DI People: Elevate Credit, Devenney Group, Kimberly-Clark Make Leadership Moves

In this weekly roundup of executive and leadership moves involving companies in North Texas, you’ll also find news from Jones|Carter, SWK Holdings, Wingstop, the Michaels Companies, and more.

Vice President

Across North Texas, companies are promoting and hiring people to take on leadership positions within their organizations. Dallas Innovates covers prominent personnel moves in Dallas-Fort Worth businesses and nonprofits—from the newest startups to well-established companies. Here are people moves tied to innovation and technology in the region.

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Elevate Credit appoints Harvison as president and CEO

Jason Harvison

Jason Harvison has been appointed president and chief executive officer of Elevate Credit
Inc., a Fort Worth-based tech-enabled provider of innovative online credit solutions for non-prime consumers.

Harvison is a 16-year veteran of the company and has served as interim CEO since July. He also has been appointed to the Elevate Board of Directors.

Harvison joined Elevate’s predecessor company in 2003, and in 2014, he was named Elevate’s chief product officer and chief operating officer. Harrison has previously served on Elevate’s board of directors.

Brennan joins Devenney Group as executive director

Leslie Brennan

Leslie Brennan, associate AIA, has joined Dallas-based Devenney Group, a nationally recognized healthcare design firm, as executive director.

Brennan is involved with several industry organizations including the Association of Medical Facilities Professionals, American College of Healthcare Executives, CREW Dallas, bionorthTX, and is on the board of Women in Healthcare-Texas.

Kimberly-Clark elects Hsu to chairman of the board

Michael Hsu

Irving-based Kimberly-Clark Corp. announced the election of chief executive officer Michael D. Hsu to the additional role of chairman of the company’s Board of Directors, effective Jan. 1.

Hsu succeeds Thomas Falk, who plans to retire from the company and its board at year’s end after serving as chairman for the past 16 years.

Kimberly-Clark’s portfolio of brands includes Huggies, Kleenex, Scott, Kotex, Cottonelle, Poise, Depend, Andrex, Pull-Ups, GoodNites, Intimus, Neve, Plenitud, Viva, and WypAll.

Bayan joins Jones|Carter as vice president

Vice President

Mohammad Bayan

Mohammad Bayan, PE, has joined Plano-based Jones|Carter as vice president of Water and Wastewater.

Bayan brings more than 20 years of experience managing relevant projects to his new position, in addition to managing interdisciplinary engineering and construction projects costing in the tens of millions.

Bayan has led numerous evaluation and monitoring studies related to water quality in distribution systems. As a technical lead and water process engineer, he has also been involved in many projects relating to piloting, design and contracting, and construction.

CEO Black tapped as chairman of SWK Holdings Corp.

Winston Black

Chief Executive Officer Winston Black has been named chairman of the board of Dallas-based SWK Holdings Corp., the company announced.

Prior chairman Mike Weinberg plans to stay on as a member of the board.

SWK creates financing structures backing growth opportunities for small life science companies. Since launching in 2012, SWK has executed its business model with 36 partners, deployed $528 million of capital, and created a portfolio of royalties and structured credit backed by royalties that totals roughly $170 million across 23 partners.

Wingstop promotes two executives

vice president

Christina Clarke

Dallas-based Wingstop Inc. announced that it has appointed Christina Clarke as chief marketing officer and Donnie Upshaw as senior vice president of people.

Clarke had been interim chief marketing officer and Upshaw previously was vice president of human resources.

Since joining Wingstop in 2018, Clarke has made significant contributions to Wingstop’s national advertising strategy, the company said. In February, she led the brand’s new campaign, Where Flavor Gets Its Wings. 

Upshaw also joined Wingstop in 2018. Since, she has helped refine the talent management framework and helped build a culture and organization positioned for the next phase of growth.

Michaels announces three changes to its executive team

vice president

Scott Lindblom

Vice President

Vidya Jwala

The Michaels Companies Inc. recently announced changes in its executive leadership team. 

Michaels, the largest arts and crafts retail chain in North America, said that Vidya Jwala has been appointed to the newly created role of chief customer officer, Scott Lindblom has been promoted to executive vice president–chief information officer, and Holly Shaskey-Platek has been promoted to executive vice president–chief human resources officer.

Michaels said Jwala will be responsible for creating an omnichannel, customer-centric business strategy across all digital, physical, and social “touchpoints” within the brand.

Lindblom will cover all of the company’s IT areas, including the development and implementation of technologies to enhance Michaels’ ability to serve business partners and customers. He’ll also oversee the Michaels’ IT initiatives roadmap. 

Shaskey-Platek will be tasked with human resources operations, which includes leadership and organizational development, culture and employee engagement, employee relations, talent management, benefits, and compensation. 

IMA Inc. names Pankotai to vice president role in Dallas

Vice President

Donna Pankotai

Donna Pankotai will assume the new role of team senior vice president and director of client services for IMA Inc. in its Dallas office, where she will manage growth for its property and casualty division.

IMA is a national insurance broker specializing in property and casualty insurance, employee benefits, and surety bonds.

In her new role, Pankotai will focus on mid-to-large complex accounts, the Wichita, Kansas-based company said. She has more than three decades of experience in strategy development, marketing, and global team leadership for property and casualty accounts.

Presley joins G&W as vice president at its new Dallas office

Vice President

Judd Presley

G&W Engineering, a St. Louis, Missouri-based engineering firm, has opened a Dallas-area office and named Judd Presley as vice president to focus on growing the company’s business in Texas.

Presley brings 18 years of marketing analysis, strategic planning, management, and business development experience to G&W in Dallas. The local office marks the company’s fourth expansion.

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