PUBLIC SECT0R: Tower Hamlets hires Pierce to head PR

The London Borough of Tower Hamlets has recruited Newham council's deputy head of communications Kate Pierce to lead its PR.

Pierce is to join Tower Hamlets at the end of May as its first permanent head of comms since the departure of Siobhan Crozier late last year (PRWeek, 20 September).

As with Crozier, Pierce will head press and PR, web editing and the weekly newspaper East End Life, as well as handling commercial development, which includes the use of sales advertising in the newspaper.

However, the role no longer has a direct reporting line to the chief executive, with Pierce instead reporting to the adviser to the CEO.

This role, similar to the role other councils call director of corporate services , is currently handled by consultant Lorraine Langham, brought in to review comms in 2001.

Consultant Don Neame, who has been heading PR since Crozier's departure said the council is now looking for a permanent recruit for Langham's role.

Pierce said her areas of special interest regarding local government comms include consultation with residents, particularly young people, and 'making sure local people benefit from investment'.

Pierce joined the London Borough of Newham in 2001, after working at the Association of London Government as principal press and PR officer.

She said that a decision regarding her replacement at Newham had not yet been taken. Her role will be covered in the interim by Rachel Harkes, publications and special project manager.

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