DI People: Rug Doctor, Critical Start, and Infogroup Make Leadership Announcements

You’ll also find news from Meeting Professionals International, Varsity Brands, Atmos Energy, CSW Industrials, the Texas Women’s Foundation, and the Denton Chamber of Commerce in this roundup of executive and leadership moves by companies and organizations in North Texas.

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 the people moves tied to innovation and technology in the region.

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Forsberg to become CEO of Rug Doctor

Travis Lews

Chris Forsberg

Chris Forsberg will assume the role of chief executive office at Plano-based Rug Doctor LLC. The current CEO, Travis Lewis, will transition to chairman of the board.

Rug Doctor is a global leader in consumer professional-grade do-it-yourself deep carpet cleaning systems. The company’s major transition will go into effect on Sept. 3.

Most recently, Forsberg was an executive vice president at WIS International, a global strategic partner for leading retailers and manufacturers.

Critical Start names Myers as VP of channels and alliances

vice president

Dwayne Myers

Dwayne Myers has been appointed to vice president of channels and alliances at Plano-based Critical Start, a provider of Managed Detection and Response (MDR) services.

Myers will report to CEO Rob Davis. In his new role, he will be tasked with leading the expansion of Critical Start’s national distributors, network of value-added resellers, and other channel partners.

Myers has more than two decades of security experience in channel development, sales strategy, and business operations for both manufacturing and channel partners. His experience ranges from startups to international corporations.

Most recently, Myers was responsible for growing the Palo Alto Networks partner business for its Cortex Platform across the central United States and Latin America regions.

MPI hires Gregg as SVP of experience

Annette Gregg

Annette Gregg has been hired as senior vice president of experience at Meeting Professionals International, a Dallas-based global meeting and event industry association.

In her new post, Gregg will be responsible for MPI’s community education, events, and experiences that elevate meetings and careers.

Gregg will begin her new job on Sept. 9, and will report to Chief Operating Officer Darren Temple. Previously, Gregg was senior vice president for PRA, one of the nation’s largest business events agencies.

Varsity Brands hires Kentor as chief of strategy and business transformation

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Justin Kentor

Varsity Brands—a Dallas-based provider of team sports, school spirit, and achievement recognition—announced that Justin Kentor has joined the company as chief of strategy and business transformation.

Kentor will be in charge of the strategic integration of new initiatives, as well as overall development and execution of the Varsity Brand’s business and growth strategies. He will report to Varsity Brands CEO Adam Blumenfeld.

Kentor comes to Varsity Brands from Nike Inc., where he was most recently the head of Digital Activity Commerce, providing customers with a curated and personalized shopping experience.

Akers to become president and CEO of Atmos Energy

Kevin Akers

Kevin Akers has been appointed president and chief executive officer of Atmos Energy Corp., where he will succeed Mike Haefner in leading the company.

Atmos is the nation’s largest fully regulated, natural gas-only distributor of safe, clean, efficient and affordable energy. 

Akers is currently the executive vice president, but will assume his new role and become a member of the board on Oct. 1. 

Haefner earlier announced his plans to step down from president and CEO to focus on a health issue. He plans to retire on Jan. 1.

CSW Industrials hires Griffin as its VP of investor relations and treasurer

Vice President

Adrianne Griffin

Adrianne Griffin has been hired as vice president of investor relations and treasurer by Dallas-based CSW Industrials.

CSWI is a diversified industrial growth company that focuses on industrial products and specialty channels.

Griffin will report to CSW Industrials’ chief financial officer, Gregg Branning. Most recently, Griffin was director of investor relations at EnLink Midstream, a Dallas-based Fortune 500 midstream energy infrastructure company.

Infogroup adds two members to its board of directors

Vice President

Chris Terrill

Nikul Patel

Infogroup, a provider of data and data-driven marketing solutions, announced that Chris Terrill and Nikul Patel have joined the firm’s board of directors.

The company said that the appointments deepen its advisory expertise at a crucial time of growth for the company. Terrill is the former CEO of HomeAdvisor and Angie’s List, while Patel is the former chief product officer and chief operating officer of LendingTree.

“Both Chris and Nikul have proven track records of leading world-class companies during times of expansion and transition, and we’re pleased to be adding their collective knowledge to the deep well of expertise that guides Infogroup on a daily basis,” Mike Iaccarino, chairman and CEO of Infogroup, said in a statement. “As the business intelligence and data ecosystem continue to undergo dramatic shifts, we know we have access to the type of visionary insights needed to evolve with the landscape.”

Texas Women’s Foundation chooses seven new board members

Seven new board members have been chosen to serve with the Texas Women’s Foundation for the next three terms, from 2018-21. One major addition is the Dallas Mavericks’ CEO, Cynt Marshall.

Formerly known as the Dallas Women’s Foundation, the group focuses on advancing economic security and leadership opportunities for women and girls. Roslyn Dawson Thompson, TWF’s president and CEO, said she and her team are thrilled to have such talented women join one of the most diverse and inclusive boards in North Texas.

“These new members, along with our executive committee and other board members, bring their expertise, passion for our mission and networks of influence to support our work throughout North Texas and the state,” Dawson Thompson said.

Joining Marshall on the board are:

  • Hattie Hill, president and CEO, Hattie Hill Enterprises, Inc.
  • Sarah K. Miller, president and Chair, Kozmetsky Family Foundation
  • Tricia Miller, Miller Family Foundation
  • Neena Newberry, president, Newberry Executive Solutions
  • Debbie Rollins, audit partner, Grant Thornton
  • Lissa Smith, community relations adviser, FedEx Office

Denton Chamber of Commerce names Pistana as vice president

Vice President

Mike Pistana

Mike Pistana has been named by the Denton Chamber of Commerce as vice president of the Denton Convention & Visitor’s Bureau. The appointment follows a three-month search to replace Kim Phillips, who served in the role for 16 years.

Phillips left earlier this year to head the Texas Association of Convention & Visitors Bureaus.

Pistana joins the Denton Chamber of Commerce from Las Vegas, Nevada. He has more than 20 years of experience in leading sales and marketing efforts for some of the world’s top hospitality and resort brands.

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