Cisco asks VP King to help oversee search process

SAN JOSE, CA: As Cisco's RFP has grown in scope, VP of corporate communications services Jere Brooks King has been brought in to oversee the process along with Claudia Ceniceros, Cisco's senior director of corporate PR, who initiated the review.

SAN JOSE, CA: As Cisco's RFP has grown in scope, VP of corporate communications services Jere Brooks King has been brought in to oversee the process along with Claudia Ceniceros, Cisco's senior director of corporate PR, who initiated the review.

King oversees technology PR, industry analyst relations, corporate identity, publications and editorial services, and web marketing and strategy. Tech PR was previously handled by Michael Hakkert, who reported to King. But Hakkert left in May to join Sun Microsystems as corporate communications director. King said she is not currently looking to fill Hakkert's position, and is taking on his responsibilities.

As PRWeek.com reported last week, the scope of the much-anticipated RFP has grown since Cisco embarked on the agency search in June for a US corporate AOR. Now, the RFP includes Latin America, tech PR, and News@Cisco, the company's online news site.

The RFP is in the hands of a limited number of prequalified firms, with a final agency expected to be hired by December.

"I did an exhaustive internal review of the company's needs, and what became clear is that a number of other areas of the company need PR support," said Jerry Swerling, an LA-based PR management consultant, who is advising Cisco on its search.

The agencies that received the RFP "demonstrated the ability to handle a diverse package of needs," Swerling said. "It's a pretty diverse and challenging mix. It's not just corporate, and it's not just technology. News@Cisco requires a certain expertise." The search is now closed to any agencies that don't already have the RFP, he added.

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