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Chief Diversity Officer Roundtable Featuring Fortune’s Ruth Umoh

March 19, 2024

Who: Chief Diversity Officers of Fortune 500 Companies

When: Thursday, April 25, 2024, 9-11 a.m. EDT

Where: 195 Broadway, 8th Floor, New York, NY 10007

RSVP required* by April 18, 2024. Send to [email protected].

FleishmanHillard, one of the world’s leading communications and marketing agencies, is hosting an exclusive roundtable gathering of Chief Diversity O­fficers from notable Fortune 500 companies. Featuring Fortune’s Ruth Umoh, this event will explore some of the greatest challenges in diversity, equity, and inclusion (DE&I) facing companies today as well as what lies ahead and how they can prepare.

Conducted under Chatham House Rule, this candid and open conversation will be directly targeted to an audience of C-Suite diversity leaders—those who are committed to enhancing or sustaining their current DE&I efforts and building support among key stakeholders. Please note that insights from the conversation may be used for an upcoming Fortune raceAhead newsletter without identifying sources.

Participants will also hear from DE&I leaders and expert counselors from FleishmanHillard who are working with global companies and organizations to transform DE&I into a centerpiece for reputation.

Key Speakers:

Ruth Umoh

Ruth Umoh is an Editor at Fortune, overseeing its executive leadership and management coverage. She also authors the raceAhead newsletter, an essential resource for those seeking to deepen their understanding of race-related issues and drive meaningful change in the workplace and beyond.

Adrianne C. Smith

Adrianne C. Smith is the Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer at FleishmanHillard. She helps drive the organization’s mission to become the most inclusive agency in the world.

Join us for a roundtable with your peers and Fortune Editor Ruth Umoh. Please send a note to [email protected] to register your interest* by April 18, 2024.

*Please note, a RSVP itself does not guarantee access to the event. We encourage you to share this invite with other C-Suite diversity leaders in your network working at a top company.


FleishmanHillard Named Three-Time Finalist at 2024 Anvil Awards

March 8, 2024

ST. LOUIS, MO — FleishmanHillard earned three nominations for the 2024 PRSA Anvil Awards on behalf of client work with Krispy Kreme Doughnuts and WaterWipes. The global PR and communications agency was recognized for outstanding client work including:

  • WaterWipes with FleishmanHillard, “Hallowclean” (Silver Anvil Marketing > Consumer Products National Focus)
  • WaterWipes with FleishmanHillard, “Hallowclean” (Bronze Anvil > Paid Promotions)
  • Krispy Kreme Doughnuts with FleishmanHillard, “Krispy Kreme Doughnuts Turns Losing Lottery Tickets into Dough” (Bronze Anvil Tactical Award > Media Relations > Consumer Services)

Celebrating their 80th year, the Anvil Awards are presented by the Public Relations Society of America and celebrate the best strategic public relations campaigns each year, as well as outstanding organizational excellence.

Winners will be revealed at a ceremony at the Edison Ballroom in New York City on May 9th. Find the full list of winners here.


Ryo Kanayama Appointed President of FleishmanHillard’s Japan Group

January 30, 2024

ST. LOUIS, MOFleishmanHillard today announced the appointment of Ryo Kanayama to president of FleishmanHillard’s Japan Group of companies, including FleishmanHillard Japan and VOX Global Japan.

“We’re thrilled to have Ryo return to FleishmanHillard in this role and help grow the agencies,” said Joanne Wong, FleishmanHillard APAC president. “Ryo has extensive experience driving transformation and societal change working with businesses, non-profits, governmental entities and local communities. With his experience both in-house and within consultancies, Ryo can effectively lead and coach our own team, as well as our clients, to advance the use of communications as a strategic and effective business problem-solving tool to drive desired outcomes. Ryo recognizes how such outcome-oriented, value-focused communications offerings enable us a competitive and distinct proposition to capture evolving market opportunities in Japan.” 

Kanayama returns to FleishmanHillard after serving as a partner at Deloitte Japan (also known as Deloitte Tohmatsu Group) for its Clients & Industries and Brand Marketing groups. He originally joined the agency in 1999 and was a key leader in conceptualizing and advocating for a strategic communications model in Japan. During his eight-year tenure, he also led the Corporate Reputation and Issues Management practice before moving to the corporate world to lead the Corporate Affairs function at Walmart Japan and Seiyu.

