Ex-Sunderland Echo editor Rob Lawson has joined successful PR and marketing company Callaghan Marketing.

Lesley Callaghan, a former director of Sunderland AFC, created Callaghan Marketing in the summer of 2011. Her clients include high profile individuals as well as a range of regional businesses such as Sunderland-based telecom company CCS Mobile, leading regional architects Red Box Design Group, Royal Television Society, Northeast Press Ltd, Ramside Estates, the Customs House and the Harland Corporation run by successful internet entrepreneur Darren Williams.

With a background in sports marketing Lesley also works with a number of sporting institutions and is on the board of an investment banking consultancy firm based in San Francisco, advising on European sports. She has also recently been involved in the new national football centre, St George’s Park, working with Project Director Sir Bob Murray. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge officially opened the centre this week.

Lesley has announced she has been joined by former Sunderland Echo editor Rob Lawson, who left the paper last month. Rob has joined the company in the role of Associate Director.

Lesley said: “Rob and I have worked closely together for over a decade albeit on opposite sides of the table for much of that time. While sometimes we had to agree to dis-agree there was always a degree of mutual respect and understanding, which is key. Between us we have over 40-years’ experience in marketing, PR and media and have overcome some interesting challenges. We feel we have all the bases covered and are excited about the future.”

Rob edited the Sunderland Echo for ten years and the Echo’s sister paper the Shields Gazette for six years. He was also editorial director for Northeast Press.

Rob said he was delighted to be joining Callaghan Marketing: “I’m really looking forward to starting in my new role. I think with our shared knowledge and breadth of experience in complementing industries we have a lot to offer existing and potential clients.”

The company which is based at Evolve at Rainton Bridge has also been involved with a number of high profile events in the region.