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People On the Move: Autonomic, Da-Lite, HCA Distributing, iRule, CommandFusion, JVC

The latest in hirings and other notable movement within the custom electronics industry. Check back daily for updated news.

On the Move is a daily feature on Please submit your "On the Move" news to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). If you are looking for a job, or an employer searching to fill a vacant position, in the custom electronics industry please visit the CE Pro Career Center.

April 15, 2014
Autonomic has joined the HTSA (Home Technology Specialists of America) buying group. Aaron Chisena, director of global sales for Autonomic, attended the late March HTSA Spring Conference held in Scottsdale, Ariz., and took away some valuable insights in discussions with integrators, including a growing trend toward high-resolution music and an overall emphasis on quality sound. He cited companies like HD Tracks, Neil Young’s Pono, and speculation that Apple is eyeing the lossless download market has evidence.

April 11, 2014
Stephanie Shomper joins the Da-Lite Sales Team from C2G where she most recently worked in marketing. Shomper will be based in Kansas City, and responsible for all sales, training, consultant and architect activities in Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Missouri and Nebraska.

Fred Scurti rejoins the Da-Lite Sales Team from Christie Digital, and brings with him great experience and knowledge. Scurti will be based in Denver, and responsible for all sales, training, consultant and architect activities in Utah, New Mexico Wyoming, Colorado Arizona and Nevada.

April 10, 2014
HCA Distributing, the Rocky Mountain region member of the Catalyst AV distribution network has appointed several consumer electronics industry veterans to its sales force. These new employees include Michael Thompson, Brett Olkowski and Van Coble, and HCA says Thomson will serve as HCA Distributing sales manager for Utah, Western Wyoming, Western Montana and Eastern Idaho markets. Olkowski will handle will call sales, product support, and outside sales for South Colorado, and Coble's duties is as the company's new sales manager. In addition, HCA will hold its annual Vendor Expo on May 13 and 14 at its Denver headquarters.

Detroit, Mich.-based iRule, LLC announces Adam Gold as vice president of sales for iRule and On Controls. In his new role with the company Gold will lead sales efforts globally and oversee and develop iRule’s expanding network of representatives. In addition, Gold will be responsible for building new and maintaining existing customer relationships.

April 9, 2014
Benelux distributor Heuff has been appointed as the exclusive distributor of CommandFusion automation and control hardware covering the Benelux region (Belgium, Netherlands, Luxembourg). Europe is an important region for CommandFusion, the company notes, as it represents an area of significant growth for the company’s hardware products. The appointment will ensure that local integrators have access to Dutch/English speaking support staff trained in CommandFusion products, the company adds.

April 8, 2014
JVC Americas Corp. and Kenwood USA Corporation, both subsidiaries of Japan-based JVC Kenwood Corporation, jointly announced their schedule to merge operations and form a single subsidiary in the United States, JVC Kenwood USA Corporation. This merger is part of the continued global integration strategy that JVC Kenwood Corporation first implemented in 2012.

The timeline for integration, announced by JVC Americas President/CEO Junji Kobayashi and Kenwood USA Corporation President/CEO Ryo Mizuhara, will be effective October 1, 2014. “This merger will allow us to operate more efficiently by sharing resources and standardizing processes,” says Kobayashi. JVC and Kenwood products will remain as two distinct brands in their respective user markets and sales channels. This integration continues JVC Kenwood Corporation’s worldwide process that will result in a more efficient organization and further elevate the equity of the JVC and Kenwood brands.


Atlona, a manufacturer of A/V distribution solutions has announced it has hired Victor Baut as its national sales manager, residential. Baut will oversee Atlona's residential sales throughout the United States and Canada.


Genelec Inc., the U.S. distributor of Genelec Home Audio Systems, has appointed Whitestone, New York-based Big Apple Technology to serve as its new Metro New York City area manufacturer’s representative. Led by company president Joseph Frattasi and sales reps Doug Lee and John Frattasi, Big Apple Technology will be responsible for increasing market share for Genelec in the custom/home installation market throughout New York City and its suburbs.

April 7, 2014
Velodyne has appointed long-time employee Rob Morse to the post of director of business development for audio. Morse joined Velodyne in 2006 as an audio product support specialist responsible for post-sales and technical assistance to Velodyne’s dealer network and end-users. Later Morse was named product support specialist for Velodyne’s LiDAR division before his latest promotion.

April 4, 2014

Digital Monitoring Products (DMP) has named Hunter Pardue to the position of dealer development manager in the company’s South East Region. He will be responsible for developing new sales and providing ongoing service to DMP-authorized dealers in Georgia, South Carolina, and the Florida Panhandle, and will be helping them to grow their businesses.

Prior to joining DMP, Pardue was a sales account manager for DH Pace Systems Integration. He gained additional industry experience in his previous role as a sales account manager at Linder Security Systems in Georgia. He also started, owned, and operated a residential/commercial security company.


Hank Finke
has been named director of sales at NEAR, a division of Bogen Communications. Finke had served most recently in the same role at Audio Xperts until that organization closed its doors abruptly last year.

NEAR (New England Audio Resource) had drifted away from the U.S. speaker business for a few years, but returned last year with a line of outdoor speakers developed in conjunction with industry veterans Allen Boothroyd (industrial designer) and Jeff Kussard (sales and marketing consultant).

April 1, 2014
Alistair Levine has returned to California Audio Technology (CAT) as international sale manager for the ultra high performance luxury audio brand. He had held that same position from 2010 to 2013, but left briefly to serve as regional sales director for the Dubai integration firm Archimedia.
Jay Minsky has joined Control4 as area sales manager. Prior to joining the home automation company, he spent more than 20 years as a trainer and manufacturers' rep in the home automation and home entertainment industry, most recently as principal of the New York-based rep firm Connected Marketing.

