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>> LeMond Fitness has named Mark Handfelt as President, CEO and director of the company. LeMond Fitness also announced the promotion of Bernie Boglioli to senior vice president, business development, while also naming Tim Kilgallon, president of the Allere Wellbeing Division of Alere Inc., as its latest appointment to the company's Board of Directors. Handfelt has worked with LeMond since 2002 as an outside council. Former President John Post left the company in early 2011.
>> Mike Leveque is the new COO of MyZone (www.myzonemoves.com), which made its global launch at the IHRSA show March 17, 2011. Leveque, who left Star Trac March 1 after being named president there eight months earlier as the company went through financial turmoil, sent an email March 16 late in the day noting the position was “with immediate effect.” MyZone’s slogan is “making movement measureable.”
>> Paul Toback, former CEO of Bally Total Fitness who resigned in 2006 prior to the company’s two bankruptcies and reorganizations, has co-founded Sproing, which made its debut at IHRSA. Sproing (www.sproingfitness.com) is a treadmill-sized padded running surface. Tether yourself and go for a jog in place.
>> Todd Schiessle has been named director of commercial sales for retailer HealthStyles Exercise in Colorado as of March 15. Schiessle, who has been in the industry for 15 years, is moving to the Denver area from the Chicago area where he had worked for Chicago Home Fitness.
>> Augie Nieto’s fight to find a cure for ALS continues. At the IHRSA show, the fundraiser Augie’s Quest (www.augiesquest.com) March 18 at the show drew more than 800 attendees and raised over $1.3 million in one night to combat ALS, better known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. Augie’s Quest reached its initial goal of raising $18 million to fight ALS, with a new goal set in 2009 of another $18 million ($36 million in 36 months). To date, Augie’s Quest has raised over $28 million for ALS research. Life Fitness made a special edition LifeCycle to be auctioned at the event (see photo, right, of Nieto, in a black shirt sitting in his wheelchair, looking at the bike in a glass case with Life Fitness president Chris Clawson to his left).
>> Kathy Smith has become a spokesperson and advisor to ICAA, the International Council on Active Aging. Smith will work with the 10-year-old association (www.icaa.cc) to promote healthy, active living for adults ages 50-plus.
>> Life Fitness has named Frank van de Ven as the new vice president for the company's international business unit. Van de Ven has overseen the international business in an interim capacity since April 2010. The company also announced it has signed Valcke Services BVBA as its exclusive distributor in France, a market it noted as having potential for growth.
>> FIBO, the international commercial fitness trade show in Germany (www.fibo.de), will move from its longtime home in Essen to Cologne as of 2013, the company has announced. Show owner Reed Exhibitions noted the reason for the move was an increasingly cramped show with a growing demand for space. Its contract with Cologne runs through 2022. Meanwhile the 2011 show will be April 14-17 in Essen, where management said it expected more than 560 companies from over 35 countries with 53,000 visitors – 34,000 of which are trade visitors.
>> IHRSA has announced final attendance numbers. The show March 16-19 hosted more than 10,400 industry professionals, including 7,000 convention and trade show attendees (the remaining are exhibit staff and other personnel. It also announced it had occupied 141,000 square feet of exhibit space – a number SNEWS has questioned since the last time it occupied the South Hall in San Franicisco’s Moscone Center it had 260,000 square feet, which is a gross square footage number. Click here to see a March 23, 2011, SNEWS story summarizing the event.
>> The combined Interbike and Health & Fitness Business shows have named Elayna Caldwell as marketing director. Rich Kelly has been promoted from marketing manager to brand and communications director. The 2011 show, Sept. 14-16 in Las Vegas will be the 30th annual.
>> Star Trac has signed an exclusive club transaction for over 100 club locations with fitness industry leaders Tony de Leede of Fit n Fast Australia, David Patchell Evans with Fit4Less in Canada and Mark Smith from the Cityfitness in New Zealand. Star Trac CEO Michael Bruno, who acquired the company in July 2010, said, “Teaming up with Tony, Mark and Patch, three of the most respected gentlemen in the industry, is an exciting venture that kicks this great show off with a bang. We at Star Trac are honored by this partnership.”
>> Marketing and brand strategy firm Involve Inc. has been formed as a joint venture by Big Red Rooster, Intergrate, and Craig Lerner, who was the vice president of marketing for Spri from 2005-2007. To find out more contact Lerner at email@example.com or go to www.getinvolve.com.
>> According to the SGMA, a “perfect political storm is developing in Washington, D.C.” It could result in complete eliminatation of funding for the Carol M. White Physical Education Program (PEP). Leaders in the U.S. House of Representatives are committed to reducing federal spending and the recently proposed budget does not include money for PEP. If you want to support PEP, send a letter to your local Congressman. Click here for more information.