Omnicom PR Group’s David Gallagher to depart

David Gallagher, international president for growth and development at Omnicom PR Group (OPRG) and a veteran of the holding company and of its PR agency Ketchum, is leaving the business for “a leap into the great unknown.” His role has included overseeing the consolidation of the holding company’s PR agencies – Ketchum, FleishmanHillard and Porter Novelli – into OPRG in several markets.

Gallagher was previously Ketchum partner and European CEO, and prior to that he ran the agency’s London office and served as head of its European healthcare practice. He joined Ketchum in Europe in 2000, after running the agency’s healthcare group in Washington, D.C. since 1994.

Gallagher tweeted today that he is “leaving Omnicom this year to see if there’s another act left in my career”.

“This is my 3rd such leap. 1st in Texas, boarding my second-ever flight on a one-way ticket to Washington, DC with $200 and a résumé. That was on my own, and worked out ok, eventually.

“Second, packing up and moving to London, a place I’d visited only once before, to take on a European role covering a region I had never seen. That was with a young family and it didn’t go too badly, either.

“And now, a leap from Omnicom into the great unknown. No idea what’s on the other side, but I can no longer ignore the call to explore. This time, with an entire global community of friends, colleagues and mentors around me.

“As work experiences go my time at Ketchum and with the agencies in the group – including those we started anew – I hit the jackpot. I can never thank all of the friends, colleagues, clients & guides for the wisdom and patience given along the way, but I’ll try when I see u next!”

Gallagher is to depart on 1 October. His role will be covered on an interim basis by Olivier Beheydt, COO for FleishmanHillard EMEA.

In an internal memo, OPRG CEO Chris Foster, who has been in the role since June, said: “I first met David six or seven years ago when we both spoke on a panel at a conference in Stockholm, Sweden, and we found ourselves in vehement agreement on the need for continuous improvement in the areas of research, measurement and data analytics.

“His outspoken presence there was emblematic of his commitment to the development of our business and the wider communications industry, and reflected in the many roles he as served both inside OPRG and externally as a volunteer leader.”


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