We have personnel news to report from the Indianapolis Indians (Class AAA; International League) and the Altoona Curve (Class AA; Eastern League).
In Indianapolis, the Indians have announced six recent hirings, along with five promotions granted this offseason.
Anna Kayser returned to the Indians as baseball communications coordinator in January, just months removed from working the 2019 season as the Tribe’s baseball communications assistant. Kayser attended the University of Iowa, where she was sports editor for the campus newspaper, The Daily Iowan, covering the football and wrestling programs. She graduated last December with bachelor’s degrees in both journalism and sport & recreation management.
Bill Fulton joined the Indians before the holiday season in a newly created position as business intelligence analyst. Fulton previously worked for the team as director of marketing from 2000-03 and held various positions since then, most recently as a senior data analyst for Anthem Health. Fulton earned his undergraduate degree in chemical engineering from Purdue University, his MBA at Duke University and a Master of Health Informatics from IUPUI.
Laura Lee started with the Tribe after the New Year as motion & graphic designer. She spent last summer as a production assistant for the Quad Cities River Bandits (Low A; Midwest League). Lee graduated from Northern Illinois University with a bachelor’s in communication studies and received certificates of study in both media production and film & television studies. She will graduate with her Master’s in Sport Management this May. While on campus, she worked two-plus years with NIU Huskie Vision, the university’s video production department.
Michelle Treviño joined the Indians front office in January as guest relations coordinator. She previously worked for Liberty Mutual Insurance Company as a claims customer care associate. Treviño also has prior experience as a customer service representative with Pasadena (Calif.) Humane Society and as a senior shareholder service representative for American Funds/Capital Group. She attended the University of Southern Indiana.
Nathan Watson is the Tribe’s most recent hire as a ticket sales account executive. His career in sports began with the WNBA’s Chicago Sky in 2018. Last year he worked for the G-League’s Fort Wayne Mad Ants and was most recently a member of the Indianapolis Colts Consumer Sales team. Watson played collegiate baseball and graduated from Trine University with his bachelor’s in business administration – marketing and sport management.
Paige McClung joins the team in a newly created role as stadium events manager. She has worked near Victory Field since 2014, holding positions as banquet server, banquet lead and event operations supervisor at the JW Marriott in downtown Indianapolis. McClung graduated from IUPUI with a bachelor’s degree in tourism, convention & event management.
Bryan Spisak is the Tribe’s director of business systems & talent. His first position with the Indians came in 2007 as ticket services assistant, and he’s since held full-time positions as ticket services manager (2007-12), ticket services manager & internship coordinator (2012-16) and senior ticket services manager & internship coordinator (2016-19). Spisak is a 2007 graduate from Ball State University, where he earned his bachelor’s in sport administration.
Cara Carrion became the Tribe’s ticket services coordinator this winter and now oversees the club’s six ticket services assistants. She first joined the Indians in Jan. 2017 as a ticket services assistant and was hired full-time in Dec. 2017 as guest relations coordinator. Carrion attended the University of Indianapolis and earned her bachelor’s in sport management in May 2017.
Cheyne Reiter was promoted to director of communications during the offseason after previously serving as the Tribe’s baseball communications manager for three seasons. His start in Minor League Baseball began with the Pulaski Mariners (Rookie; Appalachian League) as a media relations intern, and he eventually landed with the Clinton LumberKings (Low A; Midwest League) and the Reno Aces (Class AAA; Pacific Coast League) in various communications, media relations and broadcasting roles. Reiter graduated from the University of Iowa in 2013 with his bachelor’s in journalism.
Kathryn Bobel is now the Tribe’s premium & ticket services manager, transitioning from her previous post as premium services & events coordinator. Bobel started with the Indians last May after nearly three seasons as a season ticket service representative with the Chicago Cubs. She previously spent three seasons with the Charlotte Knights (Class AAA; International League) in ticketing and almost five years with the Hickory Crawdads (Low A; Midwest League), also in ticketing. Bobel graduated with her bachelor’s in sport management from Bowling Green State University in 2008.
Sarah Haynes is entering her eighth season with the Indians and first as business operations manager. She joined the Tribe front office in Oct. 2012 as an administrative assistant and was promoted to premium services & events coordinator in Jan. 2016. She then became the club’s business operations coordinator in Jan. 2018 before ascending to her current role. Haynes graduated from Manchester College in May 2012 with her bachelor’s in sport management.
In Altoona, the Curve have announced several offseason changes to their front office staff ahead of the 2020 season.
Current employees Michelle Anna and Annie Choiniere have taken new roles on staff between the 2019 and 2020 seasons and join forces with several new hires: Ashley Daley, Kyle Wilson, Alex Popies, Corbin Padgett, Braeden Appleman, Megan Corcoran, James Petrella and Justin Gallanty.
Michelle Anna took over as the team’s Administrative Assistant in October, after completing her ninth season as the Assistant Concessions Manager. Although she enjoyed the position and working alongside Director of Concessions Glenn McComas, she was eager to make a change when the opportunity arose. Michelle has been with the Curve since 2008 and resides in Hastings, Pa. with her husband, Kevin, and her daughter, Ali.
