*NEWSMAKERS Accounting

Grant Thornton LLP in Woodland Hills hired Sandy Kadekian as a partner in the tax practice. Kadekian was previously tax director at KPMG LLP in Woodland Hills.

AdStar Inc., a Marina del Rey-based e-commerce company, hired James Linesch as chief financial officer. Linesch was previously a managing director at Met Advisors in Southern California.

Ignited Minds, an advertising agency based in Marina Del Rey, promoted Dave Martin to associate media director and hired Donnie Williams as interactive associate media director. Martin was previously media supervisor and Williams was interactive media supervisor at Carat Fusion in Los Angeles.

KAA Design Group Inc. in Los Angeles promoted Erik Evens and Michael Eserts to principal, Alex Anamos to senior associate and Barbara Alfors and Luis Murillo to associate. Evens and Eserts were previously associates, Anamos will retain his position as a studio director and project manager, and Alfors and Murillo retain their positions as job captains.

Wirt Design Group in Los Angeles hired Isabela Villacorta as a designer. Villacorta was previously an intermediate designer at Santa Monica-based WWCOT.

Banking & Finance
ARC Investment Partners LLC in Beverly Hills hired Steve Magami as managing director. Magami was previously a principal at Lovell Minnick Partners in Los Angeles.

ResMAE, a wholesale specialty residential mortgage lender based in Brea, hired Jeffrey Thompson as regional vice president for the northeast territory. Thompson was previously regional manager at Orange-based Acoustic Home Loans.

City National Bank in Los Angeles hired Brian Fitzmaurice as chief credit officer and executive vice president. Fitzmaurice was previously senior risk manager of middle market lending for commercial business at Citibank in Southern California.

Parson Consulting hired Edward Wenrick as managing director of its San Francisco and Los Angeles offices. Wenrick was previously managing director and mid-market leader at BearingPoint in Northern California.

Vaco, a Nashville, Tenn.-based consulting and recruitment firm, hired Frances Moreno, Anita Shelley and Stephanie Keairns as partners to head the company's new offices in West Los Angeles and Westlake Village. Moreno, Shelly and Keairns were previously at Robert Half International in Los Angeles.

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger appointed Stephen P. Pfahler and Victor L. Wright to judgeships in the Los Angeles County superior court, Lindy DeKoven to the commission on the status of women, Randal Hernandez to the Board of Governors for California Community Colleges and Carol Biondi to the corrections standards authority. Pfahler is a practicing partner at the law firm of Bannan Green Frank & Terzian in Los Angeles; Wright is a principal deputy county counsel in the Los Angeles County Counsel's office; DeKoven is president of DeKoven Entertainment; Hernandez is the senior government relations executive for California at Bank of America; and Biondi is on the Los Angeles County commission for children and families.

Health Care
Molina Healthcare Inc., a Long Beach-based health insurance company, hired Michael M. Siegel as vice president and medical director of utilization management and quality improvement. Siegel was previously implementation officer and chief medical officer of the western region at Woodland Hills-based HealthNet Inc.

Little Company of Mary Hospital in Torrance hired Michael Hunn as administrator. Hunn was previously president and chief executive at Lakewood Regional Medical Center in Lakewood.

City of Hope, a national cancer center located in Duarte, hired Virginia A. Opipare as executive vice president and chief operating officer. Opipare was previously executive vice president and chief operating officer at Roswell Park Cancer Institute in Buffalo, N.Y.

Hotel Bel-Air hired Steve Rice as executive director of catering and Thomas Humphrey as director of restaurant operations. Rice was previously director of catering at the Pierre in New York and Humphrey was director of restaurants at the Four Seasons Hotel in Atlanta.

L.A. Opera renewed Placido Domingo as general director, moved Elizabeth Kennedy to a liaison position with the Music Center, promoted Edgar Baitzel to chief operating officer, Marilyn Shapiro to executive vice president and Mitchell Heskel to director of administration and hired James Conlon as music director. Kennedy was previously administrative director, Baitzel was artistic director, Shapiro was director of institutional resources, Heskel was director of operations and retains the position chief financial officer, and Conlon was principal conductor at the Paris National Opera and music director of the Ravinia Festival in Chicago.

Real Estate
Amcal Multi-Housing, an Agoura Hills-based developer and builder of affordable housing in California, promoted Sean Hyatt to vice president of development, Perry Wright to vice president of construction, Luxmi Vaz to vice president of accounting and administration and Jay Ross to senior development associate. The company also hired Sid Paul as director of for-sale housing, Maurice Ramirez as director of development and finance, and Mark Ruff as director of acquisitions Los Angeles. Hyatt was previously director of development, Wright was director of construction, Vaz was controller, Ross was development associate. Paul was previously project director of the Ambassador campus development in Pasadena, Ramirez was director of acquisitions and development at the Los Angeles Housing Partnership, and Ruff was a broker associate at Re/Max Tri-City in Glendale.

The West Coast division of Forest City, a Los Angeles-based company mixed-use development company, promoted Andres Friedman to vice president, Forest City commercial development, Western division. Friedman was previously project developer.