“I look forward to collaborating with our team to take the business to its next stage of growth,” said Kanayama. “Japan continues to play a critical role on the world’s stage and the evolving business and market environments require both local insights and connectivity to global offerings. FleishmanHillard and VOX Japan are well-positioned to respond to growing outbound and inbound client needs in corporate reputation, public affairs, financial communications and special situations.”

Continuing to support the agencies will be managing directors Atsuko Kamegaya and Ryoji Tanabe, who will report to Kanayama and form the operations’ core leadership team. Shin Tanaka, founding president of FleishmanHillard Japan, will act as a senior advisor to offer senior counsel and advice to clients.

The appointment takes place as FleishmanHillard Japan embarks on a new chapter of growth, helping clients navigate post-pandemic transformations. Connecting clients with FleishmanHillard’s global and regional network, the agency will deliver data-driven communications expertise to clients across borders and help them identify and effectively engage their stakeholders.

Kanayama received a Bachelor of Arts, Law, from The University of Tokyo and a Master of Business Administration degree from the University of Virginia Darden School of Business. He will begin the position on April 1, with his departure from Deloitte at the end of March.


FleishmanHillard Hires Hugh Taggart as CEO of FleishmanHillard in the UK

January 10, 2024

ST. LOUIS, MOFleishmanHillard today announced the appointment of Hugh Taggart to CEO of the agency’s UK operations starting February 21.

“We have an incredible business in the UK, with real breadth and substance, and a truly exceptional culture,” said John Saunders, FleishmanHillard president and CEO. “London will always be a critical market for FleishmanHillard and we believe Hugh is the ideal leader to follow the terrific growth achieved under Jim Donaldson and help deliver on our future plans.

“We’re delighted to get someone of Hugh’s calibre to the firm. In Hugh we have gained a dynamic leader with a hugely impressive track record of improving teams, developing talent and growing businesses. He will bring gravitas, energy and sharpness to our UK team and will add real depth to our global leadership.

“In addition to his business acumen, Hugh brings a wealth of experience leading integrated teams and advising CEOs and other leaders on a range of business-critical matters. This will be invaluable to our major clients at a time when brands are faced with an increasingly complex set of issues to navigate. We’re excited to welcome Hugh to FleishmanHillard and look forward to him starting soon.”

Taggart joins FleishmanHillard after more than five years in leadership positions with Edelman, most recently as the UK’s co-CEO where he led some 650 people and oversaw a period of rapid growth in the UK. He also served as Edelman’s global chair of Issues & Crisis and previously led Edelman’s EMEA Corporate Affairs practice. During this period, Taggart also sat on the PRCA’s board of directors.

Of his appointment, Taggart said: “It’s a real thrill to be joining such an iconic agency and professionally run organisation. I’ve always admired FleishmanHillard from afar and held them in high regard when coming up against them. However, what is most exciting is joining an agency with such ambitious plans. The UK is a particularly competitive market, but FleishmanHillard has a great platform from which it can grow and I’m looking forward to helping the agency unlock all of its potential.”


Climate Commitments, Action and Challenges to Come: FleishmanHillard Takeaways from COP28

December 20, 2023
By Michael Hartt, Maximo Miccinilli, Kathy Chung and Wang Yang

The 28th Conference of the Parties (COP28), hosted in Dubai from November 30 to December 13, 2023, marked a pivotal gathering of government leaders, multilateral organizations, scientific experts and corporate stakeholders, all driven by the urgency to address climate mitigation and adaptation. After two weeks of intense negotiations characterized at times by debate and division, nearly 200 Parties reached a new climate deal at COP28. The implications of this Global Stocktake – the midway point from the 2015 Paris Agreement to its 2030 targets – will be significant for companies addressing disparate legal and regulatory frameworks, managing political expectations, and communicating with stakeholders and the public about climate action.

Key takeaways from COP28 include:

1. Major Agreements and Commitments

  • Agreeing the UAE Consensus: COP28 participants unanimously adopted the UAE Consensus, the new climate framework that outlines targets and actions to limit global temperature rise to 1.5°C and accelerate emissions reductions.
  • Transitioning Away from Fossil Fuels: A highly debated issue revolved around the inclusion of a fossil fuel phase-out in the agreement. Ultimately, the decision was made to endorse a commitment to “transition away” from fossil fuels. While this marks the first use of the term “fossil fuel” in a COP agreement and is seen as a historic achievement in recognizing the role of fossil fuels in driving climate change, some scientists, climate advocates and government leaders deemed it unacceptable for not going all the way to a complete “phase out” of fossil fuels.

