John Galante is president of AE Ventures. Prior to founding AE Ventures in July 2008, Galante headed EH Publishing’s events division and contributed to the development of its publications, online media and new business ventures. At the conclusion of his tenure there, EH annually produced seven trade events, several awards programs and other special seminars, among them, the Electronic House Expos and the Worship Facilities Conference & Expo, both named to Trade Show Week‘s prestigious Fastest 50 Growing Shows list. Galante started his career at EH Publishing as editor-in-chief of its Custom Electronics Professional (CE Pro) magazine and in 2001 led the launch of TecHome Builder magazine as publisher/editor.
Before joining EH, Galante was with the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA), where he handled membership and program development for the Integrated Home Systems, Video and Accessories Divisions of the association. Galante has also served the Security Industry Association as executive director; Reed Exhibition Companies in variety of event management, marketing and business development positions; and Spiegel, Inc. as a creative services staff member and manager.
Galante spearheaded the founding of the Home Lighting Control Alliance, the Distributed Audio Alliance and the Consortium for Electronic Systems Technician Training. He is a past director of the International Association for Exhibitions and Events’ (IAEE) and past chair of its strategic development task force. In addition he has served as member of Convention Data Services’ Client Advisory Board and the Orange County Convention Center’s Client Advisory Board and as a director of the CEA’s TechHome Division. In 2001, the Home Automation & Networking Association (now CEA TechHome) named Galante its industry leader of the year.
He has presented at a number of prestigious industry conferences including IAEE’s Expo!Expo!, TS2, the International Builders’ Show, the Electronic House Expo, the Electronic Security Expo, the ESA Leadership Summit and the California Alarm Association’s Winter Convention. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Rhetoric and Speech Communications from the University of Illinois-Urbana.
AE Ventures’ Executive Vice President is Nancy Franco. Before joining AE Ventures, Nancy was with EH from 2001-2008, rising from coordinator to conference and special events manager and finally show director for both the award-winning Electronic House Expo and Electronic Security Expo. Before EH, Franco worked as exhibit manager for high tech Massachusetts-based firm and in exhibit services for large independent organizer, IDG. In 2009, she earned the designation of Certified Exhibition Manager from the International Association for Exhibitions and Events.
Allison Avril is Account Executive for AE Ventures. Allison is a 2011 graduate of Bridgewater State University where she graduated with a B.S. Degree in Business Management and a concentration in Marketing. Allison worked for Bank of America as a Sales Rep. for three years and prior to joining AE Ventures worked for Robert Half International doing recruiting and sales.
Jillian Bateman-Moore is Director of Marketing for AE Ventures. Jillian is a graduate of both Carnegie Mellon University and Ithaca College. She holds a master’s degree in professional writing with a concentration in public relations, advertising and design. Prior to joining the AE Team Jillian coordinated accounts for Krome Communications, one of Pittsburgh’s top 10 billing agencies. At KrÖme, Jillian worked with global and local clients, planning and executing strategic messaging for varying industries.
Steve Castle has over 20 years of experience writing about home technologies, smart and connected homes, green tech and the luxury market. He is the former editor of Robb Report, where he pioneered the luxury magazine’s high-end home theater and home technologies coverage. He went on to become the managing editor for Electronic House, where he initiated that magazine’s coverage of green home technologies. He is an ambassador for smart and connected home technologies, an advocate for green tech and energy efficiency, and he loves talking with homebuilders about the technologies they’re installing in houses. When he’s not writing about home and green technologies, he’s hiking or biking and enjoying the natural world.
Nicole Dreher is the Graphic Designer for AE Ventures. Joining the team in 2013, she creates print and digital assets across all AEV brands. Nicole is a 2010 graduate of the University of Massachusetts – Dartmouth, with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Graphic Design & Letterform. Prior to her position at AE Ventures, Nicole worked as a graphic designer for the business communications company AVI-SPL on-site at Dow Chemical in Marlborough, MA, as well as designing for various freelance clients. Nicole also has a passion for rescuing animals, volunteering and working at the Humane Society & Shelter South Coast for several years.
