WASHINGTON: Richard Mintz, who has become one of the most well known figures in DC agency circles during his years as head of Burson-Marsteller’s global public affairs group, is leaving Burson to become a partner at Brunswick Group in Washington.
"I've been with WPP, in one form or another, for 14 of my last 17 or 18 years, first with Ogilvy, then with Y&R, and now with Burson. I just felt it was time to do something new," said Mintz. "The way I see it is, I'm leaving the best global full service agency for the best global specialized agency."
He has been leading Burson's business development activities in addition to its public affairs work. He previously worked as director of public affairs at the US Department of Transportation, as well as on the 1992 Clinton presidential campaign.
Steve Lipin, Brunswick's senior partner in the US, said that Mintz would bolster the agency's talent in DC, where "We are doing more regulatory and public affairs work," Lipin said. "There's hardly a deal that goes by without some form of regulatory component."
He also said that Brunswick's clients are increasingly requesting public affairs expertise as part of their financially-focused campaigns, in Europe as well as in the US. "[Mintz] brings an international set of relationships and practice that is complementary to what we are doing around the world," Lipin said.
The agency worked on behalf of the Chinese oil company CNOOC last year in its failed bid to purchase Unocal, which was scuttled in part due to political opposition in Congress.
"One of [Brunswick's] objectives is to strengthen their global and their Washington public affairs capability," Mintz said. "My focus will be on helping clients manage political risk [and] navigate issues, particularly around acquisitions and access to capital markets."
Mintz's last day at Burson will be February 3, and he will begin at Brunswick on March 1.
Jennifer Norton, Burson's global communications director, said that the agency has not selected his replacement yet.