London 2012 drafts in UEFA’s Lee to head PR

London 2012, the bid vehicle set up to the bring the Olympic Games to the UK, has appointed Mike Lee from European football governing body Uefa to head its PR.

Lee will join in two weeks, initially on a part-time basis, in the newly created post of director of comms and public affairs, the same role he held at UEFA.

He will handle media, government and community relations in the UK and internationally and will move to a full-time role in January.

News of Lee’s appointment follows the hire of veteran sports journalist Steve Parry as director of media a fortnight ago and the appointment last week of Keith Mills as CEO.

London 2012 currently uses Brunswick and Capital PR for media relations. In addition, Cohn & Wolfe promotes a logo design competition for the organisation (PRWeek, 12 September).

Lee said: ‘It’s right that any incoming director looks at agency support, but it’s pre-emptive to talk about this at the moment.’

Lee and Parry plan to grow an in-house press team, but the balance between in-house and agency support had yet to be discussed with Mills and London 2012 chairman Barbara Cassani, Lee said.

Parry joined from a role as media consultant to the International Olympic Committee, the secretariat that will decide in July 2005 which city will host the games. New York, Madrid and Paris are being touted as London’s main competitors.

At Uefa, Lee heads a core Switzerland-based press and PA team of around 13, plus new media staff.

He said the responsibilities of his replacement – who has yet to be recruited – would probably be partly decided by new Uefa CEO Lars-Christer Olsson, who will assume the role in January.

Lee joined Uefa three years ago from the FA Premier League (PRWeek, 7 July 2000) and was formerly deputy MD of Westminster Strategy and an adviser to David Blunkett, now the home secretary.

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