Wendy Dugas is Manager of Finance and Administration for AE Ventures. Wendy joined AE Ventures in 2013 and brings over 20 years of experience in finance and business analysis within various settings, including University and small businesses. Prior to joining AE Ventures, Wendy held the position of Budget Analyst for Information Services at Northeastern University, before moving on to Business Analysis, with a focus on providing business process solutions throughout the University. Other prior experiences include 8 years as Plant Fund Accountant at Boston College, financial sales operations for international electric vehicle startup and diversified accounting services for local independent CPA firm.
Jasmine Leitzel is a Business Development Executive at AE Ventures focusing on sponsorship sales for the TecHome Builder Summit. She graduated from Drexel University in 2010 with a degree in International Business and Economics and a minor in Spanish. A direct descendent of Mayflower pilgrim John Alden, Jasmine’s adventurous spirit has led her on many world travels throughout 6 continents. Prior to joining AE Ventures in 2013 she was an account executive at EH Publishing’s events department. She currently co-manages a music blog and owns a clothing line called Disco Gypsy.
Wendy Loew is VP of Sales for AE Ventures. She was previously the Group Show Director at Questex Media overseeing the Technology Events portfolio comprised of trade shows, hosted buyer summits, and corresponding print and digital media properties, as well as serving in sales management roles at 1105 Media, Advanstar, and CES with a focus on building strong relationships with key accounts, creating new, innovative products and sponsorship opportunities, and embracing integrated proposals to increase revenues. Wendy began her sales career at Lutron Electronics before embarking on her nearly 20 years of event experience.
Kathy Marando is E-Marketing Coordinator for AE Ventures responsible for editing and maintaining news content for a variety of audiences, spanning each AE Ventures brand. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Business and Marketing from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst and has worked previously as a client/server application developer for a direct marketing company. Prior to joining AE, Kathy worked as a freelance web contractor designing and developing WordPress websites for small businesses and non-profit organizations.
Kelly Mello is junior writer for AE Ventures, creating articles for e-publications. She graduated from the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth in 2006 with a bachelor’s degree in English: Communications & Rhetoric. She began her writing career in 2007 as editorial assistant for GateHouse Media. From 2010 to 2013, she was local editor for various Patch sites, including Norton.Patch.com.
Deborah O’Mara is the Director of Content Development for the Recurring Revenue Network, an online information and advisory services platform serving technology integration companies in physical security, IT and AV/Control. O’Mara is a thought leader in systems integration, an award-winning journalist and photographer, and frequent speaker at industry events. She has served in several key media roles in numerous, high-level B2B publications in security and electrical contracting. O’Mara is based in her hometown of Chicago, where she was born and raised.
Amelia Walsh Kern is Operational Event Coordinator at AE Ventures. Amelia started her career with AE Ventures in 2012, focusing on overall event development and production in regards to operations, registration, and exhibitor services. Amelia is a 2011 graduate of Bridgewater State University, and holds her B.S. Degree in Corporate Communications with a concentration in public relations and marketing. Prior to joining AE Ventures, Amelia worked in operational and marketing roles for Patriot Place and Victoria’s Secret.
Katie Westerduin is Guest Recruitment and Marketing Specialist for AE Ventures. Katie joined the AE Ventures team in 2012 after graduating from Stonehill College in Easton, MA, where she earned her B.S. degree in Mediated Communication with a minor in Psychology. Prior to joining AE Ventures, Katie worked in public relations and marketing roles at Ame & Lulu Accessories, RF|Binder Partners, and Dorel Juvenile Group
Virginia Williams joined AE Ventures as Director of Program Development in 2013. She works on education programs and other special projects related to ESX and the rest of AE Ventures’ portfolio. Virginia served the Security Industry Association for seven years as Director of Standards and Training and Director of Operations, and the Consumer Electronics Association for seven years as well in standards development and technical conference management. In 2013, she served as a contract project manager for the development of ESA’s School Security Guidelines. She also has ten years of experience in engineering management.
Hayley Zimmer is Account Executive at AE Ventures. Her career started at AE Ventures in 2010, filling operational roles as Audience and Program Development Coordinator and Guest Recruitment Specialist. In her current capacity she is focusing on sales for the Electronic Security Expo (ESX). Hayley attended Champlain College in Burlington, VT and also the University of Massachusetts – Dartmouth where she earned her BS Degree in Marketing. Before joining AE Ventures, Hayley has served in sales and marketing roles for Procter & Gamble and TEAM Enterprise.