SAN FRANCISCO—Porter Novelli has named Margaret Abeles vice president of West Coast strategic planning. Based in the firm’s San Francisco office, Abeles role is to ensure that client communications strategies and tactics developed are informed by an understanding of business goals. Prior to her position at Porter Novelli, Abeles was the director of market research for a multi-billion dollar division of the Walt Disney Company where she was a key member of the strategy development team and built its market research department. In addition, Abeles held marketing positions at Armor All Products (acquired by Clorox), Lieberman Research, Yardley of London and USA Today.
SUNNYVALE, CA—Verity, a leading provider of enterprise software that enables organizations to maximize the return on their intellectual capital investment, has promoted Derek van Bronkhorst to vice president, corporate marketing. Van Bronkhorst is responsible for corporate and marketing communications, media and analyst relations, all Web presences and advertising. He joined Verity in 2000 from Flexion Systems, a telecommunications equipment supplier, where he served as vice president of global marketing. Before that he was a corporate communications director with Levi Strauss & Company.
CHICAGO—Susan Schreiber Wolfe has joined Golin/Harris International as a senior vice president. Her responsibilities will include leadership of one of the firm’s largest client relationships, McDonald’s. Wolfe comes to Golin/Harris from the U.S. foods division of PepsiCo beverages and food. While there, she developed and directed communications strategies and tactics targeted for consumer education and marketing programs for brands like Quaker Oatmeal, Life and Cap’n Crunch cereals.
SAN FRANCISCO—Panache Communications, a technology public relations agency based in San Francisco, has hired Kathy Stahlman as account supervisor. Stahlman comes to Panache Communications from @Road, a leading provider of wireless-enabled mobile resource management services. Panache also announced the addition of two new clients: @Road and Marsha Shenk, a business anthropologist, trainer and educator. Panache will provide strategic counsel and specialized public relations services to its two new clients.
BOSTON—Greenough Communications has appointed Stephanie Casey, a founding member of the Greenough team, to executive vice president. Casey will continue to lead the agency’s client service and business development efforts in key markets such as information technology, consumer technology and professional services.
SCOTTSDALE, AZ— Howard Christensen, founder and co-chairman of investor relations firm Christensen, is retiring. The firm will continue to operate under the leadership of Rene Vanguestaine, co-chairman and CEO.
IRVINE, CA—BAX Global, a $2 billion supply chain and transportation solutions provider, has named Marie Kroesen Connell as manager, public relations at its worldwide headquarters. In the recently created position, Kroesen Connell will spearhead public relations and media relations activities throughout 133 countries for BAX.