Ford tries to right communications slip

DEARBORN, MI: Ford has finally gotten moving on its long-awaited PR reorganization, but the automotive giant continues to come up empty in its search to replace departing top voice Vaughn Koshkarian.

DEARBORN, MI: Ford has finally gotten moving on its long-awaited PR reorganization, but the automotive giant continues to come up empty in its search to replace departing top voice Vaughn Koshkarian.

DEARBORN, MI: Ford has finally gotten moving on its long-awaited PR

reorganization, but the automotive giant continues to come up empty in

its search to replace departing top voice Vaughn Koshkarian.



Koshkarian, who still handles the job of VP of public affairs from

Ford’s Dearborn headquarters, was named VP of Ford Asia Pacific late

last year.



The PR staff reorganization seems to be moving slowly but surely. So

far, the moves have essentially taken duties once handled by

since-departed directors and assigned them to the remaining three

directors. A fourth director, who will be responsible for communications

strategy, is expected to be hired once Koshkarian’s replacement is

named, according to Jim Vella, director of global operations.



’We haven’t added or subtracted people,’ he said. ’It’s more a

restructuring to better serve the company’s new structure.’ Ford CEO Jac

Nasser reorganized the company last October, creating four global

regions for the auto giant.



Recent high-level departures from Ford’s team of PR mechanics have

included Stuart Dyble, who returned to Britain to head up PR at

Ford-owned Jaguar (PRWeek Dec. 20, 1999).



Earlier last year, the company also lost Judith Muhlberg, former

director of public affairs for Ford’s automotive operations, and John

Spelich, whom Vella replaced in August. Muhlberg became vice president

of communications with Boeing, while Spelich left for a top

communications post at Gateway.



Under the new communications structure, Vella oversees the global news

office, media information and national public affairs. Ken Zino,

director of North American Ford brand operations and global product

development, oversees brand group PR while internal communications are

overseen by director Mel Stephens.



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