Edelman's Michelle Hutton named Cannes Lions PR jury president

Hutton, MD of global clients, has worked at Edelman since 2010.

CANNES, FRANCE: The Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity has named Edelman MD of global clients Michelle Hutton as jury president for the 2019 PR Lions.

Hutton has served in her current role since 2017, based in London. She joined the agency in 2010 as CEO of Edelman Australia. In 2014, she moved into a role leading the agency’s global consumer marketing team, creating Edelman’s Earned Brand Series of Consumer IP and chairing Edelman’s Global Brand Council, according to her bio on Edelman’s website.

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

Hutton was on the jury for the Cannes PR Lions in 2017.

"It’s time for our industry to take back the craft of PR and lead the charge at next year’s Cannes Lions Festival," Hutton said. "The marketing world knows that our craft matters, now more than ever, because demanding attention is no longer enough; earning attention is now essential."

Cannes revamped its awards structure in 2018, placing PR into the "Reach" track, defined as "the insight, strategy, and planning enabling brands to effectively engage consumers at scale and be heard amid the ongoing battle for attention."

Other jury presidents in the Reach track are Futuremade founder Tracey Follows for the Creative Strategy Lions; Dentsu Japan head of digital creative and executive creative director Yasuharu Sasaki for the Creative Data Lions; Pereira O'Dell cofounder and creative chairman P.J. Pereira for the Social & Influencer Lions; MRM McCann U.K.’s chairwoman and chief creative officer Nicky Bullard for the Direct Lions; and WPP U.K. country manager and MediaCom chairwoman for the U.K. and Ireland Karen Blackett for the Media Lions.

The 2019 Cannes Lions are scheduled to take place June 17 to 21. Entries to the awards open on January 17, 2019.

The 2019 jury line-up includes two new Lions: the Entertainment Lion for Sport and the Creative Strategy Lions. The Product Design Lion has been retired.

The PR jury president for the 2018 PR Lions was Stuart Smith, executive partner and global leader of PR and influence at Ogilvy.

After criticism that the event is too expensive and has lost touch with the marketing industry, Cannes Lions and parent company Ascential made several changes before the 2018 festival, adding the track system, changing pricing, and shortening the schedule. 

Longtime Cannes executive Terry Savage stepped down as chairman after this year’s Cannes Lions, and was succeeded by Philip Thomas. Ascential hired Edelman in September 2017 to provide strategic communications support as it explains the evolution of the Cannes Lions.

This year's Cannes Lions festival made 9% less revenue than in 2017. Declines in the numbers of delegates and award entries were blamed on both Publicis Groupe sitting out the event and organizers truncating the schedule.

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