Hill+Knowlton Hires New SF GM from the Tech World

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By Patrick Coffee Comment

H+K_Jodi BaumannWe think we might be witnessing a trend: Hill+Knowlton Strategies just announced the hiring of tech veteran Jodi Baumann to run both its San Francisco office and its global tech practice.

Baumann currently serves as senior director of global communications at NetApp, a Sunnydale storage/data company that just happened to appear on the Glassdoor list ranking the “top 25 American companies for culture and value” below Twitter, Edelman and others.

H+K Americas president/CEO Mike Coates gets right at Baumann’s appeal in the press release, writing, “she is so entrenched in both the technology space and the local San Francisco market.”

That’s the same reason that Ketchum acquired Access Communications in 2008 and named its president/CEO Susan Butenhoff to lead its own global tech practice last week.

It also reminded us of DKC PR’s decision to hire AdAge tech reporter/San Francisco bureau chief Cotton Delo as account supervisor back in June.

More Coates from the release:

“It was imperative as we searched for the perfect person to welcome onto our team that it be someone who knows, loves and is well-respected in San Francisco and Silicon Valley.”

Baumann has worked with technology-focused companies since the days when Mike Judge was still just a humble coder who drew a cartoon called Beavis and Butthead in his spare time — and most references to “Silicon Valley” concerned a geological depression rather than a subculture set on ruling the world without ever wearing a tie.

Her specialties are “crisis communications counsel and implementation, reputation management, M&A communications”, or the very things that app creators emboldened by a couple of million-dollar VC injections do not have. She also specialized in integrating content into NetApp’s comms strategy and, prior to joining that company, directed several tech accounts for Weber Shandwick’s San Francisco office.

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