Pfizer hunts for chief as Kavanagh departs

Pfizer, the drugs giant behind products such as anti-impotence brand Viagra and top-selling drug Lipitor, is on the hunt for a UK PR chief following the exit of Miranda Kavanagh.

Kavanagh has quit as UK director of corporate and PA after six years, and almost 12 months after the merger with Pharmacia that triggered a raft of changes within the firms’ comms teams.

Strategic development director Steve Poulton has taken interim charge of Pfizer’s UK corporate comms and government relations, with a recruitment process for a permanent replacement for Kavanagh already under way.

Roy Sutherwood, associate director corporate and public affairs, has also assumed some of Kavanagh’s responsibilities. Sutherwood was formerly PA director at Pharmacia.

Kavanagh has already left Pfizer’s UK HQ in Surrey and was unavailable to comment as PRWeek went to press. She leaves officially on 31 March.

Just four weeks ago Kavanagh told PRWeek that ‘building trust with stakeholders’ was a ‘critical issue’ for Pfizer during 2004 (PRWeek, 13 February). She is not believed to have a new job lined up.

Kavanagh had responsibility for around 30 staff, spanning areas such as corporate comms, government relations and corporate social responsibility.

New York-headquartered Pfizer uses Fishburn Hedges for UK corporate media work and retains GPC International for government relations work in the UK.

Kavanagh joined Pfizer in 1998 from Citigate Communications.

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