New Hands on Deck

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Richard Gaudet

Richard Gaudet

Mission Critical Electronics has named Richard Gaudet president of its marine power division. He had previously been vice president and general manager at Xantrex, which is owned by Mission Critical. He assumed the new position on January 2 and, the Marine Power division consists of Newmar, ASEA and Xantrex.

Gaudet jointed Xantrex in 1997 and worked in many roles before taken the company helm in 2010. During his tenure, Xantrex expanded beyond marine into the RV and truck markets. The business added storage and power generation products to its portfolio with the addition of lithium ion and solar solutions. The company launched the Freedom X line of inverters and chargers and forged strategic partnerships.

“Rich is a strategic thinker who brings product and market knowledge and a strong track record of growth to the MCE Marine team,” Kevin Moschetti, CEO of Mission Critical Electronics, said in a statement. “His proven ability to develop strong customer and partner relationships and deliver innovative solutions to customer needs.”

Boats Group names new vice president of sales

John Souch

John Souch

Boats Group has promoted John Souch to vice president, sales – North America. John is responsible for leading Boats Group’s North American sales team. This includes managing relationships with more than 3,000 boat dealers and yacht brokers, plus partnerships with OEMs and larger dealer groups.

Souch brings 15 years of marine experience to the new role. Most recently, he was director of sales for Boats Group. Prior to that, he served in various roles at PepsiCo and TraderMedia.

“John has demonstrated great vision, leadership and energy as he successfully built our North American field sales team and operations over the past 15 years,” Sam Fulton, CEO, Boats Group, said in a statement. “We are very excited to see his efforts expand to include the North American OEM and inside sales teams.”

ASA appoints new manager

Rob Russel

Rob Russel

The American Sportfishing Association has named Rob Russel, a membership and customer service support professional as the group’s new member relations manager.

“Finding the right candidate for the new Member Relations Manager position was not easy,” Blake Swango, ASA vice president for trade show and membership, said in a statement. “The position required someone with a proven track record of providing outstanding customer support service to assist our members with whatever they may need. We also wanted someone who has a passion for the outdoors, including hunting and fishing. Rob has both.”

ASA created the member relations manager position to focus on supporting the association’s members and their staff point-of-contact. In addition to following up on members’ questions and requests, Russel will help them understand the benefits of membership and the business and legislative issues that are impacting their business.”

“Rob will be spending a great deal of his time on the road, meeting with our members and listening to their concerns about their business and our industry,” said Swango.

Russel has nearly 10 years of experience in customer service, having worked for resorts in guest relations. He also worked with BoatUS in its claims department and for several service-based franchises in northern Virginia. He and his wife live in Alexandria, Va.

Bill Griffin

Bill Griffin

Bill Griffin joins AkzoNobel

Bill Griffin has joined AkzoNobel as a technical sales representative for Interlux and Awlgrip yacht finishes for Maryland, Delaware, Northern Virginia and West Virginia. He brings years of marine industry experience to the position, including more than 30 with Fawcett Boat Supplies. Griffin is based in Annapolis, where he lives with his wife, Maggie.

Derema Group adds to sales team

Derema Group, a national sales and marketing agency for the marine, outdoor and RV markets, has picked Mike Slattery to cover the states of Michigan, Ohio and northern Indiana.

“Mike has a strong work ethic, incredible drive and is excited to work with the Derema team,” Kurt Forsman, Derema group president, said in a statement. “Mike brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to Derema Group and we can’t wait to see how he’ll strengthen our central territory.”

Slattery calls Roseville, Mich., home and he spent eight years in the United States Coast Guard as an underway engineering and 2 class machinery technician.

Caymas Yachts names Florida sales rep

Caymas Boats founder Earl Bentz has appointed marine-industry veteran Bob Bissinger sales representative for the Florida market. “We’re extremely excited to have Bob representing the Caymas brand in this key saltwater market,” Bentz said in a statement. “Bob has 30 years of sales and marketing experience working with independent Florida marine dealers as well as 10 years of experience in sales and marketing management with the Jupiter and Regulator boat brands.”

Founded in late 2018, Caymas builds fiberglass fishing boats and they feature the patented Stepped-Vee Ventilated Tunnel that was drawn by well-known designer Michael Peters. It reduces drag, increases speed and improves fuel economy.

The company started with the 26HB and 28HB hybrid bay boats and for 2020, Caymas will introduce offshore fishing models up to 39 feet.

Brad Kauffman joins North Point Yacht Sales

Brad Kauffman

Brad Kauffman

North Point Yacht Sales in Annapolis welcomes Brad Kauffman to its sales team. He has more than 20 years of experience in private yacht ownership and charter management.

Kauffman is a member of the Annapolis Yacht Club and has owned and raced several boats including a Pearson 30, a Shock 35, a J70 and a Farr 30. He has participated in 10 Key West Race Weeks, two Block Island Race Weeks, the Pineapple Cup in Montego Bay and the Newport to Ensenada race.

On the charter side, Kauffman has spent more than 100 weeks chartering monohull and catamaran sailboats in the British Virgin Islands and Florida Keys. 

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