Best consultants

James Holtum

James Holtum, European Affairs Director

Rasmussen Global

My Job

I work at the intersection of our political, policy, advocacy and media work in Brussels, and further afield across Europe, Washington and Asia. We are a political consultancy so look at how we can combine campaigning, high level outreach and both mainstream and social media work to change the conversation around issues and policies.

I am proud to work with a team of dedicated, bright and professional people who take on causes that they believe in; and have been able to shift the dial – for the better – on some critical issues for our democratic sovereign and corporate clients. Lately I’ve been pleased to help lead the expansion of the firm, for example into the tech space.

My Experience

Before entering consultancy, I mostly worked in the European Parliament, with over a decade in media relations across two centre-right pan-European political groups. This included seven years as a group spokesperson and head of the press and media unit. I’ve also worked on a number of successful political campaigns in the UK.

In between these roles I worked for the largest UK business organisation on their EU affairs outreach.

My Proudest Achievements

Quite a few that I’m proud of, whether steering an individual through a media crisis, or leading a successful campaign that has delivered a policy or legislative change. I’m happy to make a positive difference.

In recent years I was proud to help in the start-up phase of a new non-profit foundation called the Alliance of Democracies. My boss, Anders Fogh Rasmussen, decided to create the foundation after stepping down as NATO Secretary General in order to help strengthen the spine of the world’s democracies. I acted as media director for its inaugural Copenhagen Democracy Summit, where I worked with leaders such as Joe Biden, Tony Blair, Stephen Harper and Nick Clegg. I also helped to create the Transatlantic Commission on Election Integrity, which has become a leading bi-partisan, transatlantic body raising awareness of the next generation of disinformation and election interference, such as Artificial Intelligence-enabled disinformation.

My Education

University of Exeter, BA in Politics

My Languages

English, French

My Interests outside work

In the summer months, when not at work, you’ll probably find me at Pairi Daiza zoo near Brussels. In the winter months you’ll find me in my mini zoo at home!

My Favourite Brussels anecdote

After working with politicians for so long I have many, but half you wouldn’t believe and the other half I’d probably get sued.

Best in Brussels 2021 Report

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