March 31, 2014
Robert A. Cole, founder and CEO of World Wide Stereohas been named a finalist in the SmartCEO Voltage Awards for 2014.

Each year SmartCEO, a prominent business publication, celebrates the role that technology plays in the Greater Philadelphia area business community by presenting awards to executives who are leaders in technology innovation. Finalists and winners are selected by an independent committee of local business leaders. Cole and his fellow finalists will be profiled in the May/June issue of SmartCEO and celebrated by over 350 executives and guests at the Voltage Awards ceremony on May 29th, 2014 at Ballroom at the Ben in Philadelphia.

"I am honored to be recognized as a finalist in the 2014 Voltage Awards," says Cole, "Technology is continuously evolving, and World Wide Stereo is thrilled to be recognized as a vanguard and thought leader within the industry”.

March 27, 2014
Fred Bargetzi has been promoted to CTO of Crestron Electronics. A 25-year Crestron veteran, Bargetzi was named one of CE Pro's Unsung Heroes last year. The appointment follows the elevation of Randy Klein to president and CEO of Crestron, who succeeds Crestron founder George Feldstein in those positions. Feldstein continues to serve as chairman of the company.

March 20
Leon Speakers has announced that it has expanded its team with the hire of a new director of residential sales. Colin Wilcox will now be responsible for developing and executing growth strategies for Leon Speakers’ core business segment – the residential market. Wilcox will be based out of Leon Speakers’ Corporate Headquarters in Ann Arbor, Mich.

March 19
Savant Systems has appointed Mike Kavanaugh as sales director for the West Coast, effective April 14. Formerly the principal at MK Marketing, an independent sales representation firm for over 20 years, Kavanaugh will join Savant and personally focus on key accounts with the additional responsibility of directing Savant’s regional sales personnel along the West Coast. The company says Kavanaugh will be bringing familiar faces from his sales team with him to join Savant, including Danny Thompson, Josh Blanken, Brian McCullough and Kim Buck.

March 11
TiVo has appointed Ira Bahr as its new chief marketing officer (CMO). Bahr will oversee the company's strategic marketing efforts in support of TiVo's business around the world. Bahr will assume this new role immediately, and he will be based in TiVo's San Jose, Calif., corporate headquarters. Bahr brings to TiVo more than 25 years of experience that includes a tenure with Dish Network, and he will report directly to Tom Rogers, president and CEO of TiVo.

March 10
Constellation Audio has appointed Irv Gross as its new director of sales. With over 35 years of experience in selling audio in both the manufacturing and retail channels, Gross has worked previously at companies such as Magico Speakers and Krell Industries.

Elite Prime Vision, the dedicated CI division of Elite Screens Inc. has announced the promotion of Jeff Klida to the position of vice president of sales. Previously, Klida held the position of director of sales for the Calif.-based company.

March 6
Proficient Audio has received two Bronze "Telly Awards" for its online promotional videos for its Proficient Signature Series and Proficient MaxTV product launches videos. The videos were produced by Nino Del Padre of Del Padre Digital. These videos were in competition with over 11,000 entries from the United States.

The first video “Proficient Signature Series” is an online promotional feature to introduce Proficient Audio’s new flagship Signature Series loudspeaker and subwoofer. The second award was a product launch video for Proficient’s MaxTV, a slim-line, under-TV loudspeaker system featuring hi-fidelity sound and Bluetooth capability. The Telly Awards were founded in 1979 to honor outstanding local, regional, and cable TV commercials and programs, the finest video and film productions, and online commercials, video and films.

March 5
The DaVinci Group announced a new partnership with Positive Marketing AV to handle all distribution and product delivery of TDG Audio, Vanguard Dynamics and Blue Aura in Canada while worldwide sales representatives, LVZ International, will coordinate all dealer sales, support and training.

Daniel Kippycash, CEO and co-founder of The DaVinci Group, says. “The LVZ International team worked diligently finding the best partnership to ensure we had efficient fulfillment for our Canadian partners. The team of Positive Marketing AV brings years of experience and training to help support the growing Canadian market.”

Phillip Bond, president of Positive Marketing AV, notes, “We have the complete brand offerings of TDG Audio, Vanguard Dynamics and Blue Aura in our warehouse ready to support the Canadian dealer base for The DaVinci Group.”

JVC Professional Products Company, a division of JVC Americas Corp., announced Larry Librach has been promoted to senior vice president of JVC Professional Products. A 32-year JVC veteran, most recently serving as vice president, Broadcast and Public Sector, Librach will be responsible for the overall guidance and direction of the company’s sales and management.

March 4
Haier America, makers of flat panel TVs and smart appliances, has announced the expansion of its operations in the Americas with the planned opening of a new headquarters in Wayne, N.J. in the third quarter of 2014. Renovations are underway on the 56,000 square-foot facility at 1800 Valley Road which will be redesigned over the next few months and be home to Haier America's current staff with room for future expansion. The space will include a new showroom, training centers and customer service operations. Haier employs 70,000 people worldwide and had 2013 revenues of $29.5 billion.

Graybar has opened a new distribution branch for dispensing electrical, communications and data networking products in Harrisonburg, Va. Located at 3175 South Main Street, the branch will serve the Harrisonburg and Charlottesville metropolitan areas, as well as Waynesboro, Va., Staunton, Va., and Albemarle, Nelson, Augusta, Culpeper, Greene, Highland, Shenandoah and Rockingham counties. The branch will operate from 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday, with after-hours emergency service available. The branch can be reached at (540) 214-3200. A grand opening celebration is planned for April 30.

