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Sunday, Dec 3, 2023



Advertising/Public Relations

Joel Hochberg will join the Los Angeles-based firm of Asher/Gould Advertising as chief operating officer. Hochberg was most recently executive vice president of Foote Cone & Belding in Los Angeles. He replaces Bruce Silverman, who resigned to pursue other interests last month.

Ketchum Directory Advertising announced the appointment of Susan Hronec Harris as vice president of human resources. Harris previously worked for BSCA, a Chicago-based software company. She will be based in Los Angeles.


Frank A. Taormina has been named executive vice president for Hughes Communications Inc. He was previously president and chief operating officer for Hughes Space and Communications International Inc. He will now be in charge of developing Hughes satellite programs.


Herschel Ritzman has been named senior vice president and manager of City National Bank’s residential mortgage center. Ritzman is responsible for City National’s team of loan representatives and oversees all aspects of the Beverly Hills-based bank’s mortgage products. Prior to joining City National, Ritzman was director of national underwriting for Home Savings of America.

Houlihan Lokey Howard & Lukin, a Los Angeles-based investment banking firm, announced several promotions. Evan S. Moore has been promoted to senior vice president; David A. Davis, Alan D. Fragen and Todd S. Strassman were also named vice presidents.

Allen H. Court joins Preferred Bank as a first vice president. Court, who will be based in Century City, previously held senior executive positions with City National and Imperial bank. He will be in charge of the company’s commercial banking group.


Nan Marchand has been promoted to vice president of sales for Universal Studios Hollywood and Universal City Walk. She was previously director of travel industry sales. Marchand will be responsible for the creation of sales and marketing campaigns to the tourism, corporate, convention and special interest markets.

Lynn Kesterson-Townes has been appointed to the newly created position of vice president of strategic planning for Universal Studios Recreation Group. Kesterson-Townes was previously director of corporate strategic planning and development for Walt Disney Co. In her new position, she will be responsible for development of the themed entertainment divisions for Universal Studios Hollywood and Florida, as well as Universal CityWalk.

E. Barry Haldeman has been appointed executive vice president of business and legal affairs for Paramount Pictures. Haldeman will supervise the feature film business affairs and legal affairs department for Paramount’s motion picture group. He previously was an attorney for Greenberg, Glusker, Fields, Claman and Machtinger.

Petersen Publishing Co. announced that James R. Guthrie joins the Los Angeles-based company as executive vice president for marketing and sales. Guthrie was previously executive vice president of marketing development of the Magazine Publishers of America. He will now be senior advertising sales executive for the company’s overall marketing direction, promotional activities, research and the Petersen advertising sales network.

Health Care

Mary Gilligan has been appointed vice president of commercial operations for Woodland Hills-based Health Net. Gilligan previously served as a senior vice president for Blue Cross Blue Shield in Washington, D.C. She was also assistant vice president of operations for Lifeguard Inc. of Milpitas.

Charles Nagurka was named medical director of CareAmerica of Woodland Hills. Nagurka will now be responsible for managing the company’s medical management, customer service and quality programs. He previously worked in private practice.

High Technology

America Online Inc. announced that George Vradenburg has been named senior vice president and general counsel. Vradenburg was formerly a senior partner at Latham & Watkins in Los Angeles. He will be based at AOL’s corporate headquarters in Dulles, VA.

International Technology Corp. announced the appointment of five vice presidents to the Torrance-based environmental management firm. W. Wade Ballard has been appointed vice president for the Department of Energy programs; Stuard L. Clark will be vice president of business development; Ronald D. Conway will be vice president of administration of international technology; Ann P. Harris will be vice president of human resources; and David C. McMurty will be vice president of real estate restoration.

Spatializer Audio Laboratories Inc. announced the promotion of Angela J. Johnson to vice president of corporate communications and investor relations. Johnson previously served as Spatializer’s director of corporate communications. The Woodland Hills-based company develops and licenses advanced audio signal processing and data storage technology.

Real Estate

Scott W. Wyatt has been named chief executive officer of NBBJ Sports west coast operations. Also, the Los Angeles-based firm appointed James O. Jonassen as the firm’s managing partner in charge of national and international accounts. NBBJ specializes in architecture for sports and entertainment facilities.

Dan Penn has been elected president and chief executive officer of Los Angeles-based Peck/Jones Construction. He joined Peck/Jones in 1991 as a senior vice president and chief financial officer. He also held the position of executive vice president and director.

Grubb & Ellis has appointed two new senior vice presidents in its Los Angeles office. G. William Vaughan will become senior vice president of the company’s real estate services division. He previously was with Alison Co. and CB Commercial. William Atha II also takes on the same title. He previously worked for AVCO Commercial Real Estate Services Inc., of which he was a founding partner.

Bill DeEiel has joined Feola Carli & Archuleta Architects of Glendale as managing director of design and planning. DeEiel has played a key design role for a number of developments world-wide, including The Mall of America in Bloomington, Minn., and Horton Plaza in San Diego. He will manage the company’s design staff.


Mac Frugal’s Bargains/Close-outs Inc. announced that David H. Batchelder as chairman of its board. Batchelder replaces Peter Willmott, who resigned to spend full-time as chief executive of Zenith Electronics. Batchelder is currently CEO of Batchelder & Partners Inc. Mac Frugal’s, based in Dominguez Hills, operates 320 retail stores in 18 states.


Harold D. Wankel has joined Culver City-based Protection One as vice president of patrol services. Wankel most recently was chief of operations for the U.S. Justice Department’s Drug Enforcement Administration. In his new job, Wankel will oversee the company’s expanding patrol and armed response services in both Los Angeles and Las Vegas.

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