Former P&G comms leader Chris Hassall joins APCO Advisory Council

He left the CPG company nearly three years ago and began teaching MBA students in China.

WASHINGTON: Chris Hassall, Procter & Gamble’s former global external relations officer who retired in June 2012, has joined APCO Worldwide’s International Advisory Council, the firm said on Tuesday.

Hassall left the CPG giant nearly three years ago to move to China to work as an instructor teaching MBA and executive MBA students at Sun Yat-Sen University. He is a visiting professor at the school, according to his LinkedIn account. It was not immediately clear where he will be based for the Advisory Council role.

The group also includes former World Wrestling Entertainment CEO Linda McMahon, former VP of corporate communications and philanthropy at Amgen Phyllis Piano, and Kirk Stewart, former global VP of corporate communications at Nike.

Hassall said he is now based in New York City, where he is also a guest lecturer at New York University, and will continue to travel to China a few times a year. He decided to join APCO’s council after looking into consulting opportunities, he said.

"What I’ll be doing is a combination of things based on experience – communication about technical issues, issues management, issues prevention, and [consulting on] new types of products," Hassall explained.

Hassall spent nearly three decades at P&G, most recently as the global external relations officer, leading a group with 1,200 staffers with responsibility for global corporate communications and reputation, media, and government and community relations.

He previously worked in P&G’s Guangzhou office, responsible for external relations for Asia and Greater China and also led external relations for Central and Eastern Europe from Geneva. Hassall joined P&G in 1983.

The company restructured its communications function after his departure, placing Marc Pritchard at the helm of the revamped practice. It began to focus more on mastering communications, delivering and developing stories and programs about P&G brands and the company at large, and creating connections and relationships with influencers and consumers.

This story was updated on March 17 with comment from Hassall.

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