March 3
Jeff Madison has been named CEO of RPG Diffusor Systems, maker of high-performance acoustical products. He joined the company in 2004 as a division director and most recently served as executive vice president.

Legrand has announced the addition of Ryan St. John to the position of educational specialist. St. John will be responsible for the company’s NuVo and On-Q product lines, and Legrand states that his experience and technical background will strengthen its relationships within the market.

February 26
Axis Communications has announced nine promotions in its North American team as a direct result of the recently unveiled U.S. Expansion Plan designed to bring the company closer to its partner network and mutual end-customers. Axis’ three National Sales Managers have been promoted to Business Area Managers and are responsible for the planning and execution of all operations originating from their Business Area office: Karl Radke, Midwest; Bill Wendlandt, West; and Ted Wilkinson, Northeast. Additionally, six Axis Regional Sales Managers have been promoted to Area Sales Managers to provide leadership, direction and support to the sales team in their respective Business Area: Chris Cavey, South Central; Steve Darragh, Mid-Atlantic; Tom Kelley, Northeast; Kyle Reinoehl, Midwest; Steve Stanberry, West; and Paul Thompsen, Southeast.

As part of the Expansion Plan, Axis designated six Business Areas in the U.S., namely the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, Southeast, Midwest, South Central and West. Each Business Area will have a dedicated customer-facing office with a customized Axis Experience Center, training facilities and boardroom-style meeting rooms. Sales, engineering and local event marketing will be based out of each office. Axis Area Sales Managers will report directly to the individual Business Area Managers and are responsible for managing the sales teams in each of the 24 newly defined sales regions.

Industry veteran Stephen DeFuria has been named director of sales, East, for VANA Ltd., North American distributors of Vienna Acoustics (loudspeakers), IsoTek (power conditioning), Primare Electronics (A/V electronics), Dr. Feickert Analogue (turntables), Okki Nokki (record cleaners), Acoustical Systems (tone arms and analog accessories) and Blue Horizon (audio accessories). DeFuria joins industry veteran Stirling Trayle as a key member of the Seattle-based sales organization.

Vivint, the No. 2 company in the CE Pro 100, has named former Nike exec Jeff Lyman as its chief marketing officer. As CMO, he will lead marketing and communication initiatives that elevate Vivint's brand awareness and drive adoption of its security, home automation, and energy management services. He is also responsible for positioning the Vivint brand across all business units.

February 25
The DaVinci Group has named Shannon Riffle as regional sales manager covering the Midwest and Northeast regions of the United States. Riffle has spent the last 17 years in the architectural audio channel. His experience includes positions of regional sales manager with SpeakerCraft and national sales manager with Current Audio.

The Home Technology Specialists of America (HTSA) buying group has announced its latest members. Joining HTSA are Naples, Fla.-based Epic Audio Video and Dayton, Ohio-based Hanson Audio Video. Epic is a 25-year-old company with a vast amount of experience installing large integrated systems. Hanson AV opened its doors in 1999 and offers everything from high-performance two-channel systems, to advanced automation systems.

February 21
JVC Americas Corp. today announced Bob Mueller, U.S. president of JVC Professional Products Company, has retired from the company, effective today. Mueller joined JVC in 2000 to lead its professional products company.

“Bob has been planning his retirement for some time. He delayed his final date to support JVC with many business projects, but is finally ready to begin his ‘new’ life,” said Mr. Junji Kobayashi, president, JVC Americas Corp. “We want to thank Bob for his 14 years of leadership at JVC and wish him an enjoyable retirement.”

February 20
Savant Systems has announced that The Rimmer Consulting Group, LLC has been appointed as independent sales representation for the Savant brand in Mexico. Based in Phoenix, AZ, Rimmer Consulting will provide sales and technical support in the region and currently operates an office in Mexico City.

"Mexico represents a dynamic marketplace and a wonderful opportunity for Savant," explained JC Murphy, Savant's Executive Vice President, Global Sales. "We look forward to working with John and his highly qualified team to bring our mid-market and premium control and automation solutions to both residential and commercial integrators throughout the region."

February 17
imageJim Hawthorne
Digital Monitoring Products (DMP) has named Jim Hawthorne to the position of director of sales, East. In his latest role at DMP, he will manage, guide, motivate, and lead the DMP Dealer Development Managers (DDMs) in the East region to ensure they meet or exceed both company objectives and customer expectations.

Prior to his current position, Jim was the Regional Sales Manager for the DMP Southeast sales territory. Jim brings over 20 years of security industry experience to his new, expanded role.

Effective on March 1, Fortress Seating is moving to a new larger headquarters location to better serve its customers. The new address is 1721 Wright Ave, La Verne, CA 91750; Phone: 909-593-8600; Fax: 866-483-6420.

February 13
Barrie McCorkle
Inada USA, the exclusive U.S. distributor for Inada brand massage chair products, has hired Barrie McCorkle as consumer electronics channel director of sales and training. Most recently, McCorkle was director of membership for Specialty Electronics Nationwide (SEN), the A/V specialty division of the Nationwide Marketing Group. The bulk of his career was spent at Design Audio/Video, a Colorado hybrid A/V dealer, where he was vice president and co-owner.

February 12
Triad Speakers has appointed Atlantic Integrated as its new independent sales rep agency for New York City, Long Island and Northern New Jersey.

Triad, which specializes in front-channel speakers, surrounds, subwoofers and distributed audio speakers via enclosed in-wall, in-ceiling, on-wall and freestanding designs, was founded 32 years ago. Atlantic Integrated has been in existence for 11 years. Sales are handled by principal David Humphries, vice president Michael Pawlowski, and sales manager Benjamin Shreier, whose combined custom installation experience totals more than 50 years.

