Oct 11, 2007

Panel Speaker Bios - group Y October event

We have four panelists joining us this coming Wednesday. They are:

Bruce McDermott - Group Director Brand Integration, Saatchi & Saatchi
Graham Stapelberg - VP Marketing, Billabong
Chris Conrad - VP Action Sports, IMG
Mel Harris - VP Motorcycle/Marine Division, Suzuki

The discussion will be moderated by Rob Campbell - Publisher of TransWorld Business

Please check out their bios below. See you on Wednesday!

Graham Stapelberg
Vice President of Marketing
Billabong USA

Graham Stapelberg started his career at Billabong as the Vice President of Marketing for USA while overseeing Sports Marketing, Brand Management, and Retail Marketing. Currently, he is head of marketing for all of North America and also part of an international marketing committee overseeing the international marketing. Billabong does business in over 65 countries and attracts approximately 48% of its sales from North America. In 2007 Billabong increased its revenue 19.7% to $1.23 billion.

Stapelberg has been involved in professional surfing for 16 years as an International Judge, Chief Financial Officer, and Executive Director/CEO for the Association of Surfing Professionals. He joined Billabong in 1998 and has been in the surf apparel business for the last 9 years while currently serving on the Board of Directors of the Association of Surfing Professionals. Stapelberg received an Honors Degree in Commerce from the University of South Africa and a Bachelor of Commerce from the University of Natal-Durban. He went on to pass the Board Exam as a Certified Public Accountant in South Africa.

Mel Harris
Vice President, Motorcycle/Marine Division
American Suzuki Motor Corporation

Mel Harris has been employed by American Suzuki for 26 years in positions including National Sales Manager, Marketing Director/National Sales Manager, and Vice President/Marketing Director/National Sales Manager.

As Vice President of Motorcycles, the major scope is marketing of Suzuki Motorcycles and ATVs, utilizing 1185 dealers in 33 sales districts and a sales force of 41 Regional and Sales Managers. Mel is responsible for all Sales, Marketing, and Advertising strategies to retail Suzuki Product. Additionally, he is responsible for racing activities of the five major disciplines: Motocross, Road Racing, Off-Road Racing, Enduro, and ATV

Mel holds degrees from Thompson Business School and Penn State University, and is on the Board of Directors of the Motorcycle Industry Council, and is a Trustee for the American Motorcyclist Association.

American Suzuki distributes Motorcycles, All Terrain Vehicles (ATVs), Outboard Motors and Automobiles through a dealer network of approximately 2525 dealers nationwide.

Bruce McDermott
Group Director - Brand Integration
Saatchi & Saatchi

Bruce is a three-year Saatchi & Saatchi LA veteran, heading up the sponsorships, events, promotions and digital media disciplines supporting clients Toyota and EMI.

Prior to Saatchi, he did a 20-year run with Wunderman (part of Young & Rubicam Brands) as a SVP Practice Leader for promotions, retail marketing, events and sponsorships supporting clients, Lincoln Mercury, El Pollo Loco, Taco Bell and Chevron.

Since its founding in 1975, the West Coast office of Saatchi & Saatchi has been creating world-famous creative ideas on behalf of its clients. In 2006, the agency’s innovation played a vital role in Toyota’s selection as Marketer of the Year by Advertising Age and BrandWeek and as Media Client of the Year by MediaPost magazine. Saatchi & Saatchi LA is the agency of record for Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., and it also serves Toyota Dealer Associations and Procter & Gamble. The LA office is the third largest in the global network of ideas company Saatchi & Saatchi, part of Publicis Groupe.

Chris Conrad
Vice President
IMG Action Sports

A graduate of UCSB with a degree in communications, Conrad began at Fleishman Hillard public relations in Los Angeles. Conrad then joined CE Sports with tasks that included day-to-day management of the Bud One Airship, as well as public relations and event production duties for the American Pro Snowboard Tour and the Bud Light Pro Beach Volleyball Tour. Additionally, he assisted with the development of Destination Extreme for ESPN - the first touring property related to the X Games.

Conrad and partner James Leitz went on to form EventSource - an event consulting and production company. Clients included Anheuser-Busch, USA Rugby, IMG, Vans and Ocean Pacific. In 1998 IMG purchased Event Source - which has evolved into IMG's Action Sports division.

Currently, IMG Action Sports assists clients with event production including the Vans Downtown Showdown, Boost Mobile pro of Surf and the Pro Tec Pool Party; it owns and produces events like the US Open of Surfing and Escape from Alcatraz Triathlon; it consults for clients including Target and Anheuser-Busch; and it manages athletes including Shaun White and Kalohe Andino.

Rob Campbell
TransWorld Business

Rob Campbell is the publisher of Transworld Business, the leading trade publication of the action sports industry.

Most recently, Rob served as Editorial Director for Future US, Inc. where he launched four multimedia action sports titles and oversaw all print, online, and video assets. Prior to working at Future, Rob was Creative Director for Kynetik Media and provided commercial content and consultation for clients like Honda, Slim Jim, Tony Hawk Inc., Gravity Games, Quiksilver, and more. His freelance editorial work has been featured in ESPN The Magazine, EXPN, Snowboarder, and surfingthemag.com. Rob began his career in action sports at Snowboarder Magazine, where he served as editor for almost three years, and created departments and special events that are still among the mag's most popular today.

Rob lives in Cardiff, California, with his wife Tina Dixon, who is a television reporter for ESPN and NBC, specializing in action sports events like the X Games and Olympic snowboarding.


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