About the group

About the Community

Our Committee


Shaun Bell MCIPR

Vice Chair

This is Shaun's second term representing the CIPR Scotland as Vice Chair, following two years as Secretary and serving as founding chair of the CIPR Scotland Future Leaders Forum. With more than a decade of PR experience, his clients at Stripe Communications include ScottishPower, A.G. Barr and the Scottish Government. He leads communications strategy, brand and delivery alongside Stripe's evaluation and training programmes. He was awarded 'Outstanding Young Communicator' at the 2016 CIPR UK Excellence Awards and 2014 CIPR Scotland PRide Awards.

Email: shaun.bell@stripecommunications.com
Twitter: @shaundbell


Gareth Brown

Secretary Associate, Message Matters

Originally from Northern Ireland, Gareth joined Message Matters in July 2016 from the Cabinet Office in the UK Government, where he worked in co-coordinating cross-government communications in Scotland. He works for a wide range of clients in the areas of corporate communications and political relations, and regularly contributes to Scottish national print and broadcast media as a political commentator. He was awarded Outstanding Young Communicator of the Year at the CIPR PRide Awards in 2018.

Twitter: @garfbrown


Caitlin O’Callaghan

Caitlin joined BIG Partnership in 2016 after obtaining a degree in journalism. Caitlin is a skilled and strategic communicator, currently working with a number of national clients in both the consumer and corporate sectors, including Macdonald Hotels & Resorts, Loch Lomond Group and Johnston Carmichael. Her other skills include media training, social media management and crisis communications. In 2019, Caitlin and her team were recognised with a silver award at the CIPR Pride awards for their media relations campaign for Kiltwalk, one of Scotland’s largest mass-participation events.

Email: caitlin.ocallaghan@bigpartnership.co.uk


Lisa Potter

Head of Communications, Law Society Scotland

After working in public sector communications for over 15 years, Lisa was appointed as Head of Communications for the Law Society of Scotland (the professional membership body for Scottish solicitors) in 2019. Originally trained as a journalist with DC Thomson & Co. Ltd., Lisa entered PR as a media relations specialist, before moving into internal communications and stakeholder engagement for housing and social work services, and latterly into leadership roles managing teams of PR generalists.

Email: lisapotter@lawscot.org.uk


Ian Arnot

Head of External Relations, UK Nations, BT

As head of BT Group’s regional external comms team, based in Edinburgh, Ian manages proactive and reactive comms across the UK. A CIPR-accredited MSc post-grad student in Strategic Communications at Edinburgh’s Queen Margaret University, Ian has been on the CIPR committee since 2017. Ian is also currently chair of Scotland’s HIV and Hep C charity, Waverley Care.

Twitter: @IanArnot


Sarah Robertson

Sarah is a skilled communicator, media liaison and strategic campaign planner with over four years’ agency experience. Having joined BIG Partnership in 2018, she specialises in both consumer and corporate communications. Her current clients include a number of well-know brands, such as Aldi, Johnstons of Elgin, and Deloitte. Sarah is chair of the CIPR Scotland Future Leaders Forum and was named 'Outstanding Young Communicator' at the 2017 CIPR Scotland Pride Awards.

Email: sarah.robertson@bigpartnership.co.uk


Lisa Fox Bennett

Lisa is an account manager at 3x1 Group. She has five years’ experience in the industry, having previously worked as a store manager for M&S, and has worked both in house and agency, with a range of clients in the public and private sector. Lisa is a keen storyteller, with an eye for a good story and a love of experiential activity, and is passionate about inspiring the next generation of PR professionals.

