Exclusive: Former CCHQ chief of staff returns to APCO Worldwide

Former CCHQ director of external relations and chief of staff to the chairman of the Conservative Party, Zoe Thorogood, is to return to APCO Worldwide as a senior director later this month, PRWeek can reveal.

Zoe Thorogood is to return to the ranks of APCO Worldwide to lead its crisis and issues offer

Thorogood was at CCHQ for more than a year but left her role when former Conservative Party chairman Brandon Lewis moved to the Home Office during Boris Johnson's Cabinet reshuffle in the summer.

She previously served as a director in both APCO's Washington DC and London offices, and will return to lead on its issues and crisis offer.

Commenting on her return to the fold, Steve Earl, managing director of APCO's London business, said: "Zoe will bring unmatchable expertise and experience to APCO, having been in the thick of some of the most tumultuous times in the UK's recent political history and led on communications counsel in an ever-evolving environment."

Earl added: "As our crisis and issues lead in the UK, she will enable clients to benefit from her long track record in communications and her most recent work at the sharp end of political communications."

Previous experience

Thorogood's 17-year career has encompassed political comms, government and journalism, as well as crisis management.

She previously served as a special advisor to Sir Eric Pickles, Secretary of State for the Department of Communities and Local Government, where she led comms strategy across all the department's policy areas, including housing and local government.

Thorogood also worked as a campaign press advisor to former Prime Minister David Cameron during the 2015 general election campaign, as well as for the Conservative Party ahead of the 2010 general election.

She began her career in journalism as a news editor for GMTV.

Commenting on her new role at APCO Worldwide, Thorogood said: "I am delighted to be reunited with my brilliant colleagues at APCO and I look forward to collaborating with a diverse team of professionals across APCO's well-established global network."

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