TORONTO, ON – rock it promotions, today announced the appointment of Kate Makinson as President of the public relations lifestyle firm. The news comes following the decision by Founder Debra Sadowski to pivot her role from President to CEO as the agency approaches an impressive milestone of 20 years of business in January 2020. Effective immediately, Makinson will assume the day-to-day operations of the agency including all high-level planning and strategic direction for the business going forward.
rock-it is also pleased to announce Victoria Gormley in a full time Vice President role. Gormley served as Vice President of the agency over the past year during Makinson’s maternity leave. She hails from an executive post in publicity and promotional marketing at Warner Bros Pictures Canada and will work alongside Makinson in supporting the agency team and all facets of client needs.
The move will see Sadowski shift her focus to the long-term strategic growth of the business as well as devote time to client acquisitions and executive team mentorship.
Over the past quarter, rock it was shortlisted as PR Agency of the Year by Strategy Magazine; was ranked in the inaugural Report on Business list of Canada’s Top Growing Companies by The Globe and Mail; and made history by being the only PR agency to be included in the Canadian Business and Maclean’s Growth 500 list for the past four years in a row.
“The business has operated as a single structure leader since its inception. When we were in our infancy, and even our adolescence, I could play many roles. Now the company is at a size where it needs to be run with foresight from multiple leaders who understand my vision as it relates to client service and staff satisfaction, and also possess the business acumen to continue our thriving growth trajectory,” said Sadowski.
Sadowski adds: “Kate has taken care of rock-it as if she founded the business alongside me. She is a seasoned leader who has played a big role in the overall success of the agency for the past six years. I know, without any hesitation, that Kate is the right person for the job and I am thrilled to give her an opportunity she has so genuinely earned. Victoria joined us just over a year ago and became an invaluable and indispensable member of the executive leadership team. I am so pleased both of these outstanding women have accepted these positions so they can lead rock-it into its next chapter.”
Makinson, who previously served as Vice President of rock-it, joined the company in early 2014. She has been integral in developing solid relationships with clients and media, managing agency operations, and client acquisitions. She was recognized in 2017 as PR Team Leader of the Year and Top 40 Under 40, by PR in Canada.
“I know that I speak for everyone at rock-it, past and present, in thanking Debra for her perspective, leadership and tireless dedication to building one of the most recognized PR agencies in the country,” said Makinson. “I am incredibly excited to assume this new position as rock-it embarks on its 20th year! We have an exceptionally talented team that are focused on developing creative strategic solutions for the notable clients and brands we passionately represent and I’m looking forward to continued success and growth in my new role.”
Recognized as one of Canada’s leading lifestyle public relations firms, rock-it promotions is a full-service PR agency specializing in media relations, event planning, social media, launch events, press tours, sponsorship, partnerships and much more. The firm specializes in working with brands in a wide variety of industries including fashion, beauty, entertainment, food & beverage, hospitality, and travel & tourism. Current clients include adidas, GUESS, FIJI Water, The JUNO Awards, L’Oréal Paris, Casper, Club Med, Toronto Fashion Week, Dr. Martens, and Yorkville Village to name a few. Additionally, rock-it promotions operates Fourth Floor Management, a social influencer management arm that represents more than 20 of Canada’s most renowned and respected creative minds in the influencer community.