The Toy Association announced the election of four new members to its Board of Directors for two-year terms expiring in February 2021, during its annual general meeting. The meeting was open to all members of the organization and took place during Toy Fair New York at the Jacob K. Javits Center in New York City.
During the meeting, four candidates were elected to serve their first terms on The Toy Association’s Board: John Frascotti, president and COO, Hasbro; Aaron Muderick, president, Crazy Aaron’s Puttyworld; Michael Rinzler, co-president and founding partner, Wicked Cool Toys; and Steve Totzke, chief commercial officer, Mattel. The Toy Association’s Board of Directors Nominating Committee chose to leave one board seat vacant for future consideration.
Barbara Finigan, executive vice-president and chief legal officer, Hasbro, will depart the Executive Committee and Board. Board members Bruce Raiffe, president, GUND, and Richard Barry, president and CEO, TRU Kids, Inc. have concluded their terms. In addition, Nancy Zwiers, chief marketing officer, Spin Master will depart the Board, while Eva Lorenz, general manager of toys and games for Amazon, has concluded her term of service on the Chairman’s Advisory Committee.
The Toy Association’s Board Executive Committee elected by the Board Members on February 15 will include Chairman Bob Wann, president of PlayMonster; Skip Kodak, senior vice-president, Americas, LEGO, as vice chairman; Geoffrey Walker, president and CEO, KidKraft as the Association’s secretary-treasurer (previously Walker served as acting secretary-treasurer); and Jennifer Caveza, senior vice-president, toys, Nickelodeon Consumer Products, and Tim Kilpin, formerly of Activision, as members at large. Toy Association president and CEO Steve Pasierb will serve in an ex officio role.
Wann named five executives to the Chairman’s Advisory Committee 2019-2020: former Association chairman John Gessert, president and CEO, American Plastic Toys; former Association chairman Soren Torp Laursen, who sits on the board of Mattel; Ashley Mady, director of brand development, Basic Fun!, and president, Women in Toys, Licensing & Entertainment (WIT); Richard Barry; and Anne Carrihill, general manager, toys and games, Amazon.
Pasierb spoke of The Toy Association’s continued achievements to protect and promote members’ businesses during 2018, despite a challenging retail environment and threats of tariffs on toys, and highlighted key aspects of the Association’s 2019 action plan. Walker in his role as secretary/treasurer, provided an overview of The Toy Association’s 2018 fiscal results, 2019 budget, and continued healthy and sustainable financial position.