Hill&Knowlton Strategies of Ottawa has hired Jane Billings as vice-president and procurement group leader. She is a former senior assistant deputy minister at the Public Health Agency of Canada. She has also worked for the Privy Council Office, Public Safety Canada and Public Works and Government Services Canada, and has represented Canada at the World Health Organization. The agency has promoted Jack Hughes to leader of the public affairs unit. Prior to joining the firm this spring, he was a lawyer at Borden Ladner Gervais, where he was the national leader of its defence and security industry group. Kelly Cooper has been hired as an account director in the public affairs department. She has previously held various positions in the federal departments of natural resources, environment and Aboriginal affairs.
In related news, the agency's Toronto office has promoted four staff in its health and pharma practice. Vicki Franklin and Martha Linton have been promoted to the position of account director. Sommer Ellis has been promoted to senior consultant. Michelle MacLeod has been promoted to consultant.