People News: SnowSports Industries America, AlliedPRA,, MCI USA All Name New Leaders

February 23, 2016

The past month has marked a busy time, with several companies not only bringing on new employees, but also naming people into top positions.

SnowSports Industries America, the snow sports industry’s member-owned trade association, has named Nick Sargent as SIA president.

Sargent, who joined the organization in August 2015 as SIA’s incoming president, has spent the last five months working alongside exiting President David Ingemie.

“Nick holds a background in all aspects of the snow sports industry, which has proved to be extraordinarily beneficial in helping to strategize future growth,” said Bob Gundram, chair of SIA’s Board of Directors, and CEO of C3. “I look forward to seeing Nick utilize his passion and expertise in leading the organization and industry.”

Prior to beginning his transitional role as SIA’s incoming president, Sargent led partnership marketing initiatives for Burton Snowboards as vice president of Global Business Alliance, where he grew the brand’s globally recognized partner portfolio while expanding its global alliances.

AlliedPRA, a Destination Management Company, announced that industry veteran, Tony Lorenz, CMM has joined the award-winning company as its new CEO.

He will serve alongside Denise Dornfeld, whose position elevates from president to chairperson of AlliedPRA.

“2016 is set to be a pivotal year for AlliedPRA, with new strategic partnerships, organic growth and continued client program success,” said Denise Dornfeld. “We are experiencing a positive growth path for our company, unlike any other year in the past decade. Tony is the right person to work with me, as we capitalize on the strong economic conditions and exceptional service delivery and innovative program enhancements that have clearly differentiated AlliedPRA.”

bXb Online, creator of – Best of Business, has appointed Heidi A. Voorhees as CEO, effective Jan. 25.  Voorhees also was elected to the board of directors of bXb Online.

Tony Lorenz, co-Founder and CEO, will continue to serve as a primary shareholder, member of the executive committee of the bXb Board, and strategic advisor to the company as he takes the role of CEO of AlliedPRA.

Lorenz said, “Heidi is a highly respected association executive. We met during my time at Freeman years ago, and I have been trying to identify a way to work closely with her ever since. Heidi had an advisory role at the launch of, and was instrumental in ensuring that we designed the platform to meet the needs of the association market and, most importantly, the members and customers whom associations serve.”

The MCI Group, the world’s largest international provider of strategic engagement and activation solutions, has announced the official launch of MCI USA.

MCI USA was born out of MCI’s merger with U.S.-based Coulter Companies, which serves associations and other non-profit entities through its association management and consulting divisions, as well as global corporate brands through its experiential marketing and events division. Coulter Companies, together with all other existing and new United States operations, is now consolidated under the MCI USA brand.

Coulter Companies founder Thomas Coulter Gibson has been appointed CEO, MCI USA. Erin M. Fuller, FASAE, CAE will serve as president, MCI USA Association Management & Consulting, and Blake Kotenbrink has been appointed president of MCI USA’s luxury experiential events division. 

Underscoring its commitment to SEM service delivery in the United States, Shawn L. Pierce has been tapped as president, SEM for MCI USA. Pierce brings proven leadership in developing businesses powered by delivering strategic event solutions.

Fern has hired Jeffrey Hoffend as vice president, National Sales. Hoffend will lead Fern's national sales team.

"Jeff is well respected throughout the industry and is known for his leadership and integrity," said Aaron Bludworth, CEO. "I am very pleased to have him join our team and have full confidence in his ability to provide leadership to a critical part of our growing business."

Visit KC, Kansas City’s convention and visitors bureau, made two recent promotions. Cindy Dowers is now director of marketing and communications, while Dustin Wolfe now assumes the role of partnership development manager.

Dowers joined the destination marketing organization in 2012 as director of marketing. In addition to overseeing Visit KC’s robust advertising campaign, as of November her expanded new role includes the day-to-day management of the Marketing & Communications department.

The 11-person team encompasses online marketing, graphic design, public relations, social media and film. She brings to the role more than 20 years of experience in sales and consumer marketing.

Wolfe joined the organization in June 2015 as a marketing and communications coordinator. Under his new title of partnership development manager, Wolfe will be responsible for the organization’s partnership recruitment and sales, such as advertising opportunities on the organization’s website,

Nth Degree, a leading full-service global event marketing and labor management company, has promoted industry and company-veteran Robert Lowe to president, Events. In this key senior leadership role, Lowe will lead the growth and development of Nth Degree’s events business by adding new skills and tools, penetrating new markets, and expanding the group’s global capabilities.

SmartSource Computer & Audio Visual Rentals has appointed Mary Caldiero as digital marketing manager. Caldiero will be responsible for leading the company’s digital marketing strategy, including social media, blog, web content, email campaigns and search engine marketing and optimization (SEM and SEO).

Eagle Management Group Inc. (“Eagle”) has promoted David Holloway to president.  Holloway joined Eagle in 2013 as controller after earning his CPA from the State of New Jersey and his MBA degree from Rowan University. 

After one year as controller, he was quickly promoted to vice president of Finance and joined Eagle’s leadership team.  

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