2. Energy Transition Pathways

  • Renewable Energy Transition: COP28 witnessed several countries pledging to transition to renewable energy sources and phase out coal, complete with specific timelines and goals that mean tripling renewable deployment by 2030 under the Global Pledge on Renewables and Energy Efficiency. However, the final agreement recognized the role of “transitional fuels,” typically meaning gas, which burns cleaner than oil or coal. This was a significant win for the gas industry and prompted questions about the speed and scale of a transition away from natural gas and LNG.
  • Tripling Nuclear Energy Capacity: One of the key developments at COP28 was the agreement by 22 countries, including the United States, France, Japan, South Korea, Sweden and the United Kingdom, to triple their nuclear energy capacity from 417 gigawatts in 2022 to over 900 gigawatts by 2050. This move recognizes the role of nuclear energy in achieving the 1.5C target for some countries, though nuclear continues to face resistance in countries like Germany. Under the pledge, countries will adopt several measures, including extending the life of existing nuclear reactors and build both new large-scale reactors and advanced small modular reactors (SMR).

3. Climate Finance Commitments

  • Breakthrough on Loss and Damage Funding: After strong efforts by lower- and middle-income countries and vulnerable countries to build on promises at previous COPs, COP28 saw the major breakthrough: Large donations by the UAE, United States, United Kingdom, Germany and others to a loss and damage fund. This fund will provide support for unavoidable climate impacts, such as extreme weather events and rising seas – though skeptics assert it provides a small fraction of the amounts required to address needs.

4. Food Systems and Food Security Declaration

  • Declaration on Food Systems: For the first time, COP attendees examined the connection between food systems and climate, from the relationship between current food demand and carbon emissions to the ways to improve food security amidst climate-driven extreme weather incidents and long-term weather changes. The Declaration on Sustainable Agriculture, Resilient Food Systems and Climate Action emphasizes resilience, food security and resource efficiency, with a special focus on water.

5. Policy and Regulatory Updates

  • Carbon Pricing Initiatives: Several nations discussed plans to implement carbon pricing mechanisms and carbon trading systems, but debates around the creation of a supervisory body was not resolved and the permanence of carbon reductions and removals were not resolved. This leaves implementation of the Paris Agreement’s carbon trading provisions in an uncertain position at the halfway point to 2030.
  • Stringent Emissions Reduction Targets: COP28 introduced new, more stringent emissions reduction targets for various sectors, signifying a need for potential adjustments in companies’ sustainability strategies. The Global Methane Pledge (GMP) is one of the most important examples by aiming to cut anthropogenic methane emissions by at least 30% by 2030 from 2020 levels. Another example is the global commitment, endorsed by the World Cement Association, to set intermediate targets to support a sustainable cement and concrete industry, encouraging technical development and innovation by its members to help achieve full decarbonization by 2050.

The wide range of topics addressed at COP28 will create expectations – and in some cases mandates – for businesses from a range of sectors to take greater and faster action. While media coverage focused on heavy emitting industries like energy, the impact of the renewable transition will be felt across supply chains. Businesses will need to review their targets and plans, particularly with countries required to submit updated climate plans in 2025 and the continued pressure for improvement by 2030.

The final COP28 agreement represents an unprecedented global consensus to transition away from fossil fuels, which have long been the primary driver of the climate crisis. This historic agreement, reached after 28 years of international climate negotiations, undoubtedly marks a significant step forward. However, it also prompted a sense of bittersweet victory, with some arguing that it falls short of the more decisive phase out of fossil fuels that many had hoped for.

With elections scheduled in over 70 countries in 2024, the political landscape remains dynamic and the fate of climate policies remains uncertain. Green initiatives have faced criticism over their cost and burden upon the public, with risk of being rolled back in several major economies. Simultaneously, the EU will push forward with its aggressive plans for carbon reduction – meaning companies will need to manage diverse political interests simultaneously.

