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MPAA Announces New SEVP Global Policy

Senator Chris Dodd, Chairman/CEO of the Motion Picture Association of America, today set the new leadership team under his watch, including a promotion for Michael O’Leary to SEVP of Global Policy and External Affairs. Dodd also brought in his former Deputy Chief Of Staff from his U.S. Senate days Lori McGrogan to become Senior Adviser To The Chairman. He also revamped the internal PR staff, hiring Laura Nichols, now MPAA’s EVP Global Communications.

O’Leary, in his new role, will supervise all international, federal and state affairs operations. In addition, O’Leary will oversee the Association’s technology and research efforts. Previously, he had been EVP of Government Affairs, responsible for the development and the implementation of the MPAA’s domestic government policy priorities and federal and state legislative and regulatory strategies. According to his official bio, O’Leary has nearly 20 years of intellectual property policy and enforcement experience. Before coming to work for the MPAA, O’Leary served as Deputy Chief for Intellectual Property in the Computer Crime and Intellectual Property Section of the Department of Justice, where he prosecuted and supervised major domestic and international criminal intellectual property investigations and prosecutions.

Dodd said in a statement: “The creative community’s voice in Washington will be critical in the months and years ahead as our leaders debate what will be the best, most cost-effective ways to produce new jobs and protect the ones we have. We’ve assembled a senior team, who, together … Read More »

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MPAA Shake-UP: Revamps Internal PR Staff

By | Thursday September 15, 2011 @ 10:17am PDT

I’m pleased to see that the Motion Picture Association of America finally recognized it’s got a big PR problem. Rarely have I encountered flacks as inept and arrogant as Elizabeth Kaltman (who left the MPAA in late July for Walt Disney Studios, where I will make sure never to work with her) and her boss Howard Gantman, the MPAA’s VP Corporate Communications. Now Gantman will have a boss: He will be reporting to fresh hire Laura Nichols, now EVP Global Communications, as part of a new organizational structure. She has extensive experience in both the private and public sectors. Nichols will oversee all international and domestic communications, media relations, new media development and special events. Nichols previously served as Senior Fellow and Senior Vice President for Communications and Strategies at the Center for American Progress, a leading Washington, DC think tank. As one of the original architects of CAP, she contributed to building the institution and leading its strategic planning since its founding in 2003. Before joining CAP, Nichols was SVP Corporate Communications at Public Broadcasting Service (PBS). She previously was an adviser, strategist and spokesperson for House Democratic Leader Richard Gephardt, and served as Press Secretary to the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and former US House Rep. Vic Fazio (D-CA). I wish her well.

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