Connie Partoyan Announced as President of Direct Impact

NEW YORK, November 19, 2014 – Burson-Marsteller, a leading global public relations and communications firm, has appointed Nicole Cornish Chief Operating Officer (COO) for its U.S. region, effective immediately. Prior to this appointment, Cornish was Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Direct Impact, Burson-Marsteller’s grassroots operation, as well as an Executive Vice President, U.S. region, for Burson-Marsteller.

“Nicole and I have worked closely together in the past, and I greatly value her sound judgment and leadership,” said Michael Law, U.S. CEO, Burson-Marsteller. “Attracting and growing the best talent and delivering the highest caliber client service is job one, and I have great confidence in Nicole’s ability to lead these functions.”

As COO, Cornish will focus on resource management and operations for the U.S. region. She will place particular emphasis on talent retention and recruitment to ensure continued excellence in client service.

As part of this transition, Connie Partoyan will become President of Direct Impact. She will oversee day-to-day operations, manage the new business development process, lead key client accounts and serve as primary liaison for Direct Impact’s national grassroots field network. Previously, Partoyan served for five years as Executive Vice President for Direct Impact, providing senior client leadership for some of the firm’s largest clients in addition to playing an instrumental role in new business strategy and development.

Direct Impact is in the process of evaluating candidates for CEO. Until a successor is announced, Cornish will remain closely involved with firm leadership and engaged in key client relationships to ensure a smooth transition.

About Burson-Marsteller
Burson-Marsteller, established in 1953, is a leading global public relations and communications firm. It provides clients with strategic thinking and program execution across a full range of public relations, public affairs, reputation and crisis management, advertising and digital strategies. The firm’s seamless worldwide network consists of 73 offices and 85 affiliate offices, together operating in 110 countries across six continents. Burson-Marsteller is a part of Young & Rubicam Group, a subsidiary of WPP (NASDAQ: WPPGY), the world’s leading communications services network. For more information visit

About Direct Impact
Founded in 1988, Direct Impact ( is a wholly owned subsidiary of Burson-Marsteller and a member of the WPP family. Direct Impact is a premier grassroots public affairs, public education and corporate reputation firm, offering a complete range of services essential to conducting successful grassroots outreach and education, public relations and localized community mobilization. Direct Impact specializes in using a campaign-style approach integrating on- and off-line strategies to influence and persuade targeted audiences, including engagement and activation of key opinion leaders, social media channels, local media and influential community organizations.

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