WASHINGTON: Robert Schooling stepped down from his role as APCO Worldwide's president for the Americas on Tuesday.
“After 18 years at APCO, [Schooling] decided he would like to have a corporate experience; he is actually going to be working for one of our clients, so we are obviously all in line about this,” said APCO CEO Margery Kraus.
APCO's client roster includes BlackBerry, whose account it won in a joint pitch with Text 100 in April, as well as Ikea. The firm has also worked with the Clinton Global Initiative, Sprint, DEK International, Tetra Pak, and Rotary International, among others.
It is understood that APCO has no current plans to replace Schooling, and that COO Neal Cohen will temporarily assume his responsibilities in the Americas.
During his time at APCO, Schooling led communications campaigns on a number of corporate crises, public policy debates, and corporate and industry reputation efforts. He represented companies and trade organizations in healthcare, finance, travel and tourism, education, and manufacturing.
“This could not be more amicable; [Schooling] created a lot of intellectual property,” said Kraus. “He is only in his 40s, and you can't blame him for wanting to have another life experience as part of his career -- we owe him that for all his good work.”
Details on Schooling's new position and start date were not immediately available.
APCO has made a number of recent personnel moves, including hiring former Alcoa communications leader Nick Ashooh, who started his role as the firm's senior director of corporate and executive communications earlier this month. In September, APCO appointed Marilyn Fancher as its first chief creative officer, and New York office MD Nelson Fernandez was promoted to executive director.