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Edelman Bolsters Public Affairs Team by Adding Former Senior White House and Senate Staffers

Former White House Communicator Will Lead Media Services and Strategies in DC; Former Senate Finance Committee Communications Director to Lead Financial Communications

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Edelman today announced former special assistant to the President and White House deputy press secretary, Jamie Smith, and former Senate Finance Committee communications director, Sean Neary, are joining Edelman’s Washington, D.C. office.

Smith will serve as executive vice president overseeing media strategies and services for the office, which specializes in public and corporate affairs, issues management and crisis communications. Neary joins Edelman as executive vice president and will manage the firm’s Financial Communications practice in D.C., in close cooperation with teams in New York, Chicago, London and Hong Kong. Both Smith and Neary recently left their government roles.

In the newly created role, Smith will oversee a team of media relations professionals and provide counsel to a range of Edelman clients. She will also manage the office’s expanding “Creative Newsroom” offering, an innovative, real-time, on-demand media relations operation that reaches across traditional, social, owned and hybrid media channels.

“We are pleased to welcome Jamie to the office and to the Edelman network,” said Rob Rehg, president of Edelman Washington, D.C. “She will join a very talented team of strategists and will enhance the breadth and depth of services we offer to our clients. As we continue to make creative newsrooms an integral part of our work with clients, we are fortunate to have Jamie’s experience, energy and smart thinking on our team. We’re thrilled she’s joining us.”

“I am very excited to join the Edelman team and I am honored to have the opportunity to work with so many talented, energetic people who are deeply committed to creative, thoughtful and sophisticated strategic thinking,” said Smith.

Smith most recently served as special assistant to the President and deputy White House press secretary. She previously served as director of Public Affairs for the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI). Before that, she was communications director for U.S. Senator John D. (Jay) Rockefeller IV when he was both chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee and the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation. Smith also served as the traveling press director for the Hillary Clinton for President Campaign, communications director for former Secretary of State Madeleine K. Albright and The Albright Group, Legislative Aide to Congresswoman Nita M. Lowey and operations manager for Issue Advocacy at the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. Smith is from Buffalo Grove, Illinois, and a graduate of Kenyon College.

Of Neary’s hire, Rehg said, “Sean’s experience and knowledge of key financial services issues will be critical for our clients. As a result of his work on the Senate Finance Committee, Sean brings additional expertise to support our healthcare and international trade teams, and excellent relationships in New York and Washington D.C. We are very excited to have him on the team.”

“Edelman is a power house in the arena of strategic communications, with a long record of accomplishments and the proven ability to get the job done,” said Neary. “I’m excited by the opportunity to be part of the Edelman team.”

Prior to joining Edelman, Neary was a senior advisor to Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus and chief communications strategist for the committee, which is considered to be the most powerful committee in the Senate, with jurisdiction over tax, trade and health policy. He is a former communications director to U.S. Senator Kent Conrad; a former editorial director at America’s Promise and at Dittus Communications; and he has also worked in editorial capacities at Voter.com, George magazine and Rolling Stone. He works as a freelance writer and has contributed to numerous books. He is a graduate of the University of Delaware and has studied at New York University.

About Edelman
Edelman is the world’s largest public relations firm, with 67 offices and more than 4,800 employees worldwide, as well as affiliates in more than 30 cities. Edelman was named Advertising Age’s top-ranked PR firm of the decade in 2009 and one of its “A-List Agencies” in both 2010 and 2011; Adweek’s “2011 PR Agency of the Year;” PRWeek’s “2011 Large PR Agency of the Year;” and The Holmes Report’s “2013 Global Agency of the Year” and its 2012 “Digital Agency of the Year.” Edelman was named one of the “Best Places to Work” by Advertising Age in 2010 and 2012 and among Glassdoor’s top ten “Best Places to Work” in 2011 and 2012. Edelman owns specialty firms Edelman Berland (research), Blue (advertising), BioScience Communications (medical communications), and agencies Edelman Significa (Brazil), and Pegasus (China).

For more information, contact:
Michael Bush
michael.bush@edelman.com

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