COP28 serves as both a cause for celebration and a call to action. It highlights the progress made in recognizing the urgency of the climate crisis, but also the formidable challenges that persist in transitioning to a sustainable future. As organizations move forward, it is imperative that they remain committed to pushing for more ambitious climate goals and holding leaders accountable for their promises. The road ahead is long and challenging, but the stakes have never been higher, and the need for decisive action has never been more apparent.


FleishmanHillard Makes 2024 PRWeek US Awards Shortlist in Multiple Categories Including Outstanding Extra-Large Agency and Agency Dynasty of the Last 25 Years

December 14, 2023

After taking home the award the past two years, FleishmanHillard was named as a finalist in the Outstanding Extra-Large Agency category of the 2024 PRWeek US Awards. The global agency was also nominated in the new Agency Dynasty of the Last 25 Years category, as well as a nod for Best in Healthcare for client work with Johnson & Johnson.

  • FleishmanHillard (Outstanding Extra-Large Agency)
  • FleishmanHillard (Agency Dynasty of the Last 25 Years)
  • Johnson & Johnson Innovative Medicine and FleishmanHillard, “Save Legs. Change Lives. Spot Peripheral Artery Disease Now” (Best in Healthcare)

The PRWeek US Awards spotlight excellence and leadership in the communications industry. The program celebrates the best corporate, agency, non-profit and education teams and the work they produce.

Winners will be announced at a ceremony on March 14th in New York City. Get the full list of winners here.


FleishmanHillard Takes Home Agency of the Year Award During Big Night at 2023 ICCO Global Awards

November 30, 2023

ST. LOUIS, MO — FleishmanHillard took home a win for Large Agency of the Year – The Americas at last night’s 2023 ICCO Global Awards ceremony in London. The global public relations agency also celebrated wins for client work with Akamai and Icelandair:

  • FleishmanHillard (Large Agency of the Year – The Americas)
  • Akamai with FleishmanHillard, “From bandwidth to bad actors: Positioning Akamai at the cutting-edge of cybersecurity” (Best Corporate and Finance)
  • Icelandair with FleishmanHillard, “Iceland Around the Corner” (Event, Launch or Stunt Campaign)

In addition, Jim Donaldson, FleishmanHillard regional director of EMEA and CEO of the UK and Middle East region, was recognized for his contributions to the industry by being inducted into the ICCO Hall of Fame.

This recognition tops off a year of incredible agency award wins including Outstanding Extra-Large Agency and Agency of the Year from PRWeek US, Agency of the Year at Campaign US and Campaign Global, Agency of the Year from the Public Relations Institute of Ireland and PR Agency of the Year from the Korea PR Association.

The ICCO Global Awards are recognized worldwide by PR trade associations representing 82 countries. The awards recognize excellence and effectiveness of PR work across the world and are judged by a panel of international PR and communications professionals. Find more information about the awards.


FleishmanHillard Nominated in Three Categories as 2023 ICCO Global Awards Shortlist is Revealed

November 2, 2023

ST. LOUIS, MOFleishmanHillard received nominations in three categories, including Agency of the Year (Large), on the 2023 ICCO Global Awards shortlist, which was released this week. The global agency was also recognized in two other categories on behalf of client work.

The International Communications Consultancy Organisation (ICCO) Global Awards spotlight excellent professional achievement in public relations and communications campaigns. They are recognized by 40 PR associations around the world, representing 82 countries. Winners will be announced at a ceremony in London on November 29th. For a full list of nominees, click here.


FleishmanHillard CEO John Saunders Awarded the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy

October 26, 2023

John Saunders, FleishmanHillard president and CEO, was today conferred with the degree of Doctor of Philosophy (Honoris Causa) from Dublin City University (DCU) in Dublin, Ireland. He is the first public relations communicator to receive this recognition from the University. The convocation was a part of DCU’s Autumn Graduation Ceremony for students from the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences.

In remarks at the ceremony, John was recognized as one of Ireland’s Communications pioneers, a global leader in the public relations field and a noted supporter of equality, diversity and inclusion in the workplace. He joins an esteemed group who have received the recognition, including Mother Teresa and former U.S. President Bill Clinton.

