Women in Public Affairs: Making a Difference

As part of International Women's Day, we asked women in public affairs around the globe why #PublicAffairsMatters on #IWD2016?

Questions ranged from proudest professional achievements to political heroes. Interestingly, a high percentage of the women we surveyed listed Aung San Suu Kyi as their political hero, thanks to her tenacity and determination in the face of adversity. It also seems that funerals and elections played a key part in political memories, with the feeling of wanting to make a difference and change the world the main reason for our public affairs experts choosing their career paths.

So just what did our team have to say and how does it vary depending on when they were born? We’ve rounded up a selection of our favourite answers…

a41dbd823e6ffd08aa4b9f950848e887_f814_262x147_acf_cropped“My earliest political memory was in 1997 when Tony Blair got elected and entered Downing Street as Prime Minister. I got into public affairs because I’m passionate about current affairs and the satisfaction that comes with helping clients make their case to politicians and influence the direction of policy.”

Anna Jobling, Senior Consultant, Interel UK (4 years in public affairs)


“I think the most important political issue today is the combination of the humanitarian refugee crisis and the rise of the far-right. My political hero is Simone Veil because she is a feminist and pro-European at the same time!” 

Vinciane Patelou, Director, Interel EU (8 years in public affairs)

9331b89efed0aece972ebcb723685c43_f828-2“I’m currently working on a variety of campaigns, including the spread of addictive gambling machines, legislation to extend trading hours on a Sunday, the national living wage and the buy-to-let housing market. I think the most important political issue today is Brexit and the Syrian crisis, along with the rise of ISIS.”

Katherine Morgan, Director, Interel UK (8 years in public affairs)


*Special Guest Contributor*

“In ten years’ times I hope to still be in public affairs, but mentoring young professionals and helping to structure public affairs departments in organisations. I’m currently working on research funding, innovation, privacy, copyright and anti-money laundering projects.”

Carolina Lessa, Director, Government Affairs, RELX (10 years in public affairs)

c351ed26aa978c7a26bcdd97c0fa1978_f521_262x147_acf_cropped1-2“I started to become interested in politics when watching a weekly political show at home, and in particular I remember watching Jacques Chirac debating with Francois Mitterrand. It’s one of the reasons I studied International Affairs and Politics, and went into public affairs.” 

Chloé Dungelhoeff, Associate Director, Interel Belgium (13 years in communications)

a2162f8a6d45d49485d25f6994bd1bfa_f739-3“My earliest memory was when my mother took me to General de Gaulle’s funeral when I was 7. I’m currently working to try and open the door to clear shale gas exploration, thanks to new technology that uses no water and no chemicals.”

Florence Maisel, Managing Partner, Interel France (30 years in public affairs)

Fruzsina_262x147_acf_cropped“My earliest political memory was meeting Senator John F. Kennedy when I was 15. My proudest professional moment was being honoured by Tyco International’s Board of Directors for ‘protecting shareholder value by defending against adverse state and federal legislation’.”

Fruzsina Harsanyi, Senior Advisor, Interel (44 years in public affairs)

International Women's Day Final 8MARCH16

Got some political memories you’d like to share? Simply tweet us @Interel_Global using #IWD2016

Want to find out more about our amazing team of consultants? Meet them here!


Lauren Roden

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