Channel 4 has drafted in headhunters to fill its top corporate affairs
The pounds 70,000-a-year post head of corporate affairs has been vacant
for several months, following the resignation of Caroline Thomson. She
announced in January that she would be leaving Channel 4 to take on the
role of strategy and corporate affairs director at BBC Worldwide.
Freelance consultant Peter Ibbotson, former director of corporate
affairs at Carlton Television, has since filled Thomson’s role
temporarily, reporting to Channel 4 chief executive Michael Grade and
the station’s director and general manager Frank McGettigan. He will
continue to work on a part-time basis handling parliamentary work.
The brief for the job includes speech writing for Grade and other senior
Channel 4 executives, lobbying, and scripting position papers on
The station is currently lobbying the Government to end Channel 4’s
subsidy of ITV companies which has resulted from its strong ratings and
advertising performance. At the same time, Grade continues to be viewed
as a trenchant and persistent critic of the Government’s overall
The post will also involve overseeing Channel 4’s extensive press
office operation managed by the station’s head of press Chris Griffen-
‘It’s a fabulous job,’ according to one TV public relations specialist.
‘At the moment Channel 4 has plenty of money, and the post involves
working closely with the widely admired Michael Grade. The press office
there can largely run itself. Bearing that in mind, it’s going to
involve a lot of lobbying and fixing.’
He added: ‘Whoever gets the job will have to be quick on their feet.’