February 6, 2014
Aim High Audio has named Bill Busser and Mike Lopes to its sales and distribution team representing the Florida territory. Busser will be the North Florida territory manager. He has 20-plus years’ experience selling consumer and PRO electronics equipment to the channel in the U.S., Canada and Mexico. He has worked as a buyer for a national low voltage retailer creating bundled packages for builders.

Mike Lopes has been in the CE industry for 15 years, working for both big box retailers and custom integration companies, and most recently as the Southeast rep for a buying group. Mike joins the team as Florida territory manager.

"I couldn't be more pleased with our new additions to the Aim High Audio team. Bill and Mike bring years of industry experience and very strong relationships in Florida. Adding Bill and Mike to our Florida team will allow us to service our partners more effectively and efficiently," says Chris Gilray, president of Aim High Audio.

February 5, 2014
Nationwide East, a regional division of Nationwide Marketing Group in Winston-Salem, N.C., announces Dale Wright as the new territory manager covering Michigan, Ohio, Kentucky and Southern Indiana. Wright brings more than 25 years of experience in the appliance and furniture industries and the buying group business to the Nationwide East Group. As a resident in the area, he will spend much of his time in the field calling on dealers and becoming familiar with their unique marketplace issues and competition.

February 4, 2014
Leon Speakers has partnered with two international sales management consultants to handle its international sales and logistics. Paul Sabbah and Gary Vlaeminck will work together to fill out Leon’s network of international dealers and distributors in markets including Russia, Africa and the Middle East, while working with current Leon distributors to build the business.

Since 2007 Paul Sabbah has been selling CE and CI products in 50 countries around the world, including Salamander Designs. He is a Trustee of the CEA Foundation and has deep ties in the A/V industry and a vast knowledge of international markets. Gary Vlaeminck has a 19-year track record of success in global sales strategy and management at some of the world’s leading A/V companies including Lutron, SpeakerCraft and Liberty AV.

<January 30, 2014

Display Development has announced that Cinema di Cuore and its principal Trayce Blake is representing the video manufacturer in Southern California.

<January 29, 2014
Noble Fidelity has named Woodland Hills, Calif.-based Chris Dixon Company as its new Southern California representative.

“With the recent launch of our award-winning mk ll version of our most popular loudspeaker – the L-85– as well as our other exciting products and new sales and marketing initiatives, we needed to expand our reach into the vitally important Southern California market,” explained Greg Ford, principal of Noble Fidelity. “Chris Dixon and his staff have a proven track record in this territory, and they have an outstanding line card. We are proud to have the Chris Dixon Company join the Noble Fidelity team and we are excited to get started with them.”

January 27, 2014
Carlos Moran passed away after losing his battle with cancer. He was an industry veteran who most recently was a regional sales manager for AMX. Previously, Moran held the position of field supervisor for Tweeter and Sound Advice. Earlier in his career, he spent four years at Niles audio in technical support and product development.

Tony Weber, a musician and longtime audio-industry veteran, passed away on January 23. He spent decades in sales at MSE Audio, BG Radia, Cary Audio and most recently MIT Cables. CE Pro has posted a tribute to Weber here.

Crestron has named Kathryn Cordina as its new regional sales manager for commercial customers in the New York Metro area. Kathryn, who will be based in central New Jersey, has more than 18 years of experience in A/V sales and support. Most recently she held the position of director of sales for TOTUS Solutions, an integrated LED lighting, security and surveillance company.

“As we’ve experienced remarkable growth opportunities in the region, we knew we needed to bring on additional resources,” says Chris Perkins, Crestron executive director. “Kathryn was the perfect candidate for the position as she’s extremely detail-oriented, organized, and brings an exemplary track record of success in AV sales and support. She will be a tremendous asset to our customers on many levels.”

LVZ International, rep firm based in Vancouver, B.C., Canada, has named Nikolai Efimov as business development manager for Eastern Europe. Efimov brings 18 years in the Eastern European market growing sales in the territory, opening new distribution channels and entering new diversified markets representing such lines as SpeakerCraft, Lutron, Crestron, Niles, Da-Lite and Proficient Audio.

January 24, 2014
Leviton has joined the Communications Cable and Connectivity Association (CCCA), a non-profit group of leading cabling manufacturers, distributors and material suppliers. And Ross Goldman, executive VP & GM, Leviton Network Solutions, has joined the CCCA Board of Directors.

Counterfeit and non-compliant products are two of the many issues CCCA is actively educating the industry about to advance quality and protect consumers of cabling and connectivity products. Other CCCA initiatives include guidance on the pros and cons of data center cabling architecture designs and collaboration with other groups on the development of industry best practices for sustainable, smart building infrastructures.

“Leviton has followed the CCCA and has been impressed with its initiatives and focus on education and creating awareness,” says Goldman. “We view CCCA as a strong industry association and an excellent platform for Leviton to address issues important to the structured cabling industry and to advance quality.”

January 17, 2014
Bryston has named AUDTEK Sales & Marketing as its independent Rep-of-the-Year for 2013. Based in New York City, AUDTEK covers the metro tri-state region for audio products manufacturers.

January 16, 2014
Draper, a manufacturer of video screens and motorized window treatments, has been named America's Healthiest Workplace by Healthiest Employers LLC, a national organization dedicated to help improve the wellness of American workers.

"We are honored to receive this recognition,” says John Pidgeon, President of Draper. “We want to commend Draper’s Safety and Wellness Director, Linda Brinson, and the members of our Wellness Committee for their hard work, and all Draper employees and their family members who have supported this effort. We also want to recognize the Henry County Hospital, who staff the Draper employee health clinic and share the cost of an employee health coach with us.”

