About the group

The CIPR PA Group is the CIPR sector group for public affairs and communications professionals with an interest in politics, public affairs and government and parliamentary relations. Members work in-house and in agency and across a wide range of industry sectors.

As a group we will work closely with CIPR HQ to ensure the voice of public affairs professionals is well represented. We will also develop and facilitate thinking on how public affairs should evolve and be well-positioned for the future, including consideration of how chartered status can grow among public affairs professionals.

About the Community

Our Committee


Rachael Clamp


Rachael is a communications professional specialising in government engagement having worked for industry leading companies across a number of sectors from engineering and defence to publishing and professional services. She has led several international change communication campaigns supporting organising through times of M&A and disposal activity, significant restructuring and crises as well as working on business-as-usual and strategic campaigns.

Rachael is a passionate campaigner for the professionalisation and recognition of communications practioners and has served 4 years on the CIPR Council 5 years as a member of the CIPR's award-winning member magazine, Influence, editorial board.
Twitter: @Rachael_Clamp


Donna Castle

Vice Chairperson

Donna Castle is a Chartered PR Practitioner and Vice Chair of the CIPR Public Affairs Group Committee. She has been a member of CIPR for more than 20 years and an active volunteer since 2014. Throughout her career, Donna has specialised in healthcare policy and communications and is currently Senior Director of Public Affairs and Communications at PAGB, the consumer healthcare association. Donna has previously worked at the British Lung Foundation, Diabetes UK, the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy and in two full-service communications agencies. You can follow Donna on Twitter or on LinkedIn.

Twitter: @donnacastle



Samantha Wilding


Having spent a decade working in sustainability strategy and communications, Sam has returned to the public affairs arena, leading on health policy and public affairs at not for profit benefits provider B&CE. Earlier in her career, Sam held public affairs roles at Nationwide, the BMA and the British Dental Association, and was seconded to the Liberal Democrats’ Policy Unit for the 1997 general election campaign. With an MSc in British Politics from the London School of Economics, Sam is currently working towards a Postgraduate Certificate in Corporate Communications through the PR Academy/CIPR.

LinkedIn Samantha Wilding

Twitter: @alwayschicUK



Max Sugarman

Max manages RIA’s lobbying and media engagement activities, working to increase the profile of the rail supply industry to politicians, journalists and stakeholders. He has past experience working on infrastructure and transport issues, at the Institution of Civil Engineers and at a corporate communications agency. He has also worked at City Hall and at the US House of Representatives. Max is a member of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR), sits on their Public Affairs Committee and has a diploma in Professional PR. In the time he is not thinking about politics, he can be found wandering around North London looking for the best places to eat.



Peter Campbell

Peter is the External Affairs Manager at the Airspace Change Organising Group (ACOG) and has almost 15 years’ experience working in public affairs. He started his career at the London Chamber and British Chambers of Commerce, and the Association for Consultancy and Engineering where he developed a specialism in transport and infrastructure issues. Peter then headed up Westbourne Communications’ transport and infrastructure practice before moving to the Local Government Association as its Public Affairs Manager. He joined ACOG in December 2019 and leads on its engagement with political, business and local stakeholder groups. He is also an avid supporter of Welsh rugby.



Ahzaz Chowdhury

Az Chowdhury is the founder and Senior Partner of Nudge Factory. He leads Nudge Factory’s professional team and maintains oversight on the delivery of all services across the company’s client portfolio. Az and his team deliver client services across all specialisms the company provides expertise in, including; public affairs, corporate communications, local government, corporate social responsibility, and private client work. At Nudge Factory, Az leads a team of public affairs experts advising clients of all sizes, ranging from global companies, international finance houses and some of the biggest developers in the world. More recently he set up a charity, Nudge Foundation, for which he serves on the Board of Trustees.



John Kavanagh

John has been a member of the committee of the CIPR Public Affairs Group since November 2018 and works as Head of Policy and Public Affairs at Global Infrastructure Investor Association, the membership body for the worlds leading institutional investors in infrastructure. He has previously worked in a variety of public affairs and government engagement roles including at the British Business Bank, the UK government’s economic development bank for small business; ACCA, the global body for finance and accountancy professionals and High Speed Two Limited. He was also previously a local councillor for four years and remains active in the community.



Alan O’Kelly



Robert Okunnu

Robert is currently Director of Policy and External Affairs at the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health. He has 17 years’ experience in high-impact strategic communications, PR, policy, public affairs and campaigning. Robert's experience spans leadership roles in private and public sector organisations such as Water UK, Tesco PLC, the pharmaceutical company MSD, and the British Medical Association. He is a Chartered PR Practitioner accredited by the Chartered Institute of Public Relations, showing excellence and commitment to continuing professional development. Robert joined the Public Affairs Group in March 2016. Twitter: @ROkunnu




  Annual General Meeting TBC 14 October  Details to follow

Events that have taken place:

Join us for the Public Affairs Group’s first online pub quiz from 6pm on Wednesday 10 June. Industry legend Simon McVicker will be your host and question master, so sign up below for your chance to win an awesome prize and bragging rights across the industry.

Future Politics with Jamie Susskind Online 15 July  Details
  The Impact and Future of Lobbying Regulation in Scotland
Online 22 July  Details
  Winning in Brussels with Milos Labovic,  TBC 29 July Details due soon 


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