NORRIS McDONOUGH LLP
Educated at Stowe and Merton College, Oxford, David cut his teeth in the world of communications by taking his first job as amanuensis and chief of staff to Basil (now Lord) Feldman in 1975. It threw him into the deep end of public company and political life and developed and shaped the skills on which he built his career as a communications adviser.
He first put up his plate as a corporate communications consultant in 1980 and built and ran McDonough Associates Ltd for ten years. During that decade he and his firm advised The City of New York, the first Industrial Board for Northern Ireland, a range of businesses and financial institutions and, from the early days of marketing deregulation of the professions, a substantial number of law firms and accountancy practices.
With Rupert Hambro as chairman and an active shareholder, McDonough Associates also bought an investor relations business – then an unusual pairing – and made its service to quoted companies part of David’s consultancy offering.
In 1990, his business joined forces with the relatively new and high profile Lowe Bell Communications where, for thirteen years, he worked with Tim (now Lord) Bell and a team of Senior Consultants, making Lowe Bell Consultants the market leader in strategic communications advice and providers of solutions to an unrivalled A List client list of businesses, business leaders, professional firms, foreign governments, Presidents, Prime Ministers, Heads of State and major charities.
In 2003, and with an urge to break out of City-driven public company life, David left Bell Pottinger to launch The McDonough Partnership with the specific objective of offering strategic communications and navigational advice to business leaders, including the creators of remarkable business, as well as enterprises and professional firms.
Over ten years, from offices in St James’s in the West End of London, The McDonough Partnership grew in scale, influence and success for its clients, often working with other specialist advisers and sometimes involving other communications consultancies with particular skills.
In 2013, David and his old friend and consulting colleague, Steve Norris, decided to join forces, based in Westminster, in order to be able to offer an enhanced set of highly personalised consultancy skills to a wider spread of private and corporate clients.
In parallel with his life as a communications consultant to business and a close trusted adviser to business leaders, David has been very active in the charity world for over thirty years, including in 1988 co-founding The October Club, of which he is now Life President. He served on The Chelsea Pensioners’ Appeal Committee for four years and has recently concluded his second and final term as a Commissioner of The Royal Hospital Chelsea. He is also Founder and Deputy Chairman of the Advisory Board for Samaritans; a founder member of The Prime Minister’s World War One Centenary Commemoration Advisory Group; a member of The Winston Churchill Memorial Trust Appeal Committee and an Ambassador of The Chapel Royal Appeal at The Tower of London and a founder member of The 1535 Society.
He was appointed an Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (OBE) by Her Majesty the Queen in 1998 for services to the community. David is also a Freeman of the City of London; a Fellow of Harris Manchester College, Oxford; a Liveryman of The Merchant Taylors Company; a Fellow of The Royal Society of Arts; and an Officer of The Order of St John.
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