ATLANTA--()--McRae, an Atlanta-based integrated marketing agency, announced today the hiring of Bert Brantley to lead its Public Affairs and Issue Management Practice Group. Brantley previously served as Director of Communications for Governor Sonny Perdue, where he served as the lead spokesman on behalf of the Governor’s office throughout his entire second term.
“His experience in dealing with major issues – both good and bad – along with his experience in working with the Georgia General Assembly and with media throughout Georgia and around the globe, will be of tremendous benefit to our agency and to our clients.”
Over the past twelve years, Brantley has played a prominent role in managing communications for the most important and high-profile issues in Georgia. He was recruited by the Georgia Department of Transportation in 1999, and during his tenure there, directed media relations activities on major construction projects. Brantley moved to the Georgia Department of Economic Development as Communications Manager in 2005, leading public relations efforts on the Global Georgia international marketing initiative as well as the location of the Kia Motors plant in West Point, Georgia.
After joining the Governor’s Office in December 2006, Brantley led the development of communications strategies and served as the primary media contact on behalf of the Governor. In that role, he managed communications across a wide variety of issues ranging from positive developments such as the Jasper Port development agreement in the Savannah area and announcing major corporate relocations such as NCR, to extreme crises including the droughts of 2007 and 2008 and the 2008 gas shortage caused by Hurricane Ike. He also played a key role in shepherding communications through numerous, volatile circumstances related to the State’s ongoing budget challenges.
“It was a privilege and an honor to serve the state of Georgia alongside Governor Perdue for the past four years,” Brantley said. “Helping the Governor lead our state through a host of major developments has given me a unique perspective on the issues facing our city and state. I knew that the next, right step for me was to take those experiences and the relationships I have developed along the way and put them to work with a good organization helping good clients succeed.”
McRae president, Joe Snowden, clearly agreed with Brantley’s perspective. “Bert Brantley is possibly the best-known communicator in Georgia given his statewide responsibilities over the past four years,” Snowden said. “His experience in dealing with major issues – both good and bad – along with his experience in working with the Georgia General Assembly and with media throughout Georgia and around the globe, will be of tremendous benefit to our agency and to our clients.”
For his part, Brantley weighed a number of options and job offers before deciding to join McRae.
“I was fortunate enough to have a number of paths to choose from,” Brantley explained. “In the end, McRae’s exceedingly high professional standards, combined with a very positive, upbeat work environment and a unique communications model that I really believe in, made my final choice an easy one.”
Brantley’s focus at McRae will be on serving clients who have ongoing issue-management needs, as well as those seeking to optimize communications response during times of particular opportunity or crisis. In terms of the best way to go about maximizing the effectiveness of these types of programs, Brantley believes McRae’s integrated approach and unique service offerings and business model are, “Undoubtedly the best possible suite of solutions.”
As an integrated marketing firm, McRae provides comprehensive media relations, event management, website development, paid search, social media, direct marketing and full service advertising on an in-house basis. According to Brantley, who during his career has accessed the services of a number of agencies, McRae is the only firm he has found that provides national-caliber services across the entire spectrum of communications. He believes this strategic advantage will allow him to help his clients succeed in a vast majority of circumstances.
“What McRae is doing allows us to reach the media, key stakeholders and the general public in every way possible reinforcing the takeaway message,” Brantley explains. “Each client’s program can be customized to take advantage of the most effective, and cost-effective, mediums. I truly believe what we’re doing here represents the future of public affairs and issue-oriented communications.”
Snowden concurs. “With Bert at the helm, our clients will be getting the best possible strategic thinking and will have every possible tool at their immediate disposal,” he added. “We’re very fortunate to have Bert joining us, and our clients are going to be the big winners.”
Brantley is a native of Valdosta, Georgia, and graduated from the University of Georgia with a bachelor’s degree in journalism in 1997 and a master’s degree in public administration in 2005. He and his wife, Tonya, have two daughters and live in McDonough. Brantley is a board member of the Georgia Public Telecommunications Commission, the governing board of Georgia Public Broadcasting. They are active members of Salem Baptist Church in McDonough.
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