FRB LA office loses fifth staffer to H&K

LOS ANGELES: Hill & Knowlton has quietly built its Los Angeles office at the expense of the Financial Relations Board/ BSMG Worldwide, hiring away a fifth senior-level executive from the firm last week.

LOS ANGELES: Hill & Knowlton has quietly built its Los Angeles office at the expense of the Financial Relations Board/ BSMG Worldwide, hiring away a fifth senior-level executive from the firm last week.

LOS ANGELES: Hill & Knowlton has quietly built its Los Angeles

office at the expense of the Financial Relations Board/ BSMG Worldwide,

hiring away a fifth senior-level executive from the firm last week.



Michaelle Burstin, an FRB VP and media relations managing director, has

joined H&K, a move which caps the agency’s months-long drive to build a

strong team with financial, technology and media relations

expertise.



The wholesale exodus from FRB began when Fiona Ross left to head H&K’s

LA financial practice as senior managing director last January (PRWeek,

February 1). She was followed in April by Eileen Morcos, now H&K’s

financial relations managing director. Senior account supervisor Geri

Weinfield and SAE Stacy Roughan joined the firm during the summer.



FRB executives declined comment on the personnel defections.



Alan Elias, H&K’s senior MD for media relations in Los Angeles and

Irvine, said the hirings were part of a plan designed to take advantage

of the big influx of dot-com companies to Southern California.



’They’re moving here because of the high real estate costs and general

cost of living in Silicon Valley,’ Elias said. ’As a result, we’re

seeing many start-ups taking advantage of the price breaks they can get

by building a business in Los Angeles. Of course, this means a lot of

opportunity for PR firms in the region.’



Elias touted Burstin as a key part of the puzzle. ’With Michaelle, we

can now offer high-end consulting on chat rooms, the role of the web

site and using the Net as a vehicle for distribution and marketing.’



Burstin, who was with FRB for two years, previously worked with the US

Trade Representative as a director, managing President Clinton’s trade

advisory committees.



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