Harold Burson: Power List 2007

Founder and Chairman, Burson-Marsteller

Burson-Marsteller is unique among firms in its ability to cultivate and produce great leaders, even if some do move on. These include such luminaries as Ketchum's Rob Flaherty, GCI Group's Jeff Hunt, and retired Accenture PR and market-ing head Jim Murphy. While it might credit its training programs for these success stories, it's more accurate to point to the powerful and ongoing magnetism of PR's most famous octogenarian – Harold Burson. Burson is the chair-man who doesn't fade away and no one minds, because while his career history is highlighted with key events and leaders of the second half of the 20th century, he is no relic. It caused no little stir when Burson suggested, in remarks he made at the ICCO Summit in New Dehli in 2006, that licensing of the PR profession might be a good thing. When he talks, people do more than listen. Burson still takes interns to lunch, adds to his Rolodex, advises CEOs, travels the world for the firm, pitches, blogs, and makes public appearances and speeches where he is treated like a rock star.

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