Penn State hires Ketchum for communications crisis management of child sex abuse scandal

The Board of Trustees of Penn State University has hired a crisis communications specialist to help them deal with the brand reputation crisis brought on by the child sexual abuse scandal connected to the school's football coaches, and university administration.

The school has hired the massive Ketchum, owned by the Omnicom Group on November 6, a day after a former football coach was arrested and charged with 40 counts of sexual abuse of eight young boys over a 15-year period.

Ad Age reports that Ketchum assisted with a press conference two days later during which the vice chairman announced that the school's head football coach, and its university were stepping down.

From Ad Age:

It's likely that the connection between the PSU board and Ketchum was made through an existing or former agency client. Ketchum is better known as a consumer PR shop rather than a crisis-communications firm, but it has a team of around 50 crisis executives domestically. It's understood that a few team members are currently on the ground at PSU's campus.

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