Edelman’s Asia Pacific president and CEO, Stephen Kehoe, is leaving the company. He has held the role since July 2019. Prior to this role, he was global head of sectors and practices at Edelman, which provided leadership over public affairs, corporate communications, executive positioning, consumer brand and a range of industry specialisms, such as health, technology, food and financial services.
Edelman confirmed the news to MARKETING-INTERACTIVE and said in a statement that this was a personal decision driven by changing family circumstances.
“We are very grateful to Kehoe for his many contributions to Edelman and wish him and his family the best as they move to a new chapter in their life. We are fortunate that Dave Samson will serve as our interim CEO of Edelman APAC to support a seamless transition,” the statement said.
Samson is currently vice chairman of corporate affairs for Edelman. He joined Edelman from Chevron Corporation where he was the long-time head of public affairs and led Chevron’s global communications strategies and activities, including corporate marketing and branding. Previously, Samson was head of worldwide communications for Levi Strauss & Co. He has also led international communications at both IBM and Oracle and was a partner and managing director at Ketchum Public Relations.
Kehoe added, “It’s been a fulfilling last four years at Edelman, and I am grateful for the opportunities I have been given to manage a fantastic group of professionals across Asia Pacific. It’s always difficult to leave any organization where the relationships have been deep, and Edelman is probably the hardest. However, after 30 years in the business, I’m looking forward to the opportunity to take a long break, and to focus on family,” he said.
Kehoe first joined Edelman in January 2018 as global chair of reputation, which included steering the firm’s work on the annual Edelman Trust Barometer.
Kehoe’s experience spans 25 years of international communications and reputation management. He joined Edelman from Visa, San Francisco, where he was senior vice president of global financial inclusion, a business-led, shared value initiative focused on driving Visa’s growth in emerging markets and delivering social impact.
Prior to this, Kehoe was head of corporate communications for Visa’s markets in Asia Pacific, Europe, Middle East and Africa, based in Singapore.
Before joining Visa, Kehoe was at PepsiCo in both New York and Brussels, where he served as Vice President Government Affairs & Public Policy. Among other responsibilities, he led global communications and public affairs programs focused on responding to marketing, advertising and food labelling challenges around the world. In addition, he led PepsiCo’s government affairs and corporate communication teams in the European Union, Russia and China.
Prior to his 15-year corporate positions with Visa and PepsiCo, Kehoe spent 10 years in other agencies, in North America and Europe.
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