Frank O’Donnell, a former editor of The Scotsman, will join the Edinburgh-based strategic communications consultancy, Charlotte Street Partners, early in the new year.
O’Donnell has been a leading figure in the Scottish media for more than 25 years, editing five of the country’s most respected news brands; The Scotsman, Edinburgh Evening News, Scotland on Sunday, The Press and Journal (P&J) and the Evening Express.
He has been the recipient of more than 50 individual and team awards under his leadership, most recently as editor-in-chief for the P&J when it was named newspaper of the year at the Scottish Press Awards in 2022.
Having started his career as a print journalist in 1995, in recent years O’Donnell has shaped several successful newsroom transformations. He led the launch of inews.co.uk, the digital arm of the i newspaper and established the first website for the Edinburgh Evening News.
Born in Edinburgh, O’Donnell is a former member of the Scottish Newspaper Society Editors’ Committee and the IPSO Editors’ Code of Practice Committee. He will take up the role of senior partner with Charlotte Street Partners on 8 January 2024.
O’Donnell joins recent recruit Will Torness – another former journalist who was a news producer within the US broadcast network NBC – and Emma MacAndrews, who will join the firm in January having spent the past year working in the constituency office of Drew Hendry, member of parliament for Inverness, Nairn, Badenoch and Strathspey.
Malcolm Robertson, founding partner, Charlotte Street Partners, said: “Frank has had a brilliant career to date and, in recent years, has become one of the most articulate and influential voices in the UK media sector as it navigates the transition into digital publishing. We are delighted that Frank is bringing all that expertise and his unique perspectives to the team and to the work we do with our clients.”
O’Donnell said: “I have long admired Charlotte Street Partners as a business and am really pleased to be joining the team as they prepare to celebrate the firm’s tenth birthday next year. Over the past decade, the company has earned an excellent reputation for providing insightful advice and practical support married with impeccable client service. I’m really enthused by the vision for the next chapter under Malcolm’s leadership and the opportunity to be part of that.
“I hope my background as a storyteller, my knowledge of digital publishing, and my experience of leading teams will be an asset as the business – and the communications sector more broadly – continues to evolve.”
These appointments follow three recent promotions within the Charlotte Street Partners team. Fergus McGowan has been promoted to senior client manager while Phoebe O’Carroll-Moran and John Cumming are now senior associates.