Power Moves is a column where we chart the comings and goings of talent across the region. Got a new hire, new gig or promotion? Email us: email@example.com.
African American Chamber of Commerce of Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware (AACC) welcomed a new leader in Regina A. Hairston in the last few days of 2020. The org had been without a president and CEO since Donavan West left his role this summer.
AACC’s board of directors chose Hairston to lead the organization after an extensive search, The Philadelphia Tribune reported. She brings more than 20 years of senior management experience to the position, including strategic fundraising and partnership development. She recently served as chief deputy register at the Philadelphia Register of Wills, where she led the COVID-19 pandemic response in instituting virtual service delivery of probate and marriage licenses.
“Regina has a wealth of senior government, public and private sector leadership experience making her the ideal candidate for the position,” AACC Board Chairman Steven Scott Bradley said in a news release. “She is a results driven leader who has built her career on advocating on behalf of diverse constituencies and we are beyond confident that she will help our members navigate this uncertain time.”
Check out Bradley’s thoughts on how the Biden administration’s policy priorities could impact minority communities through wealth creation.
Comcast began the year with an announcement that Dana Strong, former Philly-based head of Comcast Cable customer services, will become the next CEO of Sky, Comcast’s British media and telecommunications conglomerate.
She succeeds Jeremy Darroch, who was with the group for 13 years and will stay on as executive chairman through 2021, Comcast said.
Before joining Comcast, Strong served as president and COO of Virgin Media and CTO of Liberty Global, a European cable company that spans 14 countries. Strong has managed both cable and satellite businesses for more than 20 years and formerly led the company’s residential business, including Comcast’s Xfinity brand and products. She took her new position early last month in the U.K.
“Her global experience and vision coupled with her leadership and track record at some of the largest media and telecommunications companies in the world make her the perfect leader for Sky,” CEO Brian Roberts said in a statement.
It’s the second recent appointment of a woman to one Comcast’s top positions, after the company promoted Dalila Wilson-Scott to executive VP and chief diversity officer of the corporation in October.
State-backed biz capital and resource provider Ben Franklin Technology Partners added members to its board after bringing on a new president and CEO in Scott Nissenbaum, who himself was promoted earlier this month after longtime leader RoseAnn Rosenthal stepped down.
Nissenbaum joins the board along with Orim Graves, the former executive director of the National Association of Securities Professionals, and LeRoy Jones, CEO of EREflow. Jones is also the former CEO of Ben Franklin portfolio company GSI Health, which was acquired by Medecision in 2019.
Some board leadership changes for 2021 were also confirmed, with Janice Giannini elected as vice chairman, Robert Ciaruffoli elected as corporate treasurer and Mindy Posoff re-elected corporate secretary. BFTP also thanked investor Osagie Imasogie, who stepped down from the board after 17 years of service.
“With these changes and additions at Ben Franklin, we are enthusiastic about the opportunities to build from a base of so much accomplishment for the benefit of our region,” Board Chair Charles Robins said in a statement. “RoseAnn’s preparation for this transition has been thorough and admirable. With her continued guidance and the engagement of our experienced board, Scott has inherited an organization and team that is positioned for further growth and impact.”
Crossbeam, the Center City software company that manages a partner ecosystem platform, welcomed Chris Castaldo as chief information and security officer in late January. He previously held that role at Dataminr and has built cybersecurity teams at multiple companies.
Castaldo is also a visiting fellow at the George Mason University’s Antonin Scalia Law School and the author of an upcoming cybersecurity book called “Start-Up Secure: Baking Cybersecurity into Your Company from Founding to Exit.”
Kenyatta James joins the Economy League of Philadelphia as its Philadelphia Anchors for Growth and Equity (PAGE) business engagement manager. The PAGE program has a goal to get more large institutions, like the city’s eds and meds systems, to purchase from local businesses. It’s furthering this work via the forthcoming PAGE Prep program, which James will develop with a goal of bringing capital and business connections to Black and brown founders.
Kenyatta told the Economy League that as a former entrepreneur, he “can appreciate the concept behind PAGE more than most.”
“Building a business is tough, and many minorities have been denied the opportunity to build the wealth and connections that make the process easier,” he said. “Working with the city’s biggest institutions to create more opportunities for disadvantaged entrepreneurs was too exciting of an opportunity to pass up.”
Chad Stender, previously a managing director at SeventySix Capital, was recently promoted to partner, the firm announced in January.
Stender has been with the the sports tech venture capital firm for nearly a decade and had focused on deal sourcing, leading finance operations and investor relations for the fund. He sits on the board of two of the firm’s portfolio companies, FORTË and Vigtory. Stender previously worked for the Philadelphia Flyers and Comcast Spectacor, and co-led a sports accessory startup.
“Our team and I have worked hard to position ourselves at the epicenter of the sports industry, accelerate our business and continue to work with entrepreneurs to build the next generation of companies in the sports tech, esports and sports betting industries,” he said in a statement.
SeventySix also saw two leadership changes in Scott Powell, a former associate who was named an analyst, and James Santore, previously the chief of staff who will become director of marketing.
U.S. Small Business Administration Mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator Steve Bulger stepped down from his role in January to take a role as administrator for Saratoga County, New York.
Bulger was a White House appointee who took over in the mid-Atlantic region in 2019, and was responsible for the delivery and management of SBA’s programs, financial assistance and business development initiatives supporting entrepreneurs in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Virginia, the D.C. Metro Area, Maryland and Delaware. John Fleming, SBA’s Delaware district director, will be his interim replacement.
“I am especially proud of the tremendous effort our SBA Mid-Atlantic team has put forth in guiding the businesses we serve through some of the most difficult times in recent memory,” Bulger said in a statement. “These amazing men and women have given their all to implement the Paycheck Protection Program and disaster relief efforts during near-impossible conditions — putting in extra hours and often virtually holding the hands of small business owners as they navigated the process.”
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