Banking & Finance

Erik P. Dickerson was named vice president of commercial lending at American Business Bank in Los Angeles. He will specialize in corporate account management and business development. Dickerson was most recently vice president and relationship manager at Mellon First Business Bank.

Joel R. Matthiesen was named vice president of trust administration for Bankers Trust Private Banking in Los Angeles. He will administer trusts and estates for significant clients in the Western region. Matthiesen was formerly an assistant vice president and trust officer at Union Bank of California.

Christopher Ochs and Steven B. Staver were promoted to managing directors for the leveraged finance and collateralized debt portfolios at SunAmerica Corporate Finance in Los Angeles. Ochs will serve as portfolio manager and Staver will serve as deputy portfolio manager of leveraged finance. Both will be responsible for the company's collateralized debt obligation portfolios and other bank debt investments. Ochs was previously an investor for the company while Staver was involved in the firm's credit selection and ongoing management of bank loans.


Mohammad Qayoumi was appointed vice president of administration and finance at Cal State Northridge. He will oversee budget and facilities planning, the controller's office, financial and accounting services, human resources, physical plant management, public safety, purchasing, and logistical services and reprographics. Qayoumi was formerly vice chancellor for administrative services at University of Missouri at Rolla.


Lawrence Aldridge was appointed vice president of global category sourcing for Walt Disney Co. in Burbank. He will be responsible for development and execution of sourcing and supply management strategies. Aldridge was previously chief procurement officer for Atlantic Richfield Co. Also, Don Goodman and Eric Haseltine were promoted to executive vice presidents at Walt Disney Imagineering. Goodman will be responsible for daily management and will oversee design and development of the company's theme parks and resorts. He was most recently senior vice president of attractions development. Haseltine will oversee all research and development activities. He was previously senior vice president and chief scientist of research and development.

Keith Gorham was promoted to senior vice president of industrial relations at Universal Studios in Universal City. He will be responsible for supervising and coordinating labor relations activities including negotiating, administering and devising policies for all collective bargaining agreements for Universal Pictures and Universal Studios. Gorham was previously vice president of industrial relations.

Len Grossi was appointed president of Sony Pictures Entertainment's Columbia TriStar Television in Culver City. He will oversee the network television division, the family entertainment division and the Game Show Network as well as managing distribution deals and overseeing the firm's investment in Telemundo. Grossi was formerly a senior executive vice president at UPN.

Michele Weiss was promoted to vice president of development at the Los Angeles office of JP Kids, an independent children's media company that produces cable and Internet programming. She will lead development of all children's animation and live-action series. Weiss was most recently director of series development at Walt Disney Television Animation.

Health Care

Tracy Fietz was promoted to medical group administrator for the Kaiser Permanente West Los Angeles Medical Center. She will oversee all employees and physicians at the center and its three satellite offices. Fietz was most recently assistant medical center administrator.


Bert Deixler, Richard Marmaro, Lary Rappaport, and Michael Firestein were named partners at Proskauer Rose in Los Angeles. Deixler represents record companies and recording artists and also handles litigation for financial securities and real estate companies. Marmoro specializes in defending companies and individuals in securities and white-collar crime investigations. Rappaport is a litigator who represents professionals, record companies and recording artists in commercial disputes, as well as representing insurance companies as plaintiffs in fraud suits. Firestein handles commercial litigation on behalf of financial institutions, securities brokerages and real estate operating companies. All four attorneys were previously with McCambridge, Deixler and Marmaro.

Henry Fink and Eric Shelby were elected partners at Allen Matkins Leck Gamble & Mallory in Los Angeles. Fink specializes in structuring, negotiating, documenting and managing real estate transactions and will be at the firm's downtown office. Shelby concentrates on general real estate matters like commercial leasing, purchase and sale transactions, development agreements, and covenants relating to ongoing uses of real property, and will be working at the West Los Angeles office. Both were previously associates with the firm.

Donald Meaders was named partner at Manatt, Phelps & Phillips in Los Angeles. He specializes in employee benefit law concerning 401(k) plans, pensions and qualified and non-qualified executive compensation plans. Meaders was previously partner in charge of the compensation and employee benefits group practice at Pillsbury Madison & Sutro in Los Angeles.

Kurt C. Peterson was named firm-wide managing partner at Crosby, Heafey, Roach & May in Los Angeles. He will oversee operations at all four of the firm's offices. Peterson was most recently managing partner at the firm's Century City office.

Edward Sonnenschein Jr. was named co-chair of the venture and technology practice group at Latham & Watkins in Los Angeles. He will oversee the group's provision of legal counsel to emerging-growth companies on financing, mergers and acquisitions, licensing agreements, strategic partnering and other technology transfer transactions. Sonnenschein was formerly chairman of the firm's corporate department. Also, Bruce D. Kuyper was named partner in the intellectual property and technology litigation group. He will continue to practice patent litigation focusing on the semiconductor, electronics and computer software industries, as well as other intellectual property litigation. Kuyper was formerly a partner in the intellectual property work group at Irell & Manella in Los Angeles.


Jim Burke was named president of sales for Fox Television Stations and Fox-owned regional sports networks. Burke will oversee all local advertising sales and will lead efforts to integrate local and regional sales and marketing efforts and Fox Internet marketing across broadcast and regional cable properties. Burke was most recently executive vice president of sales and marketing for Fox Television Stations. Also, Ed Goren was promoted to president of Fox Sports. He will oversee all aspects of the company's television investments and partnerships. Goren was previously executive producer. Both presidents will be based in Los Angeles.

New Media

Gary H. Hickox was named chief executive officer of, a Los Angeles-based Web site selling personalized greeting cards. He will be responsible for executing the company's strategic business plan, managing day-to-day operations and overseeing strategic partnerships. Hickox was previously president and chief operating officer at in Los Angeles.

Jill Higson was promoted to vice president of ad sales at E! Online in Los Angeles. She will be responsible for advertising sales and related promotions, as well as selling integrated programs with the E! television network. Higson was previously national sales director.

Roland Poindexter was named vice president of development at, an entertainment site for teen and college-age audiences based in Marina del Rey. He will oversee creative development activities. Poindexter was formerly vice president and head of programming at Fox Kids Network. Also, Adam Langsbard was appointed vice president of e-commerce. He will be responsible for developing and monitoring e-commerce strategies as well as creating partnership deals and promotional tie-ins for the site's online store. Langsbard was most recently director of marketing at Sony Pictures Consumer Products.


Victor Hwang was appointed chief operating officer at LARTA (Los Angeles Regional Technology Alliance), a nonprofit networking hub for technology companies based in Los Angeles. He will be responsible for day-to-day operations. Hwang was most recently a lawyer specializing in corporate law with Irell & Manella in Los Angeles.

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