Twitter: @LisaFoxWrites


Jenifer Stirton

Director, Stockbridge

Jenifer is a Fellow of the CIPR and a Chartered Practitioner. She has her own strategic communications and public affairs consultancy and has advised a number of high profile clients including HS2 and UK Government. Prior to setting up her own business Jenifer held a number of high profile Director roles in the public sector including NHS Lothian and the Student Loans Company. Jenifer is a previous CIPR Scotland Chair, served on the Board of CIPR UK and is currently the CIPR Scotland elected representative on the CIPR UK Council. She is also a Trustee of iProvision the CIPR benevolent fund which provides assistance in cash or in kind to CIPR members or former members who, for whatever reason, are facing difficult times.
Jenifer is passionate about learning, getting more members to take up CPD and supporting and encouraging new entrants to the PR industry

Twitter: @jeniferstirton


Hannah Baird

Trainee Account Executive - Morrison Media

Hannah Baird works at Morrison Media. She writes various content from business press releases to advertorial that have appeared in mainstream and specialist media. Hannah researches, prepares and organises all of the media training and enjoys thinking of creative ideas for PR stunts. She was an editorial assistant and contributor for a consumer magazine and she has completed a digital marketing diploma this year.

Twitter: @jeniferstirton


David Ridd

Communications, Marketing and Business Development Manager, Edinburgh Bioquarter

David leads communications, marketing and business development for Edinburgh BioQuarter - a joint capital and innovation programme with NHS Lothian, the University of Edinburgh, Scottish Enterprise and City of Edinburgh Council. Prior to his appointment in 2017, David managed external communications for Scotland’s second largest healthboard, NHS Lothian. Having trained as a broadcast journalist, and prior to moving into PR with Aberdeen Football Club, he worked as News Reporter at Radio Forth and Sport Editor for Northsound Radio. David is also a member of the Marketing Communications Committee for Life Sciences Scotland.

Twitter: @davidjridd


Lesley Brydon

Chair - Managing Director, Clark Communications

Lesley started Clark Communications in 2012 following almost 20 years in the industry. She has worked at every level within agency, from junior account executive to MD and agency owner, with a professional focus on B2B, corporate and public sector. Her business has been named the CIPR PRide Outstanding Small Consultancy for the last two years. As a business owner, she is passionate about learning and development, people and opportunities for growth – both personal and business. She is a Fellow of the CIPR and the Institute of Directors, a CIPR Diploma graduate and an Accredited Practitioner. This is Lesley’s second stint on the CIPR Scotland Committee, returning after a break of a mere 20 years, with a whole lot more experience suited to the role of Chair.


Rhona Deb

Marketing Manager - Technical Services, V.Ships

Based in Glasgow, Rhona has 14 years experience in marcomms and PR across various industries including maritime, financial services, FMCG and recruitment. She completed her CIPR Diploma in 2011 at the University of Sunderland adding to her BA (Hons) Communication gained from Edinburgh Napier University in 2004. As a trusted expert on communications to senior leaders, she specialises in strategy design, campaign planning, events and brand management. Rhona is the events lead for CIPR Scotland.

Twitter: @rhona_deb


Neil Cuthbert

Director, Stockbridge

Neil Cuthbert MCIPR set up Public Affairs Co-operative Ltd in 2013 to focus on helping clients influence public policy and better communicate their message through the media. He has over 20 years of public policy experience working in the government, private and third sectors. In 2011, he was appointed as Associate Director with a leading independent Scottish public affairs agency, where his work focused on commercial property development, renewable energy and leisure and tourism. Neilis is committed to full transparency of his public affairs activities through the UK Lobbying Register (UKLR) and has advised CIPR on issues related to the regulation of lobbying in Scotland.


Chris Fairbairn

Starting at Holyrood PR in 2014, Chris has worked from entry level through to Account Director, gaining experience across corporate and B2B clients, expanding into B2C in recent years. Throughout that time he has worked across a huge range of sectors.
More latterly, Chris has gained insight into business operations and development, through SMT experience within the agency.
Originally from Northumberland, he was awarded ‘Outstanding Young Communicator’ at the 2019 CIPR Scotland Pride Awards.


Fraser Clarke

Fraser works as an Account Manager at Stripe Communications after initially starting out as a journalist at a national news agency. During his time there he covered a broad range of stories for major national titles as well covering a variety of sports events at the weekends. This helped hone his communications skills before moving into public relations where he has worked on a range of campaigns including campaigns for IRN-BRU, the Scottish Government, Scottish Power and RBS.

Twitter: @_fraserclarke


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