As Yamaha Commercial Audio Systems, Inc. (YCAS) approaches its first anniversary the company announces recent staff appointments and promotions.

Marc Lopez has been named marketing manager and will focus his efforts on the North American marketplace in product planning and strategic marketing. He will serve as interface to Yamaha Corporation Japan, as well as oversee the advertising and public relations efforts of the company. Lopez began his career at Yamaha nearly 10 years ago initially as an applications specialist for the Yamaha 02R and 03D digital mixers and later as software product manager for the Yamaha PM1D, DM2000/1000, DME systems and network products. Prior to joining Yamaha, he was a freelance post-production and sound engineer for television and film.

Two US research and development managers have been appointed. Prior to joining Yamaha, David Hatmaker served 19 years as technical director for Disneyland Resort Entertainment Productions in Anaheim, CA, where he was responsible for audio design, implementation, and maintenance throughout two theme parks and three hotels. Hatmaker began his career by forming Trinity Sound Works and has worked as an audio engineer for Knott’s Berry Farm, Crystal Cathedral, as well as a freelance mixer and system designer for various industrial events and church installations.

Chris Taylor, who for nearly four years served as district manager responsible for sales of Yamaha commercial audio products for the southeastern states, assumes the second R&D position. Taylor spent close to 25 years as FOH engineer working through Clair Brothers for the likes of Janet Jackson, Michael Jackson, Barbra Streisand, Joe Cocker, David Foster, Michael W. Smith, and 21 years in support of Amy Grant tours. In their new positions, Hatmaker and Taylor will be responsible for determining future commercial audio product development that will better serve the diverse needs of the market.

Chris Hinson will assume the district manager position previously occupied by Taylor and will be responsible for the southeastern sales territory with the exception of Georgia and Florida. Hinson, who joined Yamaha in 2003 as East Coast applications specialist, began his career in professional audio in Nashville selling analog and digital recording products, and later worked for Panasonic as eastern regional product specialist for the WR-DA7 digital mixer.

Lon Brannies, a recognized industry veteran with over 35 years of professional audio experience in both the contracting and manufacturing sectors, has accepted the position of consultant and AFC marketing manager. Brannies, who will facilitate all AFC sales and marketing efforts, has been with Yamaha since 1984 most recently as district manager. For 15 years prior to joining Yamaha, he was a sound and electronic systems contractor.

“All of these gentlemen have extensive experience in the commercial audio field and with Yamaha, and will be strong assets for our future YCAS business development,” states Larry Italia, vice president/general manager, Yamaha Commercial Audio Systems, Inc. “With their assistance, we will further strengthen our growth while better servicing our dealers, contractors, consultants, sound designers and end users.”

As part of the company’s expansion, two support personnel have been added to the headquarters staff in Buena Park, CA in support of the Canadian commercial audio operation. Christine Marceau, who hails from Quebec and held positions at both Panasonic and Toshiba in Toronto, has been appointed senior credit manager. Marceau brings with her a diverse background in finance and will be responsible for customer financial services for the Canadian market. Marianna Pellissier has been hired as a customer service associate. She spent eight years in France and taught English as a second language to French executives. In her new position, Pellissier will ensure that customers in Canada receive high priority responses to requests regarding Yamaha commercial audio products and services.

“Having a highly qualified, dedicated French-speaking staff enables us to better communicate from our US offices directly to our Canadian customer base which will no doubt expedite matters regarding sales and service of our products,” adds Italia.