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Sheila Mitchell, DoH

Sheila Mitchell is responsible for marketing at the Department of Health which has the largest marketing programme in the UK public sector. She has pioneered new ways of working on health campaigns in partnership with many of the UK’s leading retailers and food manufacturers and also with pharmaceutical companies. Under Sheila’s direction the Department of Health’s marketing has won over 40 industry awards (including IPA Gold) in the last twelve months.

Sheila Mitchell’s background spans high profile commercial advertising and marketing as well as senior level experience of strategy and delivery in the public sector.

With an MA in French and Italian from Glasgow University and a postgraduate qualification in European Marketing, Sheila’s career began in Scotland working for BP. Moving to London she was based at BT’s national HQ and played a key role in the multiple award winning Maureen Lipman phone call stimulation TV campaigns, which led to her becoming responsible for the leadership all of BT’s marketing communication to the UK consumer. As well as some of the UK’s best known advertising campaigns along with extensive PR and event activity, this included what was probably the largest programme of consumer database marketing in the country.

After a spell running her own consultancy (clients included BUPA and the giant Sonera Corporation of Finland) she won a contract to head the marketing thrust for the Government’s Office of the e-Envoy which led to the establishment of the successful online DirectGov operation. In her next role, working in the Cabinet Office with then Permanent Secretary for Government Communications, Howell James, she planned and launched the Government’s internal Engage Programme, which adapted best practice from commercial sector marketing to the needs of Government .

Since 2007 she has been contracted to the Department of Health where she is responsible for a wide range of public health information and behaviour change programmes that include Change4Life, smoking cessation, Stroke awareness, the bowel cancer campaign, alcohol and drug health harms, and all flu and immunisation communication.

Married, with two daughters, Sheila’s interests include travel and dance. She lives in Tunbridge Wells and, whenever she gets the chance, in Venice.

(Judge: 2011)

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