Roll Call: Burson-Marsteller, Lippincott, Fingerpaint, and More

Burson-Marsteller announced the promotion of Nicole Cornish to the position of chief operating officer for the North American region. Prior to today’s announcement, Cornish simultaneously served as CEO of the agency’s “grassroots operation” Direct Impact and SVP of its North American operations. The release tells us that her primary focus as COO will be talent retention and recruitment; she will report directly to US CEO Michael Law, and EVP Connie Partoyan will assume the role of President at Direct Impact, which is currently looking for a new CEO.

Cornish, who operates out of Washington, D.C., has spent well over a decade with the B-M organization, first as a manager of brand marketing. She joined Direct Impact in 2003 and was named CEO in 2012. She previously spent more than two years as an account supervisor at Edelman.

Branding firm Lippincott expanded its executive team with the hiring of Cory Cruser as partner in its experience innovation practice. Cruser joins the firm from digital ad/marketing agency Razorfish, where he served as group director and lead of the data-driven marketing. Prior to joining Razorfish, he served as a manager/strategic consultant at professional services firm Ernst & Young.

The release tells us that Cruser’s duties at Lippincott will include insights regarding its digital services; his resume includes extensive work in the user experience field including establishment/management of data analysis and innovation capabilities. (Link)

New York agency Fingerpaint acquired thirteen-year-old Phoenix firm Olson Communications, which will be part of the Fingerpaint organization moving forward. Fingerpaint specialized in strategic marketing before the announcement, and now it can add public relations to its array of services. Agency founder Ed Mitzen notes that the acquisition helps satisfy two of the agency’s goals: adding communications capabilities and expanding Westward. The Arizona office will now operate under the Fingerpaint name.

Doug Michelman left Finsbury’s San Francisco office after only two months to join Sprint as its CCO. Prior to rejoining Finsbury in September in a parter role, Michelman held the same position at Visa. We have no reports on why he jumped ship so quickly, but we will take a wild guess and say “money.” (via The Holmes Report)

New York’s J Public Relations is also expanding to the West Coast with the opening of its first Los Angeles office. JPR Founding Partner Jamie Lynn Sigler calls the move “a logical next step for our established, yet dynamic, agency,” noting that director Nicole Myden will run the new office. The release also frames the new office as “a full extension of the agency’s New York and San Diego” operations and lists several area lifestyle/hospitality clients.

Buffalo Communications of Vienna, Virginia has rebranded as Buffalo Brand Invigoration Group. The firm, which began 15 years ago as a golf-specialty shop, will now aim to serve clients within the larger sport/lifestyle/resort travel industries. The firm also notes that its offerings will go beyond standard PR to encompass strategy, design and social media. The firm also recently made several new hires, most prominently bringing veteran sports marketer and former PGA CEO Joe Steranka on to serve as chief global strategist. In case you missed it, here’s a social media case study from Buffalo that we published in July.

PR Week reports that Alan Hall has rejoined the Ford Motor Company as its global comms manager for tech, research and innovation. We would tell you more but, you know, PAYWALL.