NEW YORK: Joe Paluska, chairman of Edelman’s global technology practice, left the firm at the end of June to pursue opportunities in the Silicon Valley startup industry.
In conjunction with his departure from Edelman, Paluska is relocating to Silicon Valley from Paris, where he has been based for the past three years.
He does not have a new job lined up at the moment, but he has his sights set on the West Coast startup community, he told PRWeek via email.
"My heart and head are telling me to reconnect with my roots in Silicon Valley and the startup community there," Paluska said in the email. "I plan to fully plug back into the Silicon Valley community with a focus on entrepreneurial opportunities."
While at Edelman, Paluska represented a wide range of technology brands, such as Adobe, AMD, Box, EMC, Hewlett-Packard, HootSuite, Juniper Networks, Symantec, Tencent/WeChat, and Xbox. He also repositioned Edelman’s global tech practice toward startups and high growth enterprises to "orient the portfolio toward higher growth opportunities," according to his LinkedIn profile.
Prior to joining Edelman, Paluska spent five years as VP of global communications and public policy at Better Place, a company that develops infrastructures for electric cars. He helped the business create and implement its communications, public affairs, and stakeholder-engagement strategies.
Before Better Place, Paluska worked at Hill & Knowlton for more than five years, most recently as director of its worldwide technology practice.
"I caught the startup bug working for Shai Agassi [founder of Better Place], and most recently having worked with Halsey Minor and his latest startup, Bitreserve," Paluska said.
He added that he has respect for "all of Edelman."
"[Paluska] was a tremendous asset for the firm and his heart was in startup land," said Ben Boyd, deputy chairman of practices and sectors, and global chair of Edelman’s corporate practice. "We digest that decision and we are looking at who is right to take that portfolio forward."
A search is underway for Paluska’s replacement at Edelman, said Boyd.
In the interim, Boyd, along with Edelman’s Silicon Valley GM Maria Amundson and EMEA head of technology Jonathan Hargreaves, will take over Paluska’s responsibilities.
Earlier this month, Edelman promoted Liz Lee, previously GM of its New York digital operation, to US digital practice leader. Lee succeeded Cricket Wardein, who was named president of Edelman’s Western region earlier this month. Andrew Foote, former EVP and director of client services at the firm, succeeded Lee as GM of Edelman Digital New York.