Knight takes up the role on 9 November from the Royal College of Nursing (RCN), where she is acting senior parliamentary officer, and will report to head of internal and external relations Graham Capper.
The role has both a PR and public affairs remit and will give Knight responsibility for external relations strategy. She will also provide briefings on health regulations and political issues.
Knight has been in her RCN post for two years, but the job was temporary due to an ongoing restructure.
As a director at Citigate, Ford reports to managing director Janet Rafferty.