John is only the fourth CEO in the history of the 77-year-old global agency. From 2011, he was Regional President for Europe, Middle East and Africa. He was previously Regional President for Continental Europe and Eurasia, having been named as Regional Director for Europe in 2004. Before assuming his regional leadership positions, John was Managing Director at FleishmanHillard Saunders. He founded that business in 1990 and grew it into Ireland’s largest public relations consultancy and one of FleishmanHillard’s most successful international offices before selling it to Omnicom in 2001. He began his career as a sports presenter with RTE – Ireland’s national state broadcaster.

DCU is a global leader – ranking No. 1 for Communications and Media Studies in Ireland and in the Top 200 of almost 4,500 universities worldwide. More on John’s honorary degree and the ceremony is available on the University’s website.


FleishmanHillard’s Future of Asset Management: Global Report 2023 Finds that Three-Fourths of Retail Investors Around the World Value ESG Commitments When Choosing an Asset Manager

AI, ESG and DE&I Among Top Investor Considerations

ST. LOUISFleishmanHillard today launched The Future of Asset Management: Global Report 2023. The new report examines the communications trends shaping retail investor perceptions, along with the expectations of the global asset management industry amid market volatility and the rapidly changing landscape of how and from whom investors get investment information and advice.

Based on a survey of more than 2,000 retail investors in the United States, Europe and Asia Pacific, the report finds that artificial intelligence (AI), environment, social and governance (ESG), diversity, equity and inclusion (DE&I) and transparency are among the top considerations for investors.

“The asset management industry has been going through a period of unprecedented change,” said Thomas J. Laughran, senior vice president and partner, Financial and Professional Services practice lead. “Markets have been buffeted by first the pandemic and then rising interest rate shocks. Cultural and regulatory shifts have focused greater attention on ESG, DE&I and how investments are marketed and deployed. Information sources and investment management options have proliferated as a result of technology and social media.

“Around the world, investor expectations of how, when, where and why they engage with investment and financial services’ providers are continuously evolving in this dynamic environment. Amid the uncertainty, investors across the globe are increasingly seeking transparency, authenticity and accessibility in how the industry engages, informs and communicates with them.”

Among the key findings by region:

United States

  • Despite a contentious political climate, more than three quarters (78%) of U.S. investors cite DE&I policies and commitment as important considerations in selecting a financial advisor. More than two thirds (73%) expect clear and transparent ESG policies, goals and commitments to be public and accessible.
  • Though the use of ChatGPT/AI may still be in its infancy for retail investors, some 60% of U.S. investors say they have already used ChatGPT or AI tools for investment-related decisions.
  • More than 90% of U.S. investors select performance and credibility as driving factors in selecting a financial advisor, on par with transparency in communication and fees.
  • For U.S. investors, news and financial media are the most common sources for information on investment funds and products, outweighing even financial advisors and asset managers.


  • In Germany, France and the UK, investor appetite in the AI sector is high, attracting more interest than all other sectors. However, use of AI tools in investing lags, especially in the UK where just 28% of investors have used AI tools, lowest among all the markets surveyed.
  • European investors place great importance in ESG considerations and are particularly wary of false claims or promises. Approximately three-quarters of European investors say they won’t invest in companies alleged to be engaged in greenwashing.
  • Although over half of respondents in the UK say they manage their own investments, just 7% say that they are “very knowledgeable.”
  • In contrast to their U.S. counterparts, European investors are more likely to turn to financial advisors to inform their investment strategy, with brand/reputation and performance scoring as the most important factors in their choice of an asset manager.

Asia Pacific

  • Inflation/stagflation and geopolitical tensions are the biggest concerns among investors across the four Asia Pacific markets (China, Hong Kong, Singapore and South Korea) surveyed. Investors in South Korea and China are less likely than their Hong Kong and Singapore counterparts to reduce their risk appetite in response to business activities resuming after the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Nearly half of respondents across the Asia Pacific market turn to social media as a trusted source of financial information, higher than U.S. or European investors, while online platforms slightly edged out financial advisors and banks in most markets for sources for investment management.
  • ESG considerations are on the rise across Asia Pacific with large majorities of investors in each market eschewing investment in companies that engage in greenwashing, are accused of violating human rights or fail to live up to their ESG commitments.

FleishmanHillard’s The Future of Asset Management: Global Report 2023 includes qualitative and quantitative data. FleishmanHillard TRUE Global Intelligence fielded an online survey of 2,000 investment professionals in mainland China, the Hong Kong SAR, Singapore, South Korea, France, Germany, UK and United States between April 27 and June 6, 2023.