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Apple PR chief Katie Cotton retiring after 18 years

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Apple public relations chief Katie Cotton is retiring after nearly two decades with the company. As VP of worldwide corporate communications, Cotton didn't have a particularly public face, but she's played a big role in shaping the tone of product launches and Apple's persona, from its struggles in the 90s through its huge hits through the 2000s. Cotton was also known as the gatekeeper to Steve Jobs during his time as CEO, and she's been serving the same role for Tim Cook since.

"Katie has given her all to this company for over 18 years,” an Apple spokesperson tells Recode, which first reported news of Cotton's retirement. "She has wanted to spend time with her children for some time now. We are really going to miss her." A person familiar with the structure of Apple's public relations group tells us that likely replacements include Steve Dowling and Natalie Kerris, both of who have been with Apple for over a decade and throughout its ascent to a leading tech company.