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Social Media Club Global Board of Directors

The business and affairs of Social Media Club are managed and controlled by an interim board of directors consisting of a broad range of Social Media Professionals that span non profit, technology and education markets: 

Ali  headshotAli Sabkar - New Chapter Management Director
Twitter: @AliSABKAR Linkedin: Ali Sabkar 
Email: ali at

Ali Sabkar is the founder and President of the Bahrain Chapter of Social Media Club. He is the Founder of the largest virtual Marketing Network for individuals and organizations involved in Marketing in Bahrain and GCC with a community of over 4,000 members. He has over 15 years of experience in marketing, media, PR, branding and production. Ali founded an e-commerce company leading the development of more than 300 corporate websites in Bahrain, Kuwait and KSA. He established the Social Media Blog; leading +60 International & Regional Social Media Experts publishing digital media latest trends, news & articles.

He is the co-author of the book “WHY MARKETING Middle East.” Ali is very active in NGOs as the co-founder of Bahrain Society for Giftedness & Creativity (BSGC), a Board Director for 3 years at Bahrain Internet Society (BIS) and a member of Bahrain Society for Strategic Planning (BSSP).

Anders headshotAnders Abrahamsson - International Web Editorial
Twitter: @Sliceonline Linkedin: Anders Abrahamsson 
Email: anders at

Anders Abrahamsson founded the first formal Social Media Club Chapter in Sweden – SMC Östergötland in 2009 and served as a secretary of the board of Social Media Club - Chapter Support Association of Sweden. For the past three years, Anders has been part of the global Social Media Club Editorial Team and was one of the founding team members, He also authored an explorative article series on a society in profound transition – #TheFlowSociety (link: These editorial pieces are forming the base of an upcoming book “Understanding Flow Society – Where are we heading? Facilitating a Conversation about a Society in Profound Transition.” He is exploring these applied concepts through his startup InFluxum in the role of Empowerment Coach, primarily focusing on startups.

His goal in general is to give even more leverage to forces moving us to a full fledged Flow Society – a vision of an Open World, a “world re:loved.” In the position of Programming/Curation Director, he has built a team of global curators creating an editorial stream named Social Web Global Observations - #SocWebGlobalObs. He also views it as important to provide educational material in support for those who want to “share what they got”. His life is overall devoted to his family, practicing japanese budo in the name of aikido, DJing, and entrepreneurship for sustainability – ‘sustainopreneurship’. Follow Anders Abrahamsson at – his Personal Hub.

Ari headshotAri Herzog - Editorial Director
Twitter: @AriHerzog Linkedin: Ari Herzog 
Email: ari at

Ari Herzog manages a team of 30+ global authors who submit daily posts to our blog. He is the past president of the Boston chapter of Social Media Club. He is the founder of Social Media Breakfast North Shore and created a LinkedIn group promoting social media strategies with over 8,500 members. He spent the past four years teaching digital marketing to MBA students and working adults; and managing online communities for a mix of nonprofits, small companies, and a Fortune 500 firm. Ari explores digital media on his blog at and also writes for SteamFeed and the Huffington Post.

Armed with a Masters in Public Administration from Suffolk University and senior management experience in state and local government, Ari works part-time as the marketing manager for a local restaurant and is an elected city councilor in Newburyport, Massachusetts.

Basil headshotBasil Puglisi - Web Site Management & Professional Development
@BasilPuglisi  LinkedIn: Basil C. Puglisi
Email: basil at

Basil Puglisi is a self-motivated and resourceful digital professional with ability to develop new business, increase public awareness, maintain existing relationships and drive profitable sales growth. Basil began his exploration of the “Digital Age” with a philosophy of “Read, Write & Share”. The content, which was based around digital and social media became his initial source for professional development.

Through his company Digital Ethos, he has teamed with Google, Microsoft, AOL, Constant Contact and others in his role as a Partner Agency. Basil has been a moderator for panels that include professionals from NBC News, Crain’s Communications, BQE Media, Dragon Search Marketing, Klout, StumbleUpon and also a featured Speaker or Presenter for events like Social Media Week, NYXPO, NYBizExpo, TradeBrooklyn, #140Conf and even a Guest Lecturer for Dowling College, Stony Brook University and Suffolk County Community College.

Golden headshotGolden Ashby - Interim Executive Director
Twitter: @GoldenAshby  Linkedin: Golden Ashby
Email: golden at

Golden is the CEO/Social Media Director of Golden Opps (GO). He leads GO teams in managing new media, online marketing, public relations, web technology, customer service, drive engagement, develop communities, establish measurements, educate employees and direct cutting edge social media campaigns and strategies from start to finish for some of the best brands in the world. He lives and breaths social media in both his professional and personal life and loves helping other do the same.

Golden is a seasoned social media marketing professional with over thirteen years experience in defining/executing strategies that influence repeatable campaigns in social media, public relations, web technologies, market research, creative writing, and execution of online and offline marketing strategies to drive adoption for over fifteen major corporations. Including but not limited to Seagate Technology, Union Bank, VISA, H&R Block, the American Marketing Association, Capital Records and the San Francisco Giants. He holds an MBA from San Francisco State University and a Bachelors of Science in Marketing from Portland State University.

Erik headshotErik Granning - Interim Treasurer
Twitter: @egranning  LinkedIn: Erik Granning 
Email: erik at

Erik Granning has served as the Treasurer for the Detroit chapter of Social Media Club for two years. Erik is a digital advertising professional at iProspect in Detroit, Michigan were he is on the Data & Insights Team for General Motors global. Before joining iProspect, Erik managed national paid search accounts for Doner, for such clients as The UPS Store, Lexmark International, and American Kennel Club.

In December of 2010, he founded, a social media events promotion site. A year later was acquired through a merger with The Awesome Mitten where he volunteers as the Events Promotion Director.

