This week’s executive shifts include podcast network Wondery welcoming a senior VP of marketing, Price Chopper Enterprises appointing a new CMO, Netflix’s CMO resigning, Kraken hiring a CMO from Sony, WGBH naming their new marketing leader, Church’s Chicken appointing a new global chief marketing officer, Smoothie King hiring a CMO, Recording Academy appointing new chief digital officer, Complexity Gaming hiring a chief marketing officer, Roar picking up a CMO, NorCal Cannabis appointing a former Twitter VP as CMO, UPS appointing a VP of diversity marketing, Genius picking up a marketing veteran from Vox Media and a chief marketing officer for KASA Hotels.
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Wondery Welcomes A Senior Vice President Of Marketing
Podcast producer Wondery appointed a media veteran Rena Unger as the network’s senior vice president of marketing.
Unger, a previous industry lead for IAB and head of marketing for SiriusXM, will be responsible for overseeing all Wondery’s marketing efforts and listenership development.
“Wondery’s storytelling enrolls listeners in unparalleled ways. By engaging all senses through thoughtful cinematic and drama building sonic signatures, Wondery is hitting the content mark audiences are craving the most. This is a marketer’s dream. I am beyond excited to have the opportunity to be instrumental in telling Wondery’s unique story to the industry and listeners at large,” she shared in a press release.
Price Chopper Enterprises Appoints New Chief Marketing Officer
Price Chopper Enterprises has has promoted Casie Broker to chief marketing officer.
Broker has been with the company for eight years, most recently serving as a VP of marketing. In this role, she successfully rolled out grocery delivery for all stores, as well as brokered a sponsorship with the Kansas City Royals. Previously, she was the director of marketing for Cosentino’s Food Stores and spent five years in marketing with Associated Wholesale Grocers.
“Casie has been an extremely valuable part of our team for many years,” said Peter J. Ciacco, Price Chopper Enterprises’ CEO. “We’re pleased to have her take another step forward in her career within Price Chopper.”
Netflix’s CMO Kelly Bennett Resigns
Netflix CMO of almost seven years, Kelly Bennett, is leaving the company, Variety reported in an interview with the marketer on Thursday. Bennett will remain with the company for an interim transition period and is committed to staying at Netflix through the end of the year if necessary, and Netflix confirmed that the company is searching for a new chief marketing officer.
Bennett told Variety that this decision was his personal choice and that he wasn’t asked to resign by Netflix CEO Reed Hastings.
“Given the success, we’re at today — the way we’re performing as a team — it’s the right legacy for me to leave while we’re at our very best,” he said. Bennett’s plans for after the leave are to be semi-retired. “I likely will never work full-time again. That’s not something I’m particularly interested in,” he told Variety.
He also said that he’s planning to pursue roles in the non-profit sector or teach, and possibly serve on a few boards of other companies.
Kraken Crypto Exchange Hires Former Sony Studio CMO
Kraken hired Matt Mason to be the company’s first chief marketing officer. He was previously the studio head for Sony-Funded 1-800-N0TH1NG and the chief content officer for BitTorrent.
In an interview with CoinDesk, Mason spoke about his decision to join Kraken, “I’ve been interested and involved in distributed technology for much of my career, and there isn’t a better brand in the crypto space than Kraken. I’m incredibly grateful I get to work with this amazing group of people.”
WGBH Names Tina Cassidy Chief Marketing Officer
WGBH President Jonathan Abbott announced the appointment of Tina Cassidy as the company’s new CMO.
Cassidy, previously public relations and strategic marketing executive, will lead WGBH’s marketing, communications and public relations efforts. She will also be responsible for local and national marketing, institutional branding, events strategy, creative and design services, station relations, as well as audience and media research.
“I am a native New Englander who grew up with WGBH. Its educational programming helped shape who I am and instilled a love for this brand, which I am so honored to now be a part of,” Cassidy said in a statement, “The way we tell stories and connect with audiences is evolving rapidly with new technology, shifting demographics and consumer preferences, all of which creates new opportunities for extending the reach of this organization at a time when trusted content has never been more important.”
Church’s Chicken Hires Former Burger King Exec As CMO
Atlanta-based Church’s Chicken welcomed a new global chief marketing officer, Brian Gies, on Tuesday. Gies’ background includes overseeing marketing efforts at TGI Fridays and Burger King and he will officially start his new role as a CMO on March 18th and focus mainly on leading the improvement of market share.
According to Atlanta Business Chronicle, the CEO of Church’s, Joe Christina, said in an announcement, “Brian is joining the team at a very exciting time. He has proven successful in building winning teams, delivering results and working with franchisees to grow their business.”
