NEW YORK— Porter Novelli has ended its lengthy search for a global consumer practice leader, hiring Christina Cea to rejoin the firm.

Cea was Unilever senior director of marketing communications for eight years after departing Porter Novelli in 2006. She previously worked for the Omnicom PR firm in New York and London, where she led the UK consumer practice.

"We are thrilled to welcome Christine back to the Porter Novelli family," said Porter Novelli global CEO Karen van Bergen, to whom Cea will report. "She brings an extraordinary depth and breadth of brand marketing and consumer lifestyle experience to this important role, and her deep knowledge and expertise in this industry will be invaluable to our clients and our team."

Christine Cea

The newly-created role calls for Cea to provide senior counsel for consumer brand marketing clients and teams at Porter Novelli, and be responsible for business growth and overseeing the firm's consumer talent.

"I am energized by the possibilities of this global leadership role in contributing to Porter Novelli’s success in delivering business impact for client partners," said Cea. "The opportunity to work with a fantastic team on iconic brands combined with the agency’s insights-driven marketing communications greatly excites me."