A key DUP strategist has left his role at the party to take up a senior position at a public relations firm in Belfast.
Richard Bullick, who served as an aide to three successive first ministers, has left the party after 17 years of service.
The News Letter revealed that Mr Bullick left his role on Wednesday to start a new job at MCE Public Affairs.
Up until the collapse of the Executive Mr Bullick was the senior special advisor to Arlene Foster and since January he has continued to work for the party.
A DUP spokesman said: "Richard is a very able and talented person who has been involved in working for the party since 2000 and has had a very significant input into the party since then.
"Everyone in the party recognises the talent which he has.”
The DUP said Mr Bullick was expected to continue to "offer advice and guidance" in the future as he remained supportive of the party.
MCE Public Affairs managing director Paul McErlean said: “Richard is widely respected and he has a wealth of experience and insight at all levels of government, which we believe will be of real benefit to our clients.
He added: “This appointment shows that the brightest and best people can be attracted to public relations and public affairs, thereby lifting the standard of our services and the value we bring to our clients.”