Burson-Marsteller Hires Gavin Newsom’s Former Comm. Director

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By Jason Chupick Comment

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In another high-profile hire by WPP-owned Burson-Marsteller, political heavyweight Nathan Ballard joins the firm as managing director in the San Francisco office.

Ballard was communications director to San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom since November of last year, and was one of a string of high-profile staffers to resign. He returned to his own consultancy, Nathan Ballard Communications (with cool URL: www.earned-media.com) before joining Burson. He brings deep connections to Democratic party politics in California in an inevitable time of change in the state.

Before putting in two years with Newsom, Ballard spent four years consulting to labor unions, nonprofits, law firms, and political candidates and initiatives. Before that, he was the Democratic National Committee’s communications director in California, worked on the John Kerry and Wesley Clark presidential campaigns, and was communications director for the California Labor Federation, AFL-CIO.

Ballard will report to EVP Josh Gottheimer. A spokesperson for Burson tells us Ballard is in negotiations to bring some of his clients with him.