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Burson-Marsteller Names Mike Fernandez U.S. CEO

Global strategic communications and PR firm, Burson-Marsteller announced that Mike Fernandez will succeed Michael Law, who is now Worldwide Executive Vice President, effective immediately. Both Fernandez and Law will report to Worldwide President Kevin Bell.

“Mike Fernandez is one of the most highly respected leaders in the entire strategic communications field, and we are thrilled to have him step up to run our firm’s all-important U.S. region,” said Don Baer, Worldwide Chair and CEO, Burson-Marsteller, in a statement. “Mike’s deep experience leading corporate affairs and communications for some of the world’s most important companies and his understanding and excitement about the vast changes in public relations make him ideal for this time of transformation at Burson-Marsteller and across our sector.”

Fernandez has been at Burson-Marsteller since September 2016 as Chair, Global Corporate and Financial Practice to spearhead client development, strategy and new offerings for the Practice.

Previously, Fernandez also served as the Chief Communications Officer for five large U.S.-based corporations across diverse industries, including financial, technology, consumer goods and services, and health care.

Most recently, he led global corporate affairs at Cargill, where for six years he was responsible for communications, brand and marketing services, government relations, and corporate social responsibility.

Earlier in his career, he served as Press Secretary to U.S. Senator Ernest “Fritz” Hollings, where at age 23 he was the youngest U.S. Senate Press Secretary ever and only the second Latino to serve in such a role.

“Burson-Marsteller’s world-class talent and expertise combined with second-to-none capabilities that are driving business results and solving real-world problems make this an extraordinary opportunity,” said Fernandez, in a statement. “I look forward to working with both our U.S. and global clients to help them win in the marketplace and thrive.”

As for how he is taking his success on a personal level: “The tendency for some is to view this as a “look how far they have come” moment,” Fernandez told DIVERGE. “Instead it should be confirmation that success can come from any demographic with a dream, hard work and ability.”