Katie Cotton, the woman in charge of Apple’s worldwide corporate communications is undocking from the mothership after nearly two decades of service at Apple, according to a report from Re/code.
Cotton has been one of Apple’s top ranking female VPs since joining the company 18 years ago and has been crucial in shaping the media narrative around pretty much every product from the iPod to the iPad.
Apple spokesman Steve Dowling had the following to say about Cotton’s departure:
“Katie has given her all to this company for over 18 years. She has wanted to spend time with her children for some time now. We are really going to miss her.”
Apple’s PR department is notorious for being tight-lipped with the press thanks to Katie’s role in creating an air of mystique and exclusivity around the Apple brand.
Katie served as the gatekeeper to Steve Jobs and was fiercely protective of his health issues before his passing. Now she can be spotted within arms-reach of Tim Cook and other top execs at Apple keynotes. Her hardline tactics were often a source of humor in the hilariously popular Secret Diary of Steve Jobs series.
Cotton also told Re/code the move is the hardest one she’s had to make in her career, “This is hard for me. Apple is part of my heart.”
A departure date hasn’t been announced but with WWDC 2014 closing in maybe she’ll stick around for one last Apple PR pitch.