NEWS BRIEFS:

DALLAS: Texas Instruments has tapped Waggener Edstrom to handle its US business media relations. Wag Ed was one of five firms the company considered for the task, along with Euro RSCG Magnet, Fleishman-Hillard, Golin/Harris, and Ogilvy PR Worldwide. FitzGerald Communications had been the incumbent agency.

PARSIPPANY, NJ: Charles Alfaro has joined Cadbury Schweppes Americas as VP of communications. In this newly created post, he will oversee PR for both Cadbury's beverage and confectionary businesses in the US. Alfaro had been executive director of corporate and business communications at Hoffman-La Roche, a company he joined in 1997.

FINDLAY, OH: Patricia Brown has been named to the newly created position of VP, global branding and communications for Cooper Tire & Rubber. Brown, who has spent 36 years with Cooper, had been VP of advertising and communications since 2000.

NEW YORK: Chris Taylor, Bloomberg LP's chief spokesman, has left the financial news company to head up communications efforts for MacAndrews & Forbes Holdings, the company owned by Ronald O. Perelman.

CHICAGO: Former Y&R Group vice chairman Ron Bess has been hired by Euro RSCG Worldwide to fill the newly created post of regional director of North America. Bess begins work at his new firm immediately and will report directly to chairman and CEO Jim Heekin. Bess' duties include managing Euro RSCG Worldwide's Chicago-based and Canadian organizations.

ST. LOUIS: Fleishman-Hillard has promoted four executives to senior partner: Jeffrey Davis, Donald Etling, Wendy Flanagan, and David Lowey.

LOS ANGELES: Ruder Finn has been retained by two new clients: Morgan Samuels Company, an executive search consulting firm and Ellison Educational Equipment, a die-cutting manufacturer and product-development company. Also, Sandra Kelder and Eliot Hoff have joined the company as VPs of the corporate practice of Ruder Finn/New York.

CHICAGO: Bob Kopach has joined the Chicago office of Ketchum as an SVP to head its brand- and food-marketing practice. Kopach was an SVP and deputy GM of Edelman's consumer group.

SAN FRANCISCO: After a nearly 24-year career at Burson-Marsteller, Dave Chapman will join Ketchum in June as director of Ketchum West. He replaces Doug Kinzley, who left the agency in April to take an executive position with the Kneedler-Fauchere Group, a high-end home and commercial interiors firm. Chapman, an MD in Burson-Marsteller's San Francisco outpost, will work from Ketchum's Bay Area office.

NEW YORK: David Bashaw and Pat Donohue have joined Ogilvy as SVPs in its health and medical practice in the New York office. Donohue was most recently director of communications for McNeil Consumer & Specialty Pharmaceuticals, a division of Johnson & Johnson. Bashaw most recently served as SVP and group head on some pharmaceutical accounts at Edelman.

MALDEN, MA: Malden Catholic, a private secondary school, has appointed Donald Martelli to the position of director for marketing and communications. This is the first time in its history that Malden Catholic has had someone in this position. Martelli will be responsible for enhancing the school's brand and reputation.

CHICAGO: Scott Reifert has been promoted by the Chicago White Sox to VP of communications. Reifert has been with the team since 1991 when he was assistant director of PR. He was promoted to PR director in 1997.

NEW YORK: Video Monitoring Services, a news- and advertising-monitoring and analysis company, has acquired Mediamon, the nation's fifth largest broadcast monitoring company.

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