BlackWire Designs a manufacturer/distributor for custom integrators, announces Innovative Consulting & Marketing as the rep for Arizona, Southern Nevada, New Mexico and El Paso, Texas markets.

January 15, 2014
Andrew Bonham has been named group vice president, Residential Ventilation (RESV) for Nortek, Inc. (Nasdaq: NTK). Since 2005 Bonham had been with W.R. Grace, where he was most recently president of Grace Construction Products, a $1.1 billion division focused on the heavy building materials and construction chemicals sectors. Nortek's brands in the RESV group include Broan, Nutone, Venmar, Best and Zephyr.

Aim High Audio has added Mark Garijanian as inside sales manager and Susan Clancy as office manager.

Garijanian has been in the A/V industry for seven years. He graduated from Kennesaw State University in 2006 with a degree in communications. After college, Mark got his start in audio/visual distribution sales where he has supported D&M products and many other highly reputable consumer electronics lines. He then transitioned to branch manager in 2011 where he was in charge of the southeast operation of Electronic Source, an A/V distribution company, until making his way to the Aim High family in 2014.

Clancy will provide dealer and manufacturer operational support. Susan started in this industry back in 2003 and continued for six years until the economic downturn caused her to pursue other opportunities. As the economy began to come back she was asked to bring her expertise and commitment to customer support and re-enter the distribution side of our industry.

“Much of AHA Distributing's success has been due to the fact that we surround ourselves with excellence, as it relates to both the manufacturer and our own team,” says Chris Gilray, president of Aim High Audio. “Susan and Mark have a proven track record of going the extra mile to ensure the customer has an awesome experience and will support with passion, our team slogan 'Strong Relationships, Superior Customer Service'. We are thrilled with the addition of both Susan and Mark and know they will be key elements with the continued growth of AHA.”

January 14, 2014, a private marketplace for dealers to buy, sell, and trade excess inventory, has added support for Canadian dealers.

January 9, 2014
Legrand has promoted Joshua Roberson to national builder sales manager. Roberson has been with Legrand since May 2005. He will represent the On-Q, NuVo, adorne and Pass & Seymour product lines by Legrand.

January 3, 2014
The DaVinci Group (TDG) is filling out its rep and distribution networks. The company had particular territories where it wanted manufacturer's reps, according to CEO and co-founder Dan Kippycash. The new reps are N&S Marketing (Wash, Ore., Alaska and No. Idaho), Cardinal Sales (Ky., Ind., Ohio and Western Penn.), Boyle Sales (Mich.,) and Sound Product Marketing (N.Y.). On the distribution side, the company has added eight new partners that will be stocking TDG Audio's Vanguard Dynamics and Blue Aura product lines: Aim High Audio Distribution, AV Warehouse, Cutting Edge Distribution, Sound Product Distributing, ACE Marketing & Distribution, N&S Distribution, New Image Marketing and Custom Distribution Ltd.

January 2, 2014
Chris and Sarah Pruet have launched the rep firm CSP Marketing in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. Previously, Chris Pruet was a sales rep for distributors AVAD and Wave Electronics. CSP will be representing Zuum Media, HydraConnect, Noble Fidelity, Seymour Screen Excellence, AudioSource, Westone Audio, WASP, WELD2 and First Impressions.

December 23, 2013
LeisureTech has named Brian Johnson manager of technical services and product development.

Johnson will be conducting a review of the A-BUS Standard to introduce new protocols for system control via new technologies.

This is a key strategic move which will result in new A-BUS technologies and products that are relevant to the current and future generation of multiroom products and new developments that incorporate modern content delivery, wireless technologies, smartphone and Pad control.

“Brian is a highly qualified electrical engineer with extensive experience in product development and manufacturing, he has also received two Duke of Edinburgh Awards for Industrial Design," says Andrew Goldfinch, managing director and inventor of A-BUS CAT5 technology.

“I have always been fascinated how well A-BUS CAT5 technology has worked in the market place. Its simplicity is a much needed commodity in a field that often confuses," says Johnson. "A-BUS is ideally situated to integrate with new IP based technologies to make MRA easier to install and easier operate.“

December 20, 2013
Core Brands has appointed Steve Jain to the position of director of retail sales.

“We are pleased to announce the addition of Steve Jain to the Core Brands team,” says Dave Keller, Core Brands Vice President of Sales. “Steve will be instrumental in building the Core Brands presence in the consumer retail channel. He is an industry pro who has driven sales growth for brands such as Denon, Boston Acoustics, JVC, Marantz and Panasonic.”

Jain comes to Core Brands from DEI Holdings, where he served as the director of sales, driving the launch of BOOM, the youth culture brand of audio products. Jain served at D&M Holdings from 2010 to 2012, starting as channel development manager working in business development and strategy for ecommerce, channel management and headphone development before being promoted to National Sales Manager for Denon, Boston and Marantz.

From 2006 until 2010 he served as national accounts manager and then strategic business GM for Mobile Electronics at JVC Company of America.

December 17, 2013
Kaleidescape has named Tom Furlong as its new CEO. Furlong brings more than 30 years of experience to the position and joins Kaleidescape from Nokia, where he built a cloud-based messaging service with an active user base of over 50 million consumers. He replaces company founder Michael Malcolm, who will continue to serve as chairman of Kaleidescape's board of directors.

Prior to Nokia, Furlong served in several executive roles: as the COO of Kiyon, a wireless networking company; as senior vice president of marketing, engineering, and operations for SonicWALL, an Internet security company; and as the senior vice president and general manager of workstations at SGI, the company that revolutionized animation and media production.