Ashley Daley filled Anna’s role as Assistant Concessions Manager in November. She has worked for her hometown Curve since 2009 as a gameday concessions employee. Daley completed her associates degree in Physical Therapy and bachelor’s degree in General Science from Mount Aloysius College in December 2015.
“Anytime we have moved an employee to a new role with the organization, we do so to capitalize on their strengths,” said Curve general manager Derek Martin. “After Donna Harpster retired last September, Michelle has seamlessly taken the reigns at the front desk. Her 12 years of experience with us makes her the perfect point guard for our day-to-day operations. The same goes for Ashley as a new full-time staff member. We have watched her grow up right in front of us and we’re thrilled to see how she continues to do that with us year-round.”
Annie Choiniere absorbed new responsibilities at the end of the 2019 season as the team’s Director of Community Relations. She continues to operate as Social Media Manager as well. Choiniere begins her second season with the Curve in 2020 and joined the organization after one season with the Harrisburg Senators (Class AA; Eastern League)
“Annie was in a brand new role when she came on board with us in 2019,” said Martin. “With her hard work on social media for us, she already had one arm extended into the community. It was a natural transition adding community relations to her plate so she could to jump in with both feet to connect with Blair County and beyond.”
The Curve added three new Ticket Sales Managers at the close of the 2019 season with Kyle Wilson, Alex Popies and Corbin Padgett. The upcoming season will be the first year in Curve, Pa. for all three while Wilson and Popies start their Minor League Baseball careers in Altoona.
Wilson is from Sayville, N.Y. and graduated from Ohio University in 2019 with a Sport Management and Finance degree before he joined the front office in a full-time role. Popies is a Pittsburgh native and earned his degree in Economics from Washington & Jefferson College in May 2019. Padgett joins the Curve after he spent one season with each the Harrisburg Senators and Binghamton Rumble Ponies (Class AA; Eastern League). He hails from Carlisle, Pa. and is an alumnus of California University of Pennsylvania, where he completed his degree in Sport Management in 2017.
“The new trio on the ticket staff has brought a lot of energy and enthusiasm to the office. They came into a really good situation by starting at the end of last season and have capitalized on the mentorship from the veteran ticket reps,” said Martin.
Braeden Appleman takes over as the newest Director of Creative Services and will oversee the production and entertainment aspects within the ballpark. He joined the ballclub as a Production Intern for the 2019 season. The Roaring Spring, Pa. native graduated from Indiana University of Pennsylvania with a degree in Communications Media in December and joined the staff in his new full-time role after the new year.
Appleman will team up with Megan Corcoran as the Creative Services Assistant, a new front office role for 2020. She is from Boise, Idaho and graduated from Boise State University in 2018 with her degree in Media Arts. Corcoran starts her second season in Minor League Baseball after she spent the 2019 season as a Production Intern with the Boise Hawks (Short Season A; Northwest League).
“We have seen fan engagement really soar due to the new videoboard that was installed prior to the 2018 season. David Gallagher, a true entertainment Jedi, did a remarkable job with that over his three years and he showed Braeden the ropes as an intern last year. We are excited to bring more young talents on board in that area with Braeden and Megan, who will allow us to expand on our creation of creative content,” said Martin.
James Petrella joins the Curve for his first season as the team’s head groundskeeper. He comes to Altoona by way of the Akron RubberDucks (Class AA; Eastern League), where he spent the previous two seasons as an assistant groundskeeper. The Tacoma, Wash. native started his baseball career with the RubberDucks in 2014 while he was a student at the University of Akron. Petrella completed his degree in Sport Management at Akron in 2016 and continued to work with the RubberDucks through the 2016 season. He spent 2017 back in Washington state as a gameday groundskeeper with the Tacoma Rainiers (Class AAA; Pacific Coast League) and an intern at the Seattle Seahawks practice facility before he returned to Northeast Ohio the following year.
“James’ groundskeeping experience in the Eastern League and the Pacific Northwest is a valuable combination. This is a tough position to find the right experience but we are confident that James is ready to make that jump into a lead role for the first time,” said Martin.
There will be a new voice in the broadcast booth alongside Garett Mansfield in 2020 with Justin Gallanty joining the Curve as the Communications and Broadcasting Assistant. Gallanty is from Westport, Conn. and spent the 2019 campaign in a similar role with the Bowie Baysox (Class AA; Eastern League) after he called games for the Burlington Royals (Rookie; Appalachian League) in 2018. His baseball broadcast credentials also include single seasons with the Bourne Braves (summer collegiate; Cape Cod Baseball League) and Ocean State Waves (summer collegiate; New England Collegiate Baseball League) in addition to the Maryland Baseball Network while he was a student at the University of Maryland. Gallanty completed his degree in Broadcast Journalism at Maryland in 2019.
“I am excited to work alongside Justin this season,” said Mansfield, the Curve’s Director of Communications and Broadcasting. “My experience watching him work in the past and the glaring recommendations from those who know him well certainly made him stand out. He will be in a position to thrive by taking this step in his career.”