Tag Archives: chris powell

Geppi Family Enterprises Expands Its Leadership Team

Geppi Family Enterprises

Steve Geppi announced new appointments to Geppi Family Enterprises in a letter to employees, vendors, and key retailers. Geppi is the CEO and Chairman of Geppi Family Enterprises which is the parent company of Diamond Comic Distributors.

In the letter, Geppi laid out his visions and that’s for the Geppi family of companies to “remain leaders in the pop culture industry.” In the letter he promised “investments in our people, infrastructure, and relationships.”

On May 16th, the company announced the hiring of Stan Heidmann as president of Geppi Family Enterprises (GFE). The formation of the Office of the Chairman comprised of Stan, Joe Foss as Vice Chairman, and Geppi as Chairman and CEO were also announced.

Four months later, the Office of the Chairman at Geppi Family Enterprises is expanding with new hires.

Chuck Parker will serve as Chief of Staff for Stan Heidmann. He has served as Diamond Comics’ COO and will now act as a senior advisor and coordinate the execution of GFE’s strategic initiatives.

Larry Swanson will continue to serve as the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) in the same role where he’s been helping lead the companies.

Dan Hirsch will direct all sales and revenue efforts for GFE as the Chief Revenue Officer. Before co-founding Alliance Game Distributors, Dan owned and managed several comic retail businesses. In this new position, he will “make great use of that experience with comics, graphic novels, and collectibles in addition to his knowledge of the tabletop game industry.”

Charlie Tyson will assume the role of President at Alliance Game Distributors as Dan Hirsch transitions into his new role. As the co-founder of Alliance, Charlie is “uniquely suited” to take on this role and “will continue the tradition of excellence for which Alliance is known.”

Chris Powell has been appointed to the newly created position of Chief Relationship Officer. Powell has worked in brick-and-mortar and online comics retail before joining Diamond. He’ll be responsible for supporting the existing teams in the growing relationships with current and future publishers, vendors, and retailers. In this new role, Chris will lead the efforts to strengthen those relationships while developing new relationships throughout the marketplace. Chris will also “facilitate the cooperation between different companies, ensuring improved customer experiences for consumers, retailers, and suppliers.”

Tim Lenaghan, as Chief Procurement Officer, will be directing all purchasing functions for GFE and continuing to manage Diamond UK with the leadership team there. Tim will be responsible for sourcing, supply management, and procurement for all companies, leading existing teams, and helping them discover new products for the growing markets.

Shawn Hamrick, as Chief Logistics Officer, will be responsible for all warehouse and logistics operations for the companies. He’ll continue to “refine the procedures and infrastructure that allow for the efficient and accurate transfer of products in and out of all operations, and will support the ongoing monitoring and development of transportation planning to reliably move products all over the world.” Shawn has more than 25 years of experience managing various Diamond Comics operations, including the massive overhaul of the Olive Branch Distribution Center and implementation of new technologies that have dramatically reduced shortage and damage reports from customers.

Roger Fletcher has chosen to step away from the company after a successful 31-year career with Diamond. Roger started in 1988 as a Manager of Diamond’s Denver warehouse. He moved to Baltimore in 1990 and was promoted to VP of Sales and Marketing soon thereafter. Roger’s contributions to Diamond, and the industry, have been significant.

CBLDF Announces Changes to Board of Directors

Official Press Release

CBLDF Announces Changes to Board of Directors
Larry Marder Named President, Dale Cendali Elected As Director

The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund announces changes to its Board of Directors made at the board’s meeting at Comic-Con International.  Chris Powell stepped down as President, citing successfully meeting the goals he set upon taking the presidency in April of 2009 as the reason for the change.  Powell will remain on the Board as a director.  Larry Marder, the creator of Beanworld, and editor of CBLDF’s Liberty Annual 2010 was elected to succeed Powell as President.  Dale Cendali, a nationally recognized leader in the field of intellectual property, joins the Board as a director.

On leaving the presidency, Chris Powell says, “I always had specific goals for the Fund that I wanted to accomplish during my term as President, and thanks to the solid efforts of my fellow board members, and the CBLDF office, we’ve been able to meet those goals in just over a year.  Specifically, we relocated into a larger space that will allow us to perform our program work better, got a new website up and running, streamlined our donation processing to make our donors’ experience better, and implemented new policies that will guide the Fund as a growing organization.  I’m comfortable stepping aside now to focus more on my other pursuits, and to see Larry Marder help guide the Fund into new heights of fundraising and outreach.”

Larry Marder was elected unanimously as Powell’s successor.  Entering the position, Marder says, “I’m a life long believer in the words of the First Amendment. Freedom of speech is not a privilege –it is a constitutionally guaranteed right to every American regardless of his or her political beliefs. Attempts to censor artistic expression must always be challenged.”  Marder adds, “2011 will be the 25th anniversary of the founding of the CBLDF. Now, as then, it is our responsibility to remain vigilant and aggressively protect the First Amendment rights of the entire comic book community of creators, retailers, publishers, and readers.  I’ll continue to work hard to maintain and expand our relationships with that community, and to oversee the Fund as a transparent, responsive force for good in this industry.”

Dale Cendali joined the board at the meeting.  Cendali is a partner in the prestigious law firm of Kirkland & Ellis, where she heads the firm’s Copyright, Trademark and Internet Practice Group.   She has successfully litigated and tried numerous high profile cases and has argued before the United States Supreme Court.  Her clients include myriad prominent individuals and companies who rely on her for her expertise in copyright, trademark, patent, Internet, trade secrets, defamation, false advertising, privacy and contractual matters.   She has extensive experience representing clients in the entertainment, consumer products and technology sectors.   Managing Intellectual Property Magazine named her trial victory for J.K. Rowling in the well-known “lexicon” fair use case the “Copyright Trial of the Year.” When she is not trying cases, Dale is an avid comic book collector and fan and has been since she was five years old.  She is a big believer in comics as an art form and is deeply committed to the arts since her days as President of the Yale Dramatic Association.

Cendali says, “I am honored to be joining this distinguished group and in helping the CBLDF fulfill its mission supporting comic books and their creators.”

Under the leadership of Larry Marder, the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund’s board is: Joe Ferrara – Vice President, Milton Griepp – Treasurer, Louise Nemschoff – Secretary, Dale Cendali, Peter David, Neil Gaiman, Steve Geppi, Paul Levitz, and Chris Powell.

The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund was founded in 1986 as a 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization dedicated to the preservation of First Amendment rights for members of the comics community. They have defended dozens of Free Expression cases in courts across the United States, and led important education initiatives promoting comics literacy and free expression. For additional information, donations, and other inquiries call 800-99-CBLDF or visit them online at www.cbldf.org.