Personal PR winners and sinners: Michael Sheen's stirring NHS speech and the mounting pressure on Ipso's Paul Vickers

Rich Leigh takes a regular look at the reputation of people in the public eye – including CEOs, politicians and other famouses – neatly dividing them into winners and sinners. Rich is the founder of Rich Leigh & Company, and you can send him your tips for this column either by email or on Twitter @RichLeighPR.

Alright, marketing land. I’m back with my weekly (well… ish) look at how those in the public eye have fared in the last week, by highlighting one ‘winner’ and one ‘sinner’.

As always, if you would ever like to nominate ‘winners’ or ‘sinners’ to feature in the column based on the week that was for famouses, politicians, prominent business types and others in the public eye, feel free by tweeting me @RichLeighPR or emailing me here. You and your company will always be credited (unless you’d prefer not to be that is).

Anyway, enough of all that, eh? Let’s get to it…

Winner

Actor Michael Sheen, who has portrayed Tony Blair twice onscreen, widened his future career choices this week, delivering a speech in defence of the NHS dubbed ‘brilliant’ by Labour MP Diane Abbott.

Speaking at a rally in Tredegar, South Wales on St David’s Day, Sheen attacked the Conservative party's austerity cuts, passionately pleading for people to "stand up for what you believe, but first of all, by God, believe in something".

Parts of his speech can be viewed in the video below:

The Los Angeles resident gave his speech whilst filming his BBC Wales programme Valleys Rebellion looking at political disillusionment in Wales. As highlighted by the BBC, the speech was celebrated by celebrities including Sheen's girlfriend comedienne Sarah Silverman, writer Caitlin Moran, author Mark Haddon and best-selling fantasy author Neil Gaiman.

Thanks to the guys at Staak for nominating Michael by tweeting me!

Sinner

Pressure is mounting for Paul Vickers, chair of the funding body for the Independent Press Standards Organisation (Ipso), to step down.

The call is in light of the alleged ‘industrial-scale’ phone hacking at Trinity Mirror, the company he was legal director of before he was made redundant last October, having spent 22 years there.

Campaign group Hacked Off is to call on the News Media Association, which represents newspaper groups, and the PPA for magazines, to remove Vickers from the role.

It’s been nearly nine years since the News of the World hacking scandal first broke, and it’s still rearing its head, with the Guardian’s Roy Greenslade backing Vickers’ departure, claiming that Trinity Mirror’s board was both guilty of burying its head in the sand and naivety.

Greenslade asked people to remember that hacking led to the setting up of the Leveson inquiry – which, in turn, led to newspaper publishers setting up Ipso, under the leadership of Vickers.

Rich Leigh is the founder of PR agency Rich Leigh & Company, which has a focus on personal PR. If you spot any PR winners or sinners this week, tweet them to @RichLeighPR

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