Corp comms VP Thomas Collins exits H&R Block

Collins has worked at the company since June 2014.

Thomas Collins
Thomas Collins

KANSAS CITY, MO: Thomas Collins, VP of corporate communications, has left H&R Block.

The tax preparer is searching for a successor to Collins, who worked at the company for four years. His last day at the company was Friday, he said via email.

Collins said he has no immediate plans.

"[Collins] wanted to take some time off to ride his bike across the country," an H&R Block spokesperson said via email. "Now is the perfect time to do that as he figures out his next move."

Susan Waldron, director of PR, will fill in to cover external comms, while Jon Whitefield, director of communications, will lead internal comms until a new PR chief is named. There have been no changes to H&R Block’s relationship with Edelman, which was named PR AOR in May, said Waldron.

"Whoever gets the job will be at the forefront of the company’s multi-year transformation," Collins said, via email. "We’re trying to reposition the business and reimagine our future for long-term sustainable growth."

Shifting consumer habits and simplified annual tax returns have prompted the company to plan to close 400 locations, or 4% of its 10,000 franchise offices. H&R Block wants to position itself as a "cross-channel player" that can toggle between online and in-person assisted tax returns.

Collins had been VP of corporate communications at H&R Block since May 2017. Previously, he served as director of external comms before he was named head of corporate communications in April 2015, when the company combined internal, external, and channel communications.

Before joining H&R Block in June 2014, Collins was deputy chief of Army public affairs at the Pentagon in the most recent of several roles in the U.S. Army.

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