Edelman Australia CEO Hutton steps into global consumer role

Edelman has appointed Michelle Hutton, CEO of its Australia operation, as global chair of the agency's consumer marketing practice. She will relocate to London for the role.

LONDON: Edelman has appointed Michelle Hutton, CEO of its Australia operation, to serve as global chair of the agency’s consumer marketing practice, effective November 1.

Hutton, who joined Edelman Australia as chief executive in 2010, will report to Ben Boyd, president of the firm’s practices, sectors, and offerings. She will succeed Jennifer Cohan, who became president of Edelman New York on July 1.  

The agency is searching for Hutton’s successor in Australia.

As consumer marketing leader, Hutton will manage what is Edelman’s largest practice, comprised of more than 1,000 staffers around the world. She will transfer from Australia to Edelman’s London office for the position.

Hutton said she is honored to have the "opportunity to lead what is a very important practice for the firm."

Having spent most of her career in Asia-Pacific, Hutton said she will stay connected to the markets in that region while also working closely with Edelman’s teams in the UK and Europe.

Plans for the practice’s other regional focus areas are to be determined, but Hutton said emerging markets are key for the agency.

One of her objectives is to build on her predecessor Cohan’s cross-practice and cross-sector collaboration, she said.

"There’s a tremendous opportunity" for Edelman to help CCOs engage their brands’ CMOs and work together in a more integrated fashion, Hutton said.

"Longer term we definitely see that there is a continued opportunity to deliver strategic, well-planned, creative storytelling through the CMO community," she said.

Prior to joining Edelman, Hutton spent 15 years at Hill & Knowlton, during which she served as CEO for six years. Before that, she worked at Network Communications for three years.

In addition to Hutton, Edelman recently named Stephanie Lvovich as global chair of its public affairs practice, and Maria Amundson as global chair of the technology sector.

Earlier this month, Edelman also hired Ketchum veteran AJ Goodman to serve as SVP of media in the New York office.

In 2011, Hill & Knowlton sued Hutton for allegedly soliciting clients and staff to join her at Edelman. Following the settlement, Hutton issued an apology to H&K, saying she recognized that her "conduct was not appropriate in the circumstances."

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