"Kaleidescape built a leading brand in the home theater market by delivering entertainment without compromise to tens of thousands of people worldwide, and Tom is the perfect individual to take our products to a wider audience," says Malcolm. "He has substantial relevant technical expertise and brings extensive experience in leading and scaling businesses, growing teams, and driving execution. This experience, coupled with his passion for consumer products, has prepared Tom to lead Kaleidescape, and I look forward to seeing his leadership skills in action."

"Kaleidescape has redefined the home theater experience by combining terrific quality with incredible simplicity," says Furlong. "Kaleidescape's achievements have been tremendous and worthy of the industry accolades, awards, and customer loyalty earned over the last decade. I am excited to step into this new role, and look forward to taking the Kaleidescape vision to the next level."

December 12, 2013
Middle Atlantic Products has named Blake Brubaker as regional sales manager for Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota, South Dakota and North Dakota. Brubaker will manage sales for the A/V, security, data and residential market segments while ensuring that Middle Atlantic factory sales reps are properly trained and equipped with the right tools to effectively represent the company. He will also provide support with sales calls, trade shows and direct customer contact.

Prior to joining Middle Atlantic, Brubaker spent 19 years at the Da-Lite, working his way up to VP of Sales with overall responsibility for the customer service, residential sales and A/V consultant liaison departments.

“I am very excited about being part of the Middle Atlantic family. Having spent much of my career with a U.S.-based manufacturer in the audiovisual industry, this is a perfect fit and really feels like home to me," Brubaker says. "They are a great group of people who work hard and have fun doing it. You couldn’t ask for more.”

December 11, 2013
Adam Audio has named Michael Prager director of U.S. sales. Prager will be responsible for all sales activity including direct accounts and sales representatives, as well as overseeing the marketing for Adam’s Professional line.

Prager has been professionally involved with music and recording technology for over fifteen years, most recently for seven years as recording buyer at Guitar Center. Prior to Guitar Center, Prager worked with leading brands such as Cakewalk, Steinberg, Disney Interactive, Spectrasonics, Q Up Arts and Sony Classical, as well as the Columbia College of Hollywood, CA and Keyboard Magazine. He has also authored several popular books and CDs on recording software and hardware for Cengage Learning.

“We are proud to have Michael Prager on board as the head of our U.S. sales team. He comes to us with extensive and varied experience in the market that will enable us to grow to new levels in the future," says Adam Audio USA president Roger Fortier. "Michael’s insights, energy and exceptional focus have been evident from his first day, and we look forward to building the brand with him for many years to come.”

December 10, 2013
Control4 has opened a new Technical Center in Bangalore, India. The new Technical Center features state-of-the-art training facilities, a demonstration showroom, as well as offices and conference space for Control4 employees, visiting strategic partners and dealers, according to the company. Located in the World Trade Center Bangalore building, the Technical Center will begin hosting on-site training courses for new and existing dealers beginning in January 2014.

International manufacturers' rep firm Custom Solutions International (CSI) has added Karem Banna to its team. He is responsible for managing all of CSI’s business in Canada as well as supporting and growing CSI’s efforts in other international territories. Banna also will be CSI’s TRUFIG brand manager in addition to other select brands. Previously, he held positions with Panasonic, Blackberry, Audio Video Innovations and Trends Electronics.

Clare Controls has appointed The New York Marketing Team (NYMT) to serve as a manufacturer’s sales representative throughout the New York City Metropolitan area.

“The New York Marketing Team has long believed that IP and cloud-based systems represented the future of automation and the delivery of content for our Partners in the custom channel,” says NYMT president Mark Friedman. “As we researched the field, we quickly realized that the Clare solution was ahead of its competition. The ability to program, upgrade and troubleshoot the system remotely gives a huge advantage to Clare automation integrators. Accordingly, we are extremely happy to be representing Clare Controls in our market and we believe their solutions will become cornerstone lines for our firm.”

December 3, 2013
Soundcast Systems has hired Jesse Coyer to fill the role of director of training as part of its accelerated business growth plan underway. Coyer started in sales at Ultimate Electronics and later joined Magnolia Home Theater as a supervisor, then to in-home sales with their Geek Squad. He helped develop their scalable field selling and training program before being promoted in 2009 to the Best Buy corporate leadership team, where he was responsible for Magnolia Home Theater sales, training and operations strategy.

December 2, 2013
CE distributor Stampede Presentation Products, Inc. announces the opening of a new field sales office in Seattle and plans to open its first Southwest field sales office in Phoenix by March 2014. The two new branches join the company’s other field sales offices located in Amherst, N.Y. (Stampede’s headquarters), Atlanta, Miami and Columbus, Ohio. Stampede President & COO Kevin Kelly says the distributor has tripled the size of its Phoenix warehouse and will be expanding the near-capacity Atlanta operation in the new year.

November 26, 2013
Industry veteran Justin Spingler is now director of sales at Custom Consulting, a manufacturers rep firm that covers the NY Metro & Middle Atlantic territories. Prior to joining Custom Consulting, Justin worked in all four corners of the CE world starting his career as an integrator, distributor, and most notably as the marketing manager for Marantz America at D&M Holdings. "We are excited to welcome Justin to our family, and pleased to be able to add someone with his experience and credentials" says Eric Worst, founder of Custom Consulting. "His vast knowledge within all aspects of the industry make him an invaluable addition to the team."

November 21, 2013
Greg Chouinard has joined Legrand as market manager for the Home Systems Division, covering the Pacific Northwest and Alaska. Chouinard has over 20 years of sales experience, including positions in retail to low-voltage distribution and integration. He most recently comes from the security and LV distributor Tri-Ed, where he served as sales representative.

November 20, 2013
David Sutton has joined Xtreme Cables, a maker of screen protectors, cables, mounts, headphones and other accessories, as product manager. Previously he was the CEO of Cortexa Automation for two years.

