NEW YORK: Fleishman-Hillard president and CEO Dave Senay has been named chair-elect of the Council of Public Relations Firms, replacing outgoing Porter Novelli CEO Gary Stockman in that role.
Stockman could no longer serve as chair-elect, then chairman in December, because officers must be employed by Council-member firms, said Kathy Cripps, president of the organization. The board of directors voted on the new chair-elect last week, and approved Senay's appointment on Monday morning.
“[Senay's] been very active in the council and is the chair of the Critical Issues Forum, so he was a great choice,” Cripps said.
Weber Shandwick president Andy Polansky will remain chairman until December 1, when Senay will succeed him and serve a one-year term. The council holds its annual election to pick officers every October.
Stockman, who has served as CEO of Porter Novelli since January 2008, will leave the agency on July 31. He was named chair-elect of the Council of PR firms last October. Senay served as chair of judges of the Cannes PR Lions in 2011.
The council will continue to promote the key role PR firms play in social media, as well as diversity and collaboration with other industry groups, said Senay. He added that the group, which was founded in 1998, will also begin to promote the importance of business ethics once he assumes leadership.
“I think we're in an era of sudden life or sudden death, and that requires a structure to promote more critical thinking in the PR field, especially as we bring in non-traditional hires from adjacent disciplines,” Senay said. “It also means having the courage to lead your client in an ambiguous situation to a decision that is ethical.”