Former Hacked Off comms head David Hass joins AkzoNobel

Former director of comms at press regulation lobbying group Hacked Off David Hass has been appointed by AkzoNobel as head of UK comms.

AkzoNobel: Owns Dulux
AkzoNobel: Owns Dulux

Hass, who is understood to have been replaced by Adam Liversage from the BPI, will report to John McLaren, director of corporate comms.

He joins the parent company of Dulux paints following a decade in senior comms roles in government, politics and the BBC.

Hass held the top comms role at Hacked Off from 2012 to 2013 and represented the public image of the lobbying group, which called for the adoption of Lord Justice Leveson’s recommendations for changes to the way the press handles complaints from the public.

He was also previously special adviser to the former justice secretary for England and Wales Ken Clarke and was responsible for day-to-day PR and crisis communications across the UK prisons system.

He also devised the Working Prisons policy, a nationwide programme to cut reoffending by building real workplaces inside jails, where offenders train and work while serving their sentences.

Before his time working for Clarke he was press secretary to George Osborne from 2007 to 2009, when the now Chancellor of the Exchequer was the chief opposition spokesman on the economy.

Hass steps in for Elizabeth Bickham, who left the company in September this year.

He said: "AkzoNobel is a global multinational with great British roots. From the proud histories of ICI and Courtaulds to this year’s £100m investment in high tech manufacturing in North East England, the company can boast a long and enduring commitment to investing in UK expertise in science and innovation.
"This is also a company with a strong social conscience. In an industry known all too often for environmental recklessness, AkzoNobel has set the standard for responsibility and sustainability. It is a big company with a big heart, and that is what I hope to illuminate."

Before his time in politics, Hass was a broadcast journalist. He was a reporter for independent radio in Slough, before joining the BBC in 2000 as a producer in television news.

A year later, he moved to the political analysis programme, The World At One, producing for the BBC from London, New York, Washington and Jerusalem. His broadcast career culminated in two years as an editor of the flagship Radio 4 programme, Today.

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