Rebecca Miller Joins Smoothie King As CMO
Smoothie King Franchises Inc. announced that Rebecca Miller will join the brand as a chief marketing officer. Miller will succeed Jennifer Herskind, the former CMO, who left the company in February. The industry veteran, Miller will lead Smoothie King’s marketing strategy in addition to its “Clean Blends” initiative.
Miller previously served as senior vice president of marketing for Dallas-based On The Border Mexican Grill & Cantina and spent almost 10 years in various brand marketing and product innovation roles, which includes Plano, Texas-based Pizza Hut Inc., a division of Yum! Brands Inc.
Recording Academy Appoints Lisa Farris Chief Digital Officer
The Recording Academy announced on Wednesday its appointment of Lisa Farris to the role of the company’s chief digital officer. Farris will lead a digital media team, oversee content strategy, data analytics, audience growth and product strategy. Her background includes serving as chief digital and brand officer for analytics firm MetricVision and chief marketing officer for Move Inc.
Academy president/CEO Neil Portnow, to whom Farris will be reporting, said in statement for Billboard, “[Farris] is a leading digital innovator who recognizes the Recording Academy has incredible opportunities to inform and inspire music fans through new products and platforms, and we’re very fortunate to have someone with her depth of experience and far-sighted perspectives on the industry join our team.”
Complexity Gaming Hires Chief Marketing Officer
Complexity Gaming, an esports team owned by the Dallas Cowboy’s owner Jerry Jones, has appointed Cameron Kelly as the company’s chief marketing officer. Kelly was previously the director of strategy at United Entertainment Group. According to a statement, at UEG “he conceptualized and oversaw integrated marketing campaigns for major corporations, such as Toyota, Frito-Lay, S.C. Johnson, Allstate, JCPenney, and more.”
Kelly’s “role [will include] all marketing initiatives for the organization, from creating and distributing original content to increase brand awareness, all the while navigating the ever-changing, complex esports landscape.”
Roar Picks Up Chief Marketer
Roar Beverage Company has hired Eric Berniker as the company’s chief marketing officer. Berniker was previously CMO of CORE Nutrition and prior to that he was the VP marketing for Pirate’s Booty.
“I think a big part of the job will be to continue to fan the fire,” Berniker told BevNet. “The brand last year grew 500 percent and that was with a really lean team doing some amazing things. So it’s about how do we take those things and scale them and continue to raise awareness for the brand in different ways.”
Twitter Veteran Leaves For Cannabis Company
NorCal Cannabis Co, a cannabis consumer goods company, has appointed Joel Lunenfeld as the company’s chief marketing officer. Lunenfeld left Twitter in 2017 after six years as VP, global brand strategy.
Lunenfeld spoke to Benzinga about his new appointment: “When I started at Twitter in 2011, social media was just starting to become a mainstream mode of communication in society. Being able to tell our story and educate people about how and why to use Twitter was our top job. At NorCal, educating people about cannabis and building consumer trust is the most important pillar of our growth as well. It will be our number one job moving forward.”
UPS Creates VP Marketing, Diverse Segments Position
UPS has appointed Kathleen Marran to the newly created position of vice president of marketing, diverse segments. Marran is a longtime marketer at UPS and her current title is VP of US marketing.
UPS chief marketing officer Keving Warren said of the appointment: “These initiatives will expand our capabilities within the small and medium-sized business space and leverage our global logistics expertise to help accelerate the growth of minority- and women-owned companies. Adding additional professional resources and new product and support programs is part of our focus on offering solutions that support small businesses in their goals.”
Genius Hires Ex-Vox Media For VP
Genius, the NYC-based digital music media company, has hired Keisha Wright to be the company’s VP, integrated marketing. Wright comes to the company from Vox Media, where she was SB Nation’s director of network development. Prior to that she also worked for a number of years at Time Inc, InStyle, Macy’s and the NBA.
Genius also announced the appointment of Laura Ostler Kinniburgh as head of music licensing and Devan Joseph as head of video.
KASA Hotels Announces CMO
KASA Hotel Collection has appointed Pablo Gonzalez as the company’s chief marketing officer. Gonzelez previously worked in marketing at regional Hyatt hotels in Mexico City and Playa del Carmen.
According to a press release, Gonzelez will be “responsible for the positioning of the KASA Hotel Collection and for growth through traditional and digital marketing and management. He will manage a staff of 12 people, with responsibilities ranging from content creation to reservations.”
Editor’s Note: Our weekly careers post is updated daily. This installment is updated until Friday, March 8. Have a new hire tip? We’re looking for senior executive role changes in marketing and media. Let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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