Heather Kernahan replaces Jim Joseph as PR Council chair

Joseph’s place on the PR agency trade association’s board will be taken by BCW’s Chris Foster.

Hotwire's Heather Kernahan assumes interim chair duties at the PR Council following Jim Joseph's resignation.
Hotwire's Heather Kernahan assumes interim chair duties at the PR Council following Jim Joseph's resignation.

NEW YORK - The PR Council has shaken up its board structure in light of former chair Jim Joseph’s resignation as he departs BCW to become North America president at McCann Health.

Hotwire’s Heather Kernahan was unanimously elected interim chair. She was promoted to the newly created role of North America CEO at the agency last December. Before joining Hotwire, Kernahan was president of Eastwick, which Hotwire acquired in 2016.

"In recognition of her engagement and leadership, Heather is the first chair elected who doesn’t represent one of the large global agencies," said PR Council president Kim Sample. "This move also acknowledges the number of boutique, small and midsized firms in our membership."

Long-time council member and former BCW president of brand solutions Joseph was elected to a two-year term as chair last December.

He told PRWeek in January his two major priorities would be member engagement and attracting talent into PR. Ironically, he has now left the industry himself.

The remaining term of the BCW position on the PR firm trade body board through December 2021 will be filled by Chris Foster, president, North America at BCW Global.

APCO Worldwide president and CEO Evan Kraus was elected interim vice-chair, a position that had been vacant as the organization updated its bylaws. Kernahan and Kraus will serve in their new roles until the end of this year.

Michelle Flowers Welch, founder and chairman of Chicago-based Flowers Communications Group is joining the board having taken a seat that opened up earlier this year.

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