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2018 West Coast POP Winners




Shop! Environments Association named new officers and elected five new members to join the Board of Directors at its annual meeting in New Orleans. The Shop! Board of Directors is comprised of members who volunteer their time to provide leadership on the strategic direction and management of the association.


Joel Katterhagen, president at B&N Industries, has assumed the role of Chair after serving as Vice Chair of the Board. Prior to joining B&N in 2018, Katterhagen was president of Synsor Corporation from 2012-2017. He spent nine years at Leggett & Platt as executive vice president of sales and marketing. He has also held executive positions with Hamilton Fixture and Ross Display. Katterhagen, a Board member since 2011, has more than 25 years of sales management experience in manufacturing and the fixture industry.

Bruce Barteldt Jr. AIA, LEED BD&C, partner/global practice leader at Little in Charlotte, was named Vice Chair. Barteldt leads all retail activity for Little, with responsibility for Brand Experience Strategy and Design, Branded Graphics and Program Implementation services. The 30-year industry veteran is frequently a featured presenter at national and international industry conferences, and he has served as a judge for retail design awards programs. A Shop! Board member since 2015 when Shop! was formed, Barteldt is currently a member of the design:retail editorial board and is the Creative Council Board Liaison for Shop!.

Mike Schliesmann, senior vice president – business unit manager at Great Northern Instore, has become Treasurer. With more than 38 years of experience in the POP and retail display industry, Schliesmann’s belief in the growth and promotion of the industry has propelled him to be active in industry trade groups throughout his career. He is a past Board Member, past Chairman and past Trustee of the FTA and FFTA, he served as a past POPAI Board Member, and has been a presenter at many industry events over the years for ISM, POPAI, FTA, TAPPI, UWM and other groups.


Ellen Johnson is executive vice president of Commercial Development for Noa Brands. Her deep understanding of retail strategy and merchandising trends, along with her creative vision, has created opportunities with Target, Kate Spade, Disney, Ann Taylor and New Balance. Her career in visual began at Cies Sexton, a photographic and digital lab responsible for innovating photographic flooring to create visual decor. She then spent several years at Alu and Look, two well-respected modular fixture companies before joining Noa Brands 10 years ago.

John Jaffke, president and co-founder of DJ Jaffke Consulting, has more than 35 years of experience in the food production and food/beverage industries. Throughout his career, Jaffke has held leadership positions at The Kraft Heinz Company, Kraft Foods Group, Oscar Mayer Foods Corp., and Frito Lay. He has served on the Board of Sun Prairie (WI) School Board and on the POPAI Board, and he was named a “Who’s Who in Shopper Marketing” by the Path to Purchase Institute from 2011-2017. Jaffke is CBE Board Certified in M&A, Long-Term Growth, Strategic Communications, and Audit.

Lynn Knutson is director of Business Development at RCS Innovations based in Milwaukee, Wis. With more than 20 years of experience working in Global Retail Development with a Fortune 500 company, Knutson is skilled in Sales, Retail, Art Direction, Management, and Visual Merchandising. She also is adept at defining strategies and setting direction, as well as leading cross-functional teams to transform the customer experience at retail through integrated technology and design.

Steve Varon is the CEO for Crown Metal Manufacturing Company, which manufactures store fixture hardware, retail displays, and custom metal in Elmhurst, Ill. Varon has been with Crown Metal since 1987. Prior to joining the company, he worked at Frito-Lay from 1986 to 1987. Steve has served as the chair of A.R.E.’s Manufacturing Seminar committee, and was Treasurer on the A.R.E. Board in 2015.

Rachel Zsembery, AIA, LEED AP BD+C, is vice president at Bergmeyer Associates, based in Boston. She directs design and strategy teams that research, develop and implement experience-rich consumer environments. A dynamic and creative leader, Zsembery serves on the Bergmeyer Associates Board of Directors. She also is a member of the VMSD Editorial Advisory Board, the Boston Society of Architects’ Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Task Force, and the Shop! Industry Future Council.


The following outgoing directors have served their full terms: Bob Rosean, TJ Hale Co.; Denis Gibney, Frito Lay Inc.; Jerry Fox, Bish Creative Display; David Plante, Target Stores Inc.; and Dan Evans, Goldsmith.

“I want to thank the outgoing board members for their time and dedication to advancing our association as we strive to build a world-class global organization,” said Todd Dittman, Shop! Executive Director. “We also welcome our new directors, who bring greater diversity to our board. It is important that our association represents voices from women in our industry as well as from across our member categories. We look forward to working with everyone to achieve our goals.”

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