Guitar Center Inc., a Westlake Village-based retailer of guitars, amplifiers and other musical instruments, promoted Erick Mason to chief financial officer. Mason was previously chief administrative officer and will retain his position as executive vice president.

Mattel Inc. in El Segundo elected Dominic Ng to the company's board. Ng is chairman, president and chief executive of East West Bancorp Inc. in Los Angeles.

Dogeared Jewels and Gifts, a fashion brand that creates handcrafted designs based in Venice, hired Robin Kramer as director of sales. Kramer was previously sales and marketing manager at Molly West Handbound Books in San Francisco.

Kastle Systems, a Los Angeles-based building and office security systems provider, promoted Jess Johannsen and John Waters to western region business development managers. Johannsen and Waters were previously systems sales consultants.

The Ashy Agency, a Los Angeles-based representative firm for clients in broadcast and new media design, animation, live action and effects studios, hired Meredith Crandall as vice president. Crandall was previously an associate producer at Troika Design Group.

Daleco Resources Corp., an international resources company with oil, natural gas, minerals and environmental remediation technologies based in Los Angeles, hired David L. Matz as vice president, operations manager, oil and gas. Matz was previously a project manager at Dynatech in West Virginia.

InQ, an Agoura Hills-based online marketing company, hired Rachelle Gable as vice president of sales. Gable was previously senior vice president of sales at CNG Inc. in Los Angeles.

Siderean Software, a digital content company based in El Segundo, hired Brian Anderson as vice president of marketing and Jack Berkowitz as vice president of engineering. Anderson was previously chief marketing officer at Avamar Technologies Inc. and Berkowitz was vice president of engineering and vice president of strategic alliances at Cerebra.

TelePacific Communications, a Los Angeles-based telecommunications and network company, promoted Robert Madore to senior vice president for network engineering and operations and Jim Buntz to director of major accounts. Madore was previously general manager of network engineering and operations, and Buntz was senior manager of agent channel operations.

PortBlue, a Web-based expertise company, hired Beverly A. Barrett as manager, health-care solutions. Barrett was previously director of sales at Tustin-based Department B.

Northrop Grumman, a global defense company based in Los Angeles, promoted Carolyn Pittman to vice president, internal audit. Pittman was previously vice president, finance and controller in the integrated systems sector.

CyberCity 3D in El Segundo hired Kris D. Kimble as director of sales and marketing of 3-D modeling, and promoted Jacqui Swartz to account manager for Southern California and Peter Ding to vertical market manager for military, intelligence and security. Kimble was previously director, national accounts at Sun Energy Solutions in Santa Ana; Swartz was previously GIS/inside sales representative; and Ding was 3D visualization product developer.

Euromoney's "Managing Intellectual Property" Magazine ranked Knobbe Martens Olson & Bear, a firm with offices in Los Angeles, as the top IP law firm with headquarters in the Western United States, by a compilation of worldwide nomination submissions.

Burditch Marketing Communications in Los Angeles received the Award of Excellence in the 2006 North American Travel Journalist Association Awards Competition in the Business/Publication categories. It was honored for the press release "Women & Wine Creates New Niche in Luxury Travel as the First Company Dedicated to Wine Themed Itineraries for Women."

Entretec, a strategic partnering and entrepreneurial business support association for Los Angeles, announced the finalists for its third annual Entrepreneurship Award 2006 in partnership with PriceWaterhouseCoopers. Accruent Inc., Arecont Visions LLC, Boingo Wireless, Blue Lava Group Inc., NextAce Corporation and SyncVoice Communications LLC are finalists for entrepreneurial vigor and business achievements.

Wade Killefer, founding partner of Killefer Flammang Architects, was elected a Fellow of the American Institute of Architects for his pioneering in the adaptive reuse of historic buildings downtown and the pro-bono survey his firm conducted of some 200 buildings in the historic core that revealed some were economically viable for residential conversion.

The 20th Annual National Association of Women Business Owners-Los Angeles Leadership and Legacy Awards Luncheon, is honoring Debbie Allen, founder and artistic director of the Debbie Allen Dance Academy with the Trailblazer Award; Monica Lozano, publisher and chief executive of La Opinion with the Leadership Award; Patty DeDominic, chief executive of The PDQ Careers Group with the Legacy Award; Patti Chang, president and chief executive of The Women's Foundation of California with the advocate organization award; Betsy Berkhemer-Credaire, president of Berkhemer Clayton Inc. with the lifetime achievement award; Anna Ouroumian, president and chief executive of the Academy of Business Leadership with the inspiration award; and JoAnn Bourne, executive vice president of Union Bank of California will accept the corporate partner of the year award on the company's behalf. NAWBO-LA will induct into the Hall of Fame Judy Levy and Ellen Pazanti, co-owners of Levy Pazanti & Associates; Nien-Ling Wacker, president of Laserfiche Document Management; and Gwen Vuchsas, owner and chief operating officer of Seco Investigative & Security Services.

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