CAMPBELL, CA: Sheri Benjamin is no longer with Weber Shandwick, although details of her departure remain unclear. Benjamin was president of WS' US technology practice, and oversaw the San Francisco and Silicon Valley offices.
When reached, Benjamin said her lawyers have directed her not to comment. WS also declined to comment on the issue.
Benjamin and her husband Steve sold their Silicon Valley-based tech shop, The Benjamin Group, to BSMG Worldwide in July 1999. It then became the agency's US tech brand. In 2001, BSMG was acquired by marketing giant Interpublic Group (IPG), and was subsequently merged with IPG's Weber Shandwick. In March 2002, Benjamin became president of the US tech practice. Benjamin said her earn-out finished at the end of 2001, and she characterized it as "very successful."
The agency is already making changes within its tech practice. Casey Sheldon, agency president of the Northwest and tech practice leader on the West Coast, will now become president of the global tech practice, said Joe Kessler, president of Weber Shandwick in California. Sheldon will also remain Northwest president.
Kessler added that the US tech practice president and West Coast tech practice president titles would disappear. Kessler was formerly president of the global tech practice, but that role has moved to Sheldon, as Kessler will take on additional responsibilities in 2004, which he said were premature to discuss.
As for the Bay Area offices, the agency has hired former Porter Novelli EVP Debra Raine as EVP and GM of the Bay Area.