1. Christine Heffernan – Group communications director, Tesco
Heffernan succeeded Jane Lawrie in the top comms role at Britain’s biggest supermarket group a year ago.
2. Peter Cross – Customer experience director, John Lewis Partnership
With his role also encompassing customer experience, Cross arguably personifies the modern, multifaceted comms chief in customer-facing industries – and the retailer’s Christmas campaign launch remains a huge talking point.
3. Rebecca Reilly – Group head of external comms, Sainsbury’s
Reilly oversees consumer PR as well as corporate comms at the UK’s second-biggest supermarket group.
4. Victoria McKenzie-Gould – Corporate comms director, Marks & Spencer
The former special adviser to Tony Blair has a CV to rival anyone in her field. Joining from Britvic, her notable former roles include government relations director at Tesco.
5. Julian Bailey – PR director, Morrisons
Bailey joined the UK’s fourth-biggest supermarket chain in 2011 and was promoted to PR director in 2015.
6. Keith Hann – Director of corporate affairs, Iceland
The retailer has had a quieter period in the media since 2018, when its environmental campaigning – in particular the ‘banned’ anti-palm oil video – proved a big talking point.
7. Russ Brady – Head of group public relations, The Co-operative Group
Brady recently completed 20 years at The Co-op, and has helped steer the organisation’s comms through a turbulent decade.
8. Georgina Hall – Head of communications, Lidl
The national discount supermarket group, which has more than 760 UK stores, runs through Hall’s veins – she joined in 2009 as a graduate trainee and progressed to the top comms role in 2017.
9. Richard Thornton – Communications director, Aldi
Aldi is the biggest of the nation’s budget supermarkets, which have redefined grocery shopping for many in recent years.
10. Nigel Cope – Head of media relations, Kingfisher
Cope oversees group-wide communications, spanning nine countries, for the listed owner of B&Q and Screwfix.
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