DI People: Topgolf, ActivePure Technologies, and North Dallas Bank & Trust Co. Make Moves

In this weekly roundup of executive moves in North Texas, you'll also find news from Skanska USA, Velocity Commerce Group, Munck Wilson Mandala, and UNT.

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.

Don’t miss a move: Get Dallas Innovates Every Day. Have a move? Let us know.

Topgolf appoints a new CEO

Artie Starrs

Dallas-headquartered Topgolf, the global sports entertainment company, has named Artie Starrs as its new chief executive officer, succeeding Dolf Berle.

Starrs most recently served as Yum! Brands’ global CEO for Pizza Hut, in which he oversaw  18,000 locations across 110 countries. Before that, he was the president of Pizza Hut U.S. He joined Yum! Brands after serving as the CFO for Rave Cinemas.

Effective April 5, he’ll be responsible for the growth and expansion of the entertainment company, fueled by new parent company Callaway Golf. Starrs is already “deeply connected” to the Dallas community. He’s on the boards of The Greater Dallas Youth Orchestra, The Tartan Board at Texas Scottish Rite Hospital, and Big Thought’s Creator’s Council, among others.

ActivePure Technologies names former White House coronavirus coordinator as chief advisor

Deborah Birx

Esteemed physician, scientific researcher, and former White House Coronavirus Coordinator Deborah Birx, M.D. is joining Dallas-based ActivePure Technologies as chief medical and scientific advisor.

Birx, regarded as one of the highest-ranking infectious disease experts in the world, has an array of relevant experience. As a retired Army physician, who eventually rose to colonel, she has served three presidents: George W. Bush, Barack Obama, and Donald Trump.

During that time, she held the position of U.S. Global AIDS Coordinator for seven years, in which she oversaw the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief. It is today known as the largest global health program ever launched by a single nation. Her appointment coincides with the news that she is joining the George W. Bush Institute in Dallas as a fellow in global health. You can learn more here.

North Dallas Bank & Trust Co. gets a new CEO

Larry Miller

North Dallas Bank & Trust Co. (NDBT) has announced that its current president, Larry A. Miller, has been named as its new chief executive officer, effective April 1.

Miller succeeds W. Michael Shipman, who announced his retirement after serving NDBT for more than 25 years. The appointment coincides with the bank celebrating its 60th anniversary. When it opened, NDBT had $2 million in total assets, three officers, and seven employees. Today, it has $1.5 billion in total assets, more than 160 employees, and five branches.

“It is fitting that during NDBT’s 60th year in business, we appoint a new leader who has long-term vision, strong management style, and a customer-based approach to banking,” Shipman said in a statement. “Larry’s character, ability to innovate, and proven decision-making skills will serve our bank well as NDBT begins a new decade. We are confident that under Larry’s direction and influence, NDBT will continue to raise the expectations of what a bank can be.”

Skanska adds a VP of Operations in North Texas

Joe Lindemann

Skanska USA, a leading construction and development company headquartered in New York City, has promoted industry veteran Joe Lindemann to vice president of operations in North Texas.

Lindemann has 38 years of experience in commercial construction, initially joining Skanska in 1983 as a laborer. During that time, he has served on the construction team for a variety of major projects: the Mayborn Museum Complex for Baylor University, the Dallas Baptist University Women’s Dormitory, Riverside Community Hospital, Metroplex Hospital, Baylor Scott & White, and more.

Most recently, he was Skanska’s project executive – field operations, in which he spearheaded the construction of Skanska’s Collin College Wylie Campus project. He is currently leading operations of a higher education campus redevelopment project in Fort Worth.

Velocity Commerce Group names a new president

Joe Scartz

Velocity Commerce Group (VCG), an omnichannel commerce consultancy, has promoted Chief Digital Commerce Officer Joe Scartz to president.

Scartz is one of the original founders of VCG. Under his leadership, the company has gathered a team of seasoned retail veterans with vast consulting experience. In moving to the role of president, Becca Kuo will become director and lead of the performance media practice.

The appointment coincides with VCG celebrating its two-year anniversary and a milestone of double-digit growth. Backed by TPN and Omnicom, VCG aims to solve retail challenges across channels and find solutions for complete commerce.

Munck Wilson Mandala adds a trademark attorney to its team

Chandler Stephens

Technology-focused law firm Munck Wilson Mandala has announced that trademark associate Chandler Stephens is joining its intellectual property practice.

Stephens has five years of legal experience in trademark and copyright clearance, prosecution, and enforcement; rights of publicity enforcement; and IP licensing and transactions. Most recently, she was an associate at Norton Rose Fulbright.

In her new role, Stephens will support Munck Wilson Mandala’s growing soft IP practice, which focuses on trademark, copyright, and trade secret transactional and dispute work.

UNT College of Visual Arts and Design gets a new dean

Karen Hutzel

The University of North Texas in Denton has named Karen Hutzel as its dean for the top-ranked College of Visual Arts and Design, effective July 1. She succeeds Greg Watts.

Hutzel is an internationally recognized and community-minded arts leader who joins UNT from Ohio State University, where she was the chair of the Department of Arts Administration, Education, and Policy. She is also the founder and former president of the National Art Education Association’s Community Arts Caucus, and has published numerous articles and co-edited a book about the transformative power of art education in K-12 urban schools.

“Dr. Hutzel is a collaborative, caring and inclusive leader,” UNT Provost Jennifer Cowley said in a statement. “She is deeply committed to our standing as both a Tier One research university and a Minority-Serving Institution and will be working with the CVAD community to advance initiatives in support of our mission.”

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