New Staff Adds Momentum to Firm’s Expansion of its Advocacy and CSR Offerings to Clients
New York — Five top communications experts, including the former press secretary for NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio, are joining Fenton, the Social Change Agency, to expand the firm’s offerings in progressive public relations from coast to coast.
Known for its success in creating the first full-service social change agency capable of developing and executing effective media advocacy campaign strategies for its clients, Fenton has hired Karen Hinton, to be the Managing Director of its New York City office and the firm’s Chief Strategy Officer. For over 30 years, Karen Hinton has advocated through public campaigns for issues important to low-income communities, such as affordable housing, community banking, education and environmental cleanup. Before joining Fenton, Karen was President of Hinton Communications, a public relations firm with offices in Washington, D.C. and New York, where she led an effort to draw attention to Chevron’s extensive contamination of the Ecuadorian rainforest, resulting from its oil drilling there for over three decades. As a result of her efforts, 60 Minutes, The Washington Post, Wall Street Journal and NY Times featured major stories about the environmental disaster.
“No other public relations firm in the country offers the range of progressive issues to promote than Fenton. I am thankful for an opportunity where every day I can support organizations and companies doing good work across the globe,” said Hinton.
“We’re proud to welcome these progressive leaders into the Fenton family to accelerate the good we can do with our clients,” said Michael Huttner, Fenton’s CEO.
Valarie De La Garza, whose marketing and communications career spans nearly 25 years, will join Fenton as the Managing Director of its Los Angeles office. A highly skilled strategist, writer, engaging presenter and team builder with expertise in marketing, media relations, community outreach and public affairs, Valarie has worked for boutique, mid-sized and global PR agencies, including The Rogers Group (now Finn Partners), MS&LGROUP and her own successful consultancy, De La Garza PR. She led communications and marketing efforts for Big Brothers Big Sisters of America Latino and the California Community Foundation, one of the largest and most prestigious community foundations in the country.
Lucille Renwick, who joins Fenton as a Vice President, is a communications strategist with more than two decades of experience helping individuals and organizations tell their stories and advance their goals and missions. She led communications and marketing efforts for the City University of New York’s School of Law where she helped advance the school’s mission of public interest and public service law. She has spent more than a decade as a journalist and editor writing about and advocating for education.
Devi Ramachandran Thomas, who joins the Fenton staff as a Senior Vice President focused on the firm’s Corporate Social Responsibility practice, has more than fifteen years of experience leading strategic marketing, social responsibility and shared value philanthropic campaigns. She comes to Fenton from the UN Foundation, where she was the Senior Director of Brand Citizenship working on cause-related marketing partnerships and also Director of Shot@Life, a global cause brand that aims to increase access to immunizations for children in developing countries through UN partners.
Eric Hollister Williams, who has dedicated his 15 year career to advancing policies that address social inequality and injustice, is joining Fenton as a Vice President. He has a background in political advocacy, strategic communications, global health and development, and stakeholder engagement. Eric currently serves as a Special Projects Director for Ohio Together, the Ohio coordinated campaign for Hillary for America; was as a Senior Director at williamsworks, a social impact and philanthropic advisory firm based in Seattle; and served as the Democratic Staff Director for the House Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights and international organizations. He began his career at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
Michael Huttner, Fenton’s CEO, is available to discuss more details about the firm’s new hires and new advocacy projects.