Industry veteran Jeffrey Talmadge has joined WASP Audio as VP technology and integration. WASP is a maker of wireless audio solutions for new construction and retrofit installs. Prior to joining WASP, Talmadge was a product and technical sales manager at Lenbrook America. Before that, he spent almost six years as director of product development and systems integration for Denon.

November 20, 2013
Matthew Bute, Atlona
Matthew Bute has been promoted to director of global sales for Atlona, provider of connectivity solutions for audio, video and IT. He was hired in 2013 as channel/partner marketing manager. Previously, he spent two years at Clare Controls and, before that, nine years as general manager of the integration firm Tempus Electronic Lifestyles.

Linear LLC announces the appointment of Kevin Ward as product line manager in charge of garage door operators, gate operators, and telephone entry systems. Kevin is a 15 year veteran of Linear, having previously served as engineering manager in the company's Grand Rapids, MI location. Ward will report to John LaFond, Linear's vice president of integrated systems, who also leads the company's access control strategic business unit (SBU).

Consumer electronics industry veteran David Goldschmidt has joined Velodyne, a manufacturer of high-performance audio products, as its national sales director. Goldschmidt brings to Velodyne an extensive background in consumer electronics product development and retail sales management. From 1996 to 2009, he was VP of sales and purchasing with Airport Wireless, where he was responsible for opening some 60 airport-based high-tech retail electronics stores today organized under the APW Brands umbrella. More recently, he held senior management roles with Able Planet, where he was Eastern sales manager, and Direct Line Marketing, a company he owned that facilitated sales of new high-technology electronics direct from distributors to retailers.

November 18, 2013
Loudspeaker manufacturer Triad Speakers has appointed On The Road AV to represent the company in Michigan and Pro Audio Associates for upstate New York. "Jeff Fuerstenberg of On The Road AV is a successful and hard-working sales representative and we are pleased to add him to our team," says Triad Speakers director of North American sales Bruce Franklin. Triad has expanded the region of its New England rep firm, Pro Audio Associates, Inc. to include upstate New York. "John Eibye, who will be primarily responsible for this region, has strong relationships with the dealers there," says Franklin.

November 7, 2013
Volutone Distributing Inc. has opened its seventh location. The new self-shop facility, located in Irvine, California, is open, fully staffed and operational. Volutone has seen steady growth in the custom integration channel, with additional growth from its expanded product secured throughout 2012-13.

“Volutone, already a leader in A/V distribution, and with additional category offerings such as intrusion, surveillance, networking and commercial A/V technology, we now really set apart," says Volutone president Trevor Hansen. "Our new self shop model, which is currently being integrated into all of our locations, will also include dedicated sound and training rooms, expanded hours of operation and additional customer choices, all while maintaining our superior customer service, which continues to drive us apart from the competition”.

November 4, 2013

Core Brands has appointed Matt Dever to the position of marketing manager for its audio segment. Dever comes to his new position at Core Brands from THX, where he served as the senior director of sales and was responsible for overseeing licensing and certification programs. Prior to THX, Dever worked at Pioneer Electronics for two decades, working his way up from a district sales position in the Audio/Video Division to become a VP of sales and marketing.

Autonomic, provider of media distribution solutions, has appointed Novidor & Firestone as reps for Northern California and Northern Nevada.

October 31, 2013
Associated Volume Buyers/Brand Source has moved into a new office location: 17542 East 17th Street, Suite 250, Tustin, CA 92780. The new phone and fax numbers are (P)714-502-9620, (F)714-508-7844.

Pro Audio Technology, a supplier of loudspeakers and DSP-programmable amplifier systems, has appointed Aim High Audio Sales as a manufacturer representative for the Southeast, including Georgia, Tennessee, Alabama, Mississippi and North and South Carolina.

October 30, 2013
Atlona has named Ken Eagle as its director of training and technical sales. In his new role, Eagle is responsible for training and education, as well as presale solutions engineering. Eagle has extensive A/V industry experience across several organizations within the custom integration, sales, and training sectors. Most recently, he served as the owner and founder of a top custom integration company where he grew sales to $1 million in only six years. Previously, he held the position of regional sales manager at AVI-SPL and during a tenure at Digital Projection International (DPI), Eagle was responsible for managing outreach relations, education, and training for North America. Eagle is a registered outreach instructor for CEDIA. "Over the course of his career, Ken has demonstrated a constant commitment to developing relationships with every faction of the AV marketplace," said Ilya Khayn, president and CEO, Atlona, in a statement announcing the move. "He is extremely respected within our industry, and we look forward to applying his dynamic training programs and sales expertise to the exciting innovations that we have on the horizon."

QMotion Advanced Shading Systems announced three personnel changes. Ben Kutell is director of Strategic Programs, a newly created post that includes product management, training, trade shows and strategic programs. Kutell, joined QMotion in 2011 to oversee its marketing. Preston Stokes, a 2010 graduate of the University of West Florida, becomes QMotion’s logistics and inventory specialist, bringing experience that will improve shipping times and efficiencies. Stokes, who recently worked with a large logistics company in the Charlotte, N.C. area, will be returning home to Pensacola. Cassie Metzger heads the newly designated Brand Development Department that will ensure brand consistency, public relations strategies, website content and QMotion’s brand and reputation. Metzger has more than 20 years marketing experience, including consulting for distributors/dealers and internet start-ups. Most recently, she was senior director of marketing for a global company.

Lenbrook America, the U.S. distributor for specialty A/V brands NAD, PSB and Bluesound announced the appointment of Marshall Currier as its national trainer and technical sales support coordinator. For the past seven years, Currier served as the national training manager for Panamax/Furman/BlueBOLT and more recently, Core Brands. In that capacity, he was responsible for the development, management and delivery of all training collateral. Additionally, he created and produced the company’s online video training programs.

