WASHINGTON: Edelman has appointed Steve Kerns SVP in the firm's Silicon Valley office, effective Feb. 18.
Edelman is the communications PR AOR for Symantec, and Kerns is taking on a lead role across product communications with a focus on the enterprise and consumer teams, he said. He'll also focus on aiding Symantec's evolution into a larger role in the technology marketplace while generating press for Edelman.
The company is going through a transformation, said Kerns, and he's helping facilitate the perception of their product solutions.
"I'll be really helping them communicate that strategic focus on how they transform their products," he said. "Helping them make things go faster and smoother."
Kerns' position is new, said Maria Amundson, GM at Edelman Silicon Valley. He will work primarily on the Symantec account but will have responsibility spanning other areas in the office, she said.
"We wanted a senior person with high expertise, specifically in enterprise software," she said. "General enterprise technology is a big area for us, we have decades of experience in that, lots of clients in that space both small and large and we continue to see that as an area of growth."
Kerns will report to Robin Kim, EVP, global technology.
The SVP opportunity presented itself as a great way to combine his skills, said Kerns, and he's already met with the client and considers the agency "refreshing," noting the opportunities he sees for clients there.
Kerns had been in talks with Edelman and when the SVP position became available, and they proposed it to him, he said. Kerns is a technology PR veteran, having worked at both small shops and big firms. Most recently, he was at FleishmanHillard, where he served as Senior Vice President, where he had corporate communications responsibilities and clients such as AT&T.
Prior to FleishmanHillard, Kerns served as a senior director at Marketing Alchemist, and later moved to Bite Communications, where he was an account manager. He was previously a senior associate at Sparkpr, where he did start-up work. In 2000, Kerns started Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide, where he was an account executive until 2002.