Computergram: Oracle Hires White House Spin-Meister

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From: Sally Khudairi (
Date: Tue Nov 28 2000 - 20:22:51 PST

I see a trend: ZOT Group hires NASA Press Secretary to Dan Goldin, Oracle
hires White House Press Secretary/Assistant to the President...


Section: 04. Barbed Wire

To lose one senior executive may be regarded as a misfortune; to lose two
looks like carelessness. Oracle Corp appeared to be guilty of the latter
earlier this month when it lost its executive vice president, Gary Bloom,
who was widely expected to fill the shoes of the also misplaced
second-in-command Ray Lane, who left in the summer.

So the company is making the most of its latest hiring. In a statement
issued yesterday the company said that Joe Lockhart will report directly to
Oracle CEO Larry Ellison and is expected to bring "perspective and
experience not commonly found in Silicon Valley companies."

That's because Lockhart's previous job was White House press secretary and
assistant to the president of the United States. "Joe will help us clearly
and broadly communicate the benefits of e-business and e-government,"
Ellison said in the statement.

Limbering up for the job with his first public statement on behalf of the
database, middleware and accountancy software company, Lockhart stretched
his credibility to breaking point when he said: "This is an incredible
opportunity for me to work with one of the most exciting companies in the
world and with one of the most visionary leaders of our time."

The PR expert has been heavily involved with the US Democratic Party
throughout his career and was part of the Dukakis/Bentsen, Clinton/Gore and
Mondale/Ferraro presidential campaigns. Oracle did not say whether he was
offered the job before or after the Florida vote was certified on Sunday.


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