October 28, 2013

Planar has hired Alberto Reyes as its new account manager for the Mid-Atlantic region. Alberto is based out of the Washington, D.C. area and will manage Planar’s sales territory covering Washington D.C., Virginia, Maryland, Delaware and West Virginia. Reyes worked previously as=t General Dynamics IT (GDIT) where he was a senior systems engineer, supporting the National Geospatial Agency (NGA). Alberto has twelve years of experience in the ProAV industry with a range of experience in AV system design, installation and support and has extensive background working with a wide variety of federal and local government agencies. Planar also hired Thomas Aquino as its new Rockies regional sales manager. Based out of Denver, Thomas will cover territory including Colorado, Montana, Wyoming, Utah, North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska and New Mexico.

Buying group Home Entertainment Source (HES)/BrandSource has relocated its corporate office in Southern California. The new address is 17542 East 17th Street., Suite 250, Tustin, CA 92780. Phone: 714-502-9620. Fax: 714-508-7844.

October 24, 2013
The PowerHouse Alliance has added four new vendors: Middle Atlantic Products, Platinum Tools, Crest/Peavy and Arlington Industries. PowerHouse now has 13 members and has recently added two additional warehouse locations in Columbus, Ohio; and Irvine, Calif., which brings the total number of locations to 38 across the U.S.

October 23, 2013
Buying group Azione Unlimited has added Don Dixon to its AU Founder’s Advisory Board, which is made up of both dealer and vendor members. Dixon, the president and CEO of Definitive Electronics in Jupiter, Fla., joins fellow dealer board members David Daniels of Xssentials; Kevin Lambidonis of DES; and Will Pisula of Encore Audio/Video; and vendor board members Andy Oxenhorn of JL Audio; Eric Bodley of Perfect Path; George Walter of Digital Projection; Jason Sloan of Sonance (Dana Innovations); and Keith Haas of Integra.

TiO has announced the addition of LVZ International to the brand’s global sales force. The Vancouver Canada-based international sales representative will assist the TiO sales team with developing, implementing and managing sales and customer support programs for all international territories outside of the U.S. and Mexico.

Yamaha Corporation of America has promoted Mark Fisch to national sales manager of its AV Division. Fisch will be responsible for overseeing AV sales in the U.S. and Puerto Rico. Fisch began his career at Yamaha in March 2005 as a regional sales manager in the AV Division. Before coming to Yamaha, Fisch spent more than 12 years with Panasonic, where he most recently held the position of regional sales manager and was responsible for home and personal audio products for 13 Western states.

October 18, 2013
Clare Controls has appointed Dana Carlson as a regional sales manager for the Northeast United States. In his role, Carlson will build and support the Clare Controls dealer network throughout his territory.

Carlson has more than 25 years of demonstrated success as a sales and marketing professional. Most recently he worked closely with CEDIA channel dealers in his role as a senior account manager for Kaleidescape, where he grew their Northeast network and delivered technical product and sales training. Previously, Carlson worked with notable companies like DC Sales and Marketing, Bryston Electronics, Revel Loudspeakers and Madrigal Audio Laboratories.

“Joining the Clare Controls sales team is a great opportunity,” says Carlson. “I love the fact that Clare Controls is all about empowering the end user and improving dealer efficiency. The extraordinary UI makes the system extremely easy to sell, and the simple system installation and maintenance means greater dealer productivity and profitability.”

October 10, 2013
Clare Controls has appointed Navigant Marketing to serve as a manufacturer’s sales representative throughout the Rocky Mountain Region, including Colorado, Utah, Montana, Southern Idaho, Wyoming, New Mexico and El Paso, Texas.

"We are enthusiastic about the opportunity to work with Navigant,” said Clare CEO Brett Price. “We are impressed by the technical involvement Navigant has in their dealers’ sales processes and installations. “Moreover,” he continued, “their team has an extensive background in the design, engineering and marketing of control systems, and they place emphasis on the education and support of their dealers, helping them apply, design, and - most importantly - sell the products they represent.”

Navigant’s President Steve Forgy also commented on the new relationship. “We have patiently and cautiously waited for the right control system to represent. We based our decision to partner with Clare on platform technology, cost, ease of programming, support staff, integration capability and, of course, customer satisfaction and reliability.” Forgy added, “From its user interface to its unrivaled cloud-based ecosystem, the company is doing an outstanding job of addressing the needs of end users and integrators alike. We believe that Clare Controls will become the core technology for integrators who are ‘seeking the light.’”

October 9, 2013
The DaVinci Group has added new representatives in the United States, United Kingdom and Australia. The new reps include:

Ambassador Sales: Washington, Oregon, Alaska and Northern Idaho
Rybski Associates: Northern California and Northern Nevada
Elite3: Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas and Louisiana
F&B Sales: Massachusetts, Maine, Vermont, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Connecticut
WESCO: United Kingdom
Perfect Pitch Marketing: Australia

"Our commitment to our partners is to work with the finest representatives who are equally committed to relationships as we are,” says Jeff Francisco, VP of sales for The DaVinci Group. “To have these firms representing our products is an honor for our entire team. Our partners worldwide are extremely excited about the opportunities ahead.”

October 7, 2013
CEDIA and Volutone have partnered on two in-demand home network training courses: Intermediate Networking (EST333) and Advanced Networking (EST353), which are part of the CEDIA pathway to earning the CEDIA Residential Networking Specialist Credential.

Individuals attending the training at Volutone may take advantage of a discounted rate on this online training. These online training courses will also prepare home technology professionals who plan on attending the new

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