One of the city’s oldest and best-known advertising and public relations firms is changing hands. Brian Gard, who founded Gard Communications in 1979, is selling the firm to its managing director, Liz Fuller.
Gard, 70, built a stable of institutional clients such as the Oregon Department of Transportation, Oregon Health & Science University, and the Standard Insurance Company—but he’s also been the city’s go-to crisis communications adviser for executives. He’s helped former Gov. Neil Goldschmidt, investor Peter Stott and Frank Foti, CEO of ship-repair company Vigor Industrial, among many others, and led the business coalition that fought for years to build the Columbia River Crossing project.
Gard says Fuller, 32, will buy the firm from him in the next several years for an undisclosed amount, during which time he’ll continue to work with clients and help with the transition. “Liz and I have shared leadership of the firm for a couple of years,” Gard says. “I hope to continue helping her for a long period of time.”