Edelman (www.edelman.com) has announced the appointment of Katie Burke as chair of the global Public Affairs practice, effective July 1, 2013. Burke will report to Alan VanderMolen, vice chairman, DJE Holdings and president & CEO, Global Practices, Edelman. She succeeds Rob Rehg, who will remain president of the Washington, D.C. office, one of the firm’s five global hubs.
Since taking over the D.C. office seven years ago, Rehg has grown the business by 62 percent and helped turn Edelman into a leader in the region.
"Katie’s appointment represents an increased investment from Edelman in public affairs, and a pivot from a multi-local to a global approach," said VanderMolen. "It will also help us build upon our leadership position in Washington, D.C. Our clients will benefit hugely from her political background and strong understanding of the D.C. market."
Burke is currently global chief of staff for Edelman and one of the firm’s top CEO and C-suite strategic advisors. Burke previously led the Public Affairs offering for Edelman New York. She now joins a Public Affairs practice that includes industry thought leaders from around the globe including Rehg, Steve Schmidt, vice chairman of public affairs (California), Cindy Tian (Beijing), Martin Porter (Brussels), Jere Sullivan (Washington, D.C.), Stephen Lock (Indonesia), Chris Rumfitt (London) and Rakesh Thukral (Delhi).
"It is an incredibly exciting time for global public affairs at Edelman," said Burke. "As we continue to both grow our business and invest in this important practice, I can’t wait to partner with our impressive global team as we bring meaningful results to our clients."
Prior to joining Edelman, Burke served as communications director and spokeswoman for presidential and gubernatorial campaigns, as well as a senior member of the White House Communications team. As chief spokeswoman and communications director for the Rudy Giuliani Presidential Campaign, Burke oversaw the press office, rapid response team, war room, regional press operation and national surrogate program. She also served as communications director for Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger’s successful re-election campaign in California.