2007 Power List: Gershon Kekst, founder and president, Kekst and Company

You won't see him attending PR industry functions, yet everyone knows his name. Kekst & Co., which he founded more than 35 years ago, is the premier name in the rarefied field of high-level corporate communications. The firms that cater to this niche – corporate crises, financial communications, M&As, bankruptcies, and other pressing issues – are quite competitive because their number is small, and they often go after the same clients. By and large, all are capable. But Kekst stands out for its longevity, exclusivity, and constancy of performance. It consistently ranks at or near the top for M&A volume and value in North America. Gershon himself has earned his influence through the firm he created and for his reputation of being at the end of the phone of many a CEO at the crossroads of crisis or opportunity. Like many other agency founders, he may not be as hands-on with client work today, but his firm still performs at the highest level, proving that his power still percolates throughout all of US business.

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