People on the move: Oak View Group and more…

We round up the latest movements from the ticketing and associated industries…

Advisory, development and investment company for the live entertainment and sports industries, Oak View Group, has announced three executives will be joining the team at Coachella Valley Arena. All three hires will report to senior vice president of entertainment – facilities and general manager for Coachella Valley Arena, John Bolton.

JoAnn Armstrong (Pictured middle) will be joining as vice president of programming and will lead the team on content programming across all concerts, family shows and special events. Armstrong will also help to facilitate the American Hockey League (AHL) hockey schedules. 

Armstrong said: “I’m thrilled to join the inaugural OVG team for the Coachella Valley Arena under the guidance of SVP, GM John Bolton, working together to elevate the artist and fan experience for the Coachella Valley.

“This already top destination will have an amazing new home for our touring artists around the world, as well as home to the AHL team of the Seattle Kraken, among the other diverse programming planned.”

Joyce Szudzik (Pictured right) has come in as the vice president of marketing from AEG Worldwide. Szudzik will oversee arena marketing strategy including brand, ticket sales, media buying, partnership marketing, social and digital media. 

She will also liaise with OVG Los Angeles and other arena stakeholders to ensure brand alignment. 

Szudzik said: “The opportunity to build an arena in a pristine market, and with Oak View Group, so rarely happens, I knew it would align with my sustainability mindset. Coupled with the chance to work with John Bolton and with my dream to build the entire martech stack and marketing strategies from the ground for an arena, I knew it was the next challenge I wanted to take in my music career.” 

Szudzik started her career in PACE (Live Nation Entertainment) amphitheatres and worked her way to national tour marketing at AEG Live. 

OVG also welcomes Ruth Hill (Pictured left) as vice president of finance for the Coachella Valley Arena. 

Hill has previously worked for National Basketball Association teams such as Utah Jazz, Sacramento Kings and San Antonio Spurs. She has also worked with National Hockey League (NHL) teams Nashville Predators and Dallas Stars. 

Hill said: “I’m thrilled for the opportunity to work for a company as successful as Oak View Group and specifically under the proven leadership of John Bolton. The Coachella Valley Arena is going to be a game-changer for quality entertainment and a positive impact for the surrounding Palm Springs area.”

CAA Sports, an international sports marketing agency, is set to open an office in Singapore. Adrian Staiti will come in as CAA Sports’ president Asia-Pacific (APAC) and will head up the new office. 

He was previously head of the Sportfive Agency.

Elsewhere in live events planning, Adrien Aloi has been named the senior event experience manager for New York Hilton Midtown. 

Previously, Aloi has had a hand in putting together the Golden Globes, an awards ceremony that celebrates American and international television and movie stars. 

Aloi said on LinkedIn: “I’m incredibly excited to be returning to The Big Apple next week and joining the New York Hilton Midtown team as a senior event experiences manager. Here’s to new beginnings, with some wonderful familiar faces, in a city that has always felt like home.” 

In the UK and amid Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s cabinet reshuffle, Nadine Dorries has been made the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.

Dorries takes over from Oliver Dowden, who has been made Co-Chairman of the Conservative Party. 

She tweeted: “Huge thanks to wonderful, talented, brilliant team & colleagues at @DHSCgovuk. Privilege to serve as Minister for just over 2 years and proud of the work we did in really challenging circumstances, particularly on suicide prevention and mental health. 

“Excited to be appointed Secretary of State @DCMS. Hit the ground running this morn with my first oral questions and getting stuck into job at hand! Looking forward to building on work of @OliverDowden and championing our unrivalled arts, sports, media and digital sectors.” 

Two Circles has appointed Adam Davis as its new managing director for North America. Davis is the former Harris Blitzer Sports & Entertainment (HBSE) chief commercial officer. 

During his tenure at HBSE, Davis had a portfolio which boasted NBA team Philadelphia 76ers and NHL side New Jersey Devils, as well as English Premier League club Crystal Palace. 

Prior to his role with HBSE, Davis also spent over six years at Madison Square Garden Company. 

Do you have news of an appointment that we should know about? Get in touch by emailing and we’ll include it in our next round-up. 

Images: Oak View Group