IRVINE, CA—Mazda North American Operations has named Danica Laub as communications specialist, reporting to Jeremy Barnes, group manager of product communications. Laub will serve as a media contact for North American media on issues relating to Mazda’s current and future vehicles, corporate marketing, event communications and Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca events. Laub joins Mazda from Ketchum public relations in Venice, Cal., where she worked in product and corporate communications for Hyundai Motor America. Prior to that, she worked with Motor Trend Auto Shows, where she helped develop public relations campaigns, broadcast advertising, and special events for new-model auto shows.
WESTPORT, CT—Financial communications specialist Integrated Corporate Relations has hired Jacqueline Kolek as a senior vice president in its corporate communications group. Kolek will work with clients in the renewable energy, financial services and healthcare sectors. Kolek most recently served as partner and senior director of Peppercom, where she led accounts such as General Electric, Genworth Financial, Tyco International, InformationWeek magazine and Mercer Delta Consulting.
ATLANTA—Consumer products company Newell Rubbermaid realigned duties and responsibilities in its investor relations and corporate communications departments. Investor relations will come under the leadership of Ron Hardnock, currently vice president and corporate controller, who will become vice president of investor relations, reporting to Pat Robinson, chief financial officer. The corporate communications department will be led by Todd Helms, currently vice president of corporate human resources. Helms will continue to report to Jim Sweet, vice president and chief human resources officer.
TORONTO—Manning Selvage & Lee’s Toronto office has expanded its management team by promoting consumer practice leader Krista Webster to creative director, and appointing Susan Tyndall to senior vice president and consumer practice leader. Webster has successfully led the consumer and consumer wellness practice for three years. As creative director, Webster, who has pioneered innovative communications programs for youth, women’s, men’s, healthcare and pet products, will oversee an expansion in MS&L’s influencer and engagement capabilities, including new media, influencer outreach, direct to consumer, word of mouth and buzz marketing. She will also continue to provide strategic and creative counsel on several accounts.
PARIS—Carol Pender has been promoted to head of Johnson King France. She will manage the office and develop existing and new business. She will also continue to oversee French PR activities for three of the agency’s pan-European accounts: Aruba Networks, Mirapoint and Packeteer. Pender joined Johnson King five years ago, and has played a major role in the company’s success and growth in the French market. She replaces Nadine Lang, who is leaving Johnson King after six years with the company to pursue a business venture outside the PR industry.
CHICAGO—Paul Leinberger has joined ComBlu on an of counsel basis as part of the firm’s senior management team. He will help clients incorporate word-of-mouth and advocacy strategies into their integrated branding campaigns. Prior to joining ComBlu, Leinberger was working as an independent consultant and completing his second book. Previously he was senior vice president of GfK NOP, where he was the global director of the market opportunity center of excellence.
LOS ANGELES—Rogers & Cowan has promoted Jason Padgitt to the position of vice president. He will continue to develop and manage a wide variety of publicity campaigns for major music brands, recording artists, record labels, music associations and entertainment events. His clients have included Gibson Guitar Corp., Baldwin Piano and StubHub as well as recording artists such as Hilary Duff, Randy Travis and Jerry Lee Lewis.
DENVER—JohnstonWells Public Relations has named Elizabeth Baugher counselor. She is a former employee of Center Reach Communications, which was acquired by JohnstonWells in September. Steve Lommele, senior associate, joins JohnstonWells after four years with the Van Heyst Group in Boulder, Colo.
GLENDORA, CA—Michael Padian has been named public relations manager for the National Hot Rod Association. He was previously media relations manager. In his new position, Padian will work closely with national media outlets to create awareness and cultivate interest for a variety of national level story opportunities and will continue to provide advance media work for several NHRA events.
ALBANY, NY—Eric Mower & Associates has added two communications professionals to its growing public affairs practice. Ruth Fein Wallens as senior account supervisor, and Saleem Cheeks as account supervisor. In addition, Emily DeSantisc has been named promoted to senior account executive.