Dave Hadden has been named the new Sales Manager for Emotion Kayaks under Tom Straus. He was with Dagger, Mad River, and then Heritage for five years. “David is so much more than just a sales guy in the kayak industry,” says Straus. “He was a GREAT bicycle racer, and raced with some of the Tour De France guys. Plus he’s a big cross-country ski racer.” (Good luck keeping up with him Tom—PL). In other Emotion news, Jim Snyder and former Dagger/Perception designer Tony Lee have signed on as manufacturing consultants. We second that Emotion…
Confluence Watersports has promoted Patrick FitzGerald (not Gerald Fitzpatrick) to Vice President of Sales. FitzGerald has 29 years of outdoor industry experience, most recently as Director of International Sales at Confluence. FitzGerald reports to His Woolseyness, Kelley Woolsey, Exec. V.P. of Marketing and Sales. “Patrick has a done fantastic job with our international business and with his wealth of experience he brings a rare understanding of the dealer, sales rep, and company management viewpoints,” says Woolsey. FitzGerald joined Wilderness Systems as a general manager in 1993, after 16 years of outdoor retail experience with Paddling Unlimited and Ski & Tennis Station, in Winston Salem, NC.
The Trade Association of Paddlesports has announced the hiring of Michael Pardy as the association’s new executive director. Pardy is a Canuck, and the former director of SKILS. Look for great things as TAPS moves forward—just don’t expect him to play it on the bugle.
Werner Paddles has hired Danny Mongno as Northeast Sales Representative and Field Marketing. Danny has been working with Werner for two years as an in-field technical representative. “Danny did such an incredible job educating paddlers and retailers about the Werner product and paddling in general that we had to have him full-time,” stated Tracy Clapp, Sales Manager of Werner Paddles. Danny comes from Impex Kayaks where he managed the North American operations. He’ll be based out of Asheville, NC, along with Marketing Manager Christie Dobson. The company also announces Ryan Hanegan as rep for SW U.S. and Rockies.
Dunbar Hardy has resigned as editor of Kayak Session.
Vail Weatherman Ken “Hobie” Houeve (“Uh, chance of clouds, chance of sun…”) has replaced Robin Culver as Dagger’s Field Marketing Manager. Rumor has it he’s also retired from boxing matches at Gauley Fest.
Kokatat has hired Nikki Rekman and Mark Scriver as sales reps for Canada. Nikki will be covering Western Canada including Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba and Saskatchewan and Mark will be covering Eastern Canada including Ontario, Quebec and the Maritime provinces. Nikki began her career in the paddlesports industry working retail at two of Western Canada’s leading specialty retailers, Totem Outdoor Outfitters (Edmonton, AB) and Ocean River Sports (Victoria, BC) before moving to Vancouver, BC to work for North Water Paddlesports Equipment. Nikki was the Sales & Operations Manager at North Water for 8 years before becoming an independent sales rep in 2005.
Wenonah Canoe announces the hiring of Bill Kueper as its new Sales Manager. Kueper will be responsible for directing the Wenonah Canoe/Current Design Sales Representatives, and overseeing the Marketing and Customer Service Departments. Kueper comes to Wenonah with 10 years experience at 3M as a Ph. D. Chemist working in central research and product development positions. His knowledge of chemistry and materials will be a significant asset as a member of the Wenonah Canoe/Current Designs technology and product design teams.
Beaverton, Ore.’s Yakima Products Inc. has named retail manufacturing veteran Gerald Heinlen as the company’s new CEO. Heinlen’s career includes nearly 20 years in consumer products, including 10 years with Waterloo Industries in Waterloo, Iowa, where he first served as vice president of marketing and new business development prior to his appointment as president and chief operating officer in 2002. “We are impressed with Jerry’s leadership experience at both consumer and industrial goods companies,” says Chuck Griffith, Chairman of the Board for Yakima. “He brings to Yakima a proven track record and a marketing vision that, when combined with his extensive industry background, make him a natural to improve the company’s leadership position in the marketplace.”
Backbone Media has hired Ian Anderson and H. Mavis Fitzgerald as Public Relations Account Executives. “We are ecstatic to have both Mavis and Ian join our team,” states Backbone Founder Penn Newhard. “Recently, Backbone has grown in periphery active lifestyle markets and adding Mavis and Ian adds firepower to Backbone and the clients we serve.” Ian comes from Vail, Colorado, where he was the Director of Marketing and Communications for the Vail Valley Chamber and Tourism Bureau (there goes PL’s free tickets) . He is also President of First Descents, a non-profit Kayak camp for young adults with cancer. Mavis is a long-time Carbondale resident with eight-years at the town’s Montessori school,
Sierra Designs has named Mark Mathews as its new director of sales. Mathews brings over 15 years of outdoor industry sales and management experience to Sierra Designs and Ultimate Direction. Most recently, he was director of sales for Vasque Footwear and Irish Setter Footwear. In this role Mark was responsible for managing sales for two separate brands and led and directed a combined total of 60 independent sales reps.
Paramount, Calif.’s Malibu Kayaks announces the hiring of Kendal “Ken” Larson as vice president of sales. “We’re very pleased to have someone of Ken’s broad sales and international experience join the Malibu Kayak team,” says Malibu’s Sean Caples. “Ken’s passion for paddling, combined with his business acumen, makes him a perfect fit for us and I know he’ll be a great asset as we continue to grow.”
Seattle, Wash.’s Cascade Designs announces the promotion of Ken Meidell to Vice-President of Outdoor. Meidell has served as Chief Information Officer with Cascade Designs for the last five years. “The leadership and creativity Ken has applied to the role of Information Technology at Cascade has allowed all company departments and external partners to operate together seamlessly and therefore achieve higher goals,” says Cascade President Joe Mc Swiney. “The timing is perfect for Ken to extend this dynamic towards establishing new standards of excellence in product brand innovation and execution.”
As part of announcing a new, revamped sales structure, Thule announced the hiring of Schuyler Horton as Director of National Account Sales and Service. “The strategy behind our new structure is to create a system under which we can better concentrate on our dealers’ needs in specific markets and provide them with improved service,” said Tripp Wyckoff, VP Sales & Service. Horton comes from Cascade Designs where he was most recently the VP of Sales in the Outdoor Division. Larry Hewett has been promoted to Director of Specialty Account Sales. Tom Chimentihas been promoted to Director of OES Sales and Service for North America.
Companies on the Move
Sven’s on the move. Yarmouth, Maine’s Fendler Communications, a public relations and marketing communications firm headed by Sven Lee, has relocated from Portland, Maine, to a 5,000-square-foot building in Yarmouth. Reach them for schwag at 74 Bayview Street, Yarmouth, ME 04096; 207-846-0700; www.fendler.com