James is currently leading media and public affairs activity for the English Institute of Sport and has over 14 years of experience in the communications industry, including roles in the corporate sector and for the UK Government.
James replaces interim Head of Communications Amanda McDonald, who is stepping away from the role in the new year and returning her focus back to the BAFA registrations team.
BAFA Chief Executive Pete Ackerley said: “I’m delighted to have appointed James as our new Head of Communications. James brings great experience within communications across sport, business and politics, and has a clear vision of how the communications strategy can support our objectives as an organization. James has a real passion for American football and I’m hugely looking forward to working alongside him as we continue to grow our great game.”
Pete also added: “The board and I would like give our sincere thanks to Amanda McDonald for stepping into the interim role as Head of Comms for BAFA until James was appointed. She’s done a fantastic job in addition to her main role with registrations and has been a great help, support and wise counsel to me since my appointment. She’s a crucial part of the BAFA team and I look forward to continuing working closely with her into an exciting 2020 for British American Football.”
James Platt said: “This is such an exciting time for American football in Britain, with interest in the sport growing at an unprecedented level. I’m absolutely thrilled to be part of this journey with the British American Football Association.
“Pete has an ambitious vision for the future of the organisation and one that I fully support and believe we can achieve. The passion within the game is clear and I want to help tell the great stories that are taking place within the sport every day.
“I’ve been a massive American football fan since the early nineties, with the New York Giants my team in the NFL – a great choice back then, but not looking so good currently! To take on this position, combining my love for the game with the experience I have working in communications, is something I feel very fortunate to do.”
After a brief stint as a sports journalist for The Independent, James moved onto global PR agency Hill + Knowlton, working with clients such as Adidas and Gillette. He then took a position within the business department of the UK Government, advising senior political figures on communications and media strategy, including Sir Vince Cable, Sir Ed Davey and Lord Alan Sugar. Following a period working in corporate communications, including heading up the UK media department for one of world’s leading energy companies, James moved to the English Institute of Sport – working alongside athletes, sports scientists and over 40 Olympic and Paralympic National Governing Bodies.
In the role of Head of Communications at BAFA, James will develop and implement the ongoing communications strategy for the organisation, reporting directly to Pete Ackerley. Stevie Benton, External Relations Manager, and John Kohl, Assistant Design and Communications manager who were appointed earlier this year, will report to James.