PURCHASE, NY—PepsiCo has hired Jim Wilkinson as executive vice president, communications. He will report to PepsiCo chairman and CEO Indra Nooyi and will lead the company's global communications team, working across the company to enhance and promote PepsiCo.
Wilkinson joins PepsiCo from corporate and financial communications specialist Brunswick Group, where he has served as managing partner since 2009, providing strategic counsel on corporate reputation, investor relations, crisis management and litigation issues. Prior to Brunswick Group, Wilkinson was chief of staff for U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, serving as senior strategist and counselor, and working on matters of financial policy and crisis management.
Wilkinson takes over the senior communications position, which has been open since the departure earlier this year of Tim Cost, executive vice president of corporate affairs, and Julie Hamp, senior vice president of consumer relations and chief communications officer. Under Nooyi’s leadership, Pepsico has been seeking to expand into healthier products beyond its core soda and snacks business, but has been criticized for underinvesting in its best known brands.
Prior to his work for Treasury, Wilkinson served as senior advisor to US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, and in The White House as deputy national security advisor for communications. Earlier, he was director of strategic communications for General Tommy Franks at U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM), and from 2000-2001 served in The White House as deputy director of communications.