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Monday, Apr 15, 2024

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NEWSMAKERS Biotechnology Arvind Sood was appointed vice president of investor relations at Thousand Oaks-based biotechnology company Amgen. He joins the world’s largest biotechnology company from a post as senior vice president for investor relations and financial communications at Aventis S.A. Sood previously worked at Rhone-Poulenc S.A. and stayed on when the company merged with Hoechst A.G. In his post at Amgen, he will be responsible for developing and running the company’s relations with investors. Consumer Products Disney Consumer Products has promoted Jessi Dunne to executive vice president, Global Toys. Dunne was senior vice president, Global Toys. Consulting California Manufacturing Technology Consultants has hired Keith Campbell as director of sales and Chris Allen as director of public affairs. Previously, Campbell was director of sales for Rhinotek Computer Products and Allen was vice president of marketing and communications for Hoffman Video Systems. Entertainment Erica Villafane has been named film associate at Media Distributors, a Studio City-based firm that is one of the leading suppliers of videotape, film stock and recording media and other products to Hollywood. In her new role, Villafane will seek and supervise the sales of motion picture film stock to producers of indie films, TV commercials and music videos. Villafane was previously owner of another film stock sales company called Eyeshot, which merged with Shortenz in 2001. Shortenz, a competitor of Media Distributors, was earlier this year bought out by that company. Sue Binford and Kevin Brockman were promoted to senior vp corporate communications and entertainment communications, respectively, at The Walt Disney Co.’s Disney-ABC Television Group. Binford will now oversee corporate communications for the entire TV division, and Brockman will oversee entertainment communications for the same. The TV division includes ABC News, ABC Sports, ABC Radio, ABC’s owned stations and all ABC-related corporate initiatives. Also, all entertainment networks under the ABC Cable Networks Group. Before Disney, Binford was at CNN News Group, Turner Broadcasting System, NBC and MTV Networks. Brockman worked at UPN, Fox Television Prods. and Radio City Music Hall. James Kraus was promoted to president of Carsey-Werner Domestic Television Distribution. He will oversee all domestic sales, marketing an research activities for the division’s off-network programming. Kraus was previously executive vice president of the division, which is part of the Studio City-based indie studio Carsey-Werner Llc. Before joining Carsey-Werner in 1999, Kraus was with MCA/Universal Television. Andy Lewis was promoted to executive vice president and general manager at Warner Bros. Animation. He will continue overseeing management of the studio, including oversight of daily operations and up to business planning. Lewis was previously senior vice president and general manager, having joined the company in 1997. Lewis will report to Warner Bros. Animation president Sander Schwartz. Universal City-based L.A. Studios Inc. has hired Jonathan Whitehead as general manager, operations and sales at its Westside facility, Margarita Mix de Santa Monica. Whitehead worked most recently as a freelance producer for ad agencies, production and visual effects companies. Government Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has appointed Karen Kukurin deputy director and community liaison in the governor’s Los Angeles office. Kukurin was most recently program director for the Valley Leadership Institute. Insurance Carmelo Spinella, senior vice president and CFO at 21st Century Insurance Group, has resigned to accept a post at Capital Research and Management Co. in Los Angeles. Spinella joined the Woodland Hills-based auto insurance company just over a year ago. He plans to exit 21st Century when the company’s third quarter financial statements are issued. 21st Century said it has retained Highland Partners to conduct a search for a replacement. Technology Edward Smith has resigned the post of president and chief executive of SMTEK, a Moorpark-base technology firm, effective Sept. 20. Kirk Waldron, who had been the company’s senior vice president and CFO, was appointed interim president by the company’s board. Smith left SMTEK, a manufacturer of electronic components, to assume a senior executive position with Avnet Electronics Marketing, Inc., which does the same type of work. “I have decided for personal reasons to relocate to the area of the country that I call home,” Smith said in a statement. Brett Hauke was hired as a senior support engineer at TeamAutomation, a Simi Valley database design and implementation company. Hauke joined the 16-year-old firm with extensive experience with GoldMine, TeamAutomation’s premier item that offers a “one-stop electronic solution to handle all facets of customer relations,” according to a statement. Hauke is an Ameritech College graduate.

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