. Details are expected early next year.