Kat headshotKat Mandelstein - Communications Director
Twitter: @katmandelstein  Linkedin: Kat Mandelstein 
Email: kat at

Kat Mandelstein has served on the global board of directors since 2011 and is the past President of the Austin Chapter of Social Media Club after serving on the board for several years in various roles. She also is the host of #SMCBooks global virtual book club for Social Media Club. Kat recently joined PwC Advisory through the acquisition of Ant’s Eye View where she leads teams consulting with some of the most recognizable brands in the world on their digital and social business strategies. Previously, Kat spent over fourteen years at IBM in numerous global Executive and leadership roles including leading demand programs, web and events for Social Business, IBM Collaboration Solutions, Rational Software, IBM developerWorks, a community for developers working with open standards and IBM solutions, and IBM alphaWorks giving the world early access to technologies from IBM Research.

In the spring of 2011, Kat served on the IBM Executive Corporate Service Corps in Rio de Jainero. Before joining IBM, Kat managed one of the earliest successful retail Web sites, and worked at several advertising agencies as a copywriter and Account Executive early in her career. Kat is a frequent conference and Webcast speaker, has been featured in numerous global and national publications and has been a regular contributor to BtoB Magazine’s BtoBlog and the Austinot, She holds a B.S. in Advertising with Minor in Marketing from the University of Texas at Austin and a Global Leadership MBA from the University of Texas at Dallas.

Kemp headshotKemp Edmonds - Partnerships & Sponsorships
Twitter: @KempEdmonds  LinkedIn: Kemp Edmonds 
Email: kemp at

Kemp Edmonds works for Vancouver-based HootSuite as a Sales Engineer. HootSuite is the world’s leading social media management system. Kemp was inspired to pursue a career in emerging online media while in the classroom at the British Columbia Institute of Technology where he then worked in Marketing and went on to create and teach the Institute’s first social media courses.

Kemp also provides consulting, training and recruitment services to aid organizations. His passion for people, technology and education enables his work. Through his speaking and appearances in the media, Kemp discusses the politics of social networks, online communications, the law and digital culture. He can also be found blogging on, chopping wood on small islands in the Howe Sound and documenting life.

Ronnie headshotRonnie Ledesma - Professional Chapter Management
Twitter: @RonnieLedesma  Linkedin: Ronnie Ledesma 
Email: ronnie at

Ronnie Ledesma founded the Sacramento chapter of Social Media Club in 2009. He has applied his marketing and brand skill on behalf of more than 150 community banking locations of a Fortune 500 financial institution. With his trademark creativity and zest for life, he championed a golden decade of innovation and team spirit in the company's marketing department. In 2009, Ronnie pioneered the use of social software at the bank. After a successful ride on the Stagecoach, Ronnie retired for a year, explored Brazil, learned Brazilian Portuguese, and visited the Costa Rican rainforest.

In 2010, following a year of international escapades, Ronnie founded his third micro business, GooTank Marketing. GooTank Marketing serves the social and traditional marketing needs of the micro business community. Ronnie has grown his client base to capacity by means of referrals only. He currently serves as the Marketing Director for TEDxSacramento and Membership Director for Social Media Club, Sacramento.

Sarah headshotSarah Eggers - Secretary
Twitter: @hidama  Linkedin: Sara Eggers 
Email: sarah at

Sarah Eggers currently serves as the Secretary-Treasurer for the Kansas City chapter of Social Media Club, which won the Chapter of the Year award in 2012. Sarah is a digital marketer and data analysis enthusiast with experience working for small businesses and 501c6 non profit associations. Her personal goal is changing the marketing industry by focusing on client/customer service.

Outside of her professional life she is a world traveler who is fascinated with graffiti and loves to listen to LPs while sipping a dirty chai latte. After visiting Japan, Hong Kong, and mainland China, Sarah's next big trip will be to Mykonos and Santorini.

Serena headshotSerena Ehrlich - Membership Co-Chair
Twitter: @Serena  Linkedin: Serena Ehrlich 
Email: serena at

Serena Ehrlich serves on three board of directors, including being a founding member of the global Social Media Club board, she is past president of the Los Angeles chapter of Social Media Club and has served on the board in several roles over the years, and she serves on the board of the National Investor Relations Institutes' Los Angeles chapter. Over the last 20 years, Serena has worked closely with public and private companies providing guidance on IR/PR and overall consumer behavior relations trends. She has implemented local, national and international social/mobile marketing campaigns for a wide range of company and brands including Kraft, Kohl's, Avon, Mattel, Mogreet and more.

Serena started her career in advertising where she developed an understanding of branding from a large-scale perspective, but it was her 14 years in the newswire industry that placed her squarely at the forefront of a technical, sociological and influential revolution changing the face of customer communications. In 1994, Serena was part of a small team who introduced the communications industry to the Internet via a series of first-ever conferences, and her love of technology hasn’t stopped since. A ’87 graduate of Brandeis University with a B.A in History, Serena was recently named as one of the 2013 Top 25 Women in Mobile to Watch by Mobile Marketer.

Tara headshotTara Coomins - Membership Co-Chair
Twitter: @taracoomans Linkedin: Tara Coomins 
Email: tara at

Tara Coomans served two terms as the first elected president of the Hawaii Chapter of Social Media Club and remains active on the Board of Directors. Tara is a professional communications and marketing strategist. She specializes in helping companies identify and integrate today’s digital marketing and communication strategies into marketing, PR and customer service. By always being on the cutting edge of creative solutions for today’s marketing challenges, Tara has earned her title as Head Brainstormer of Akamai Marketing. Best known for as a leader in the strategic use of social media in Hawaii, Tara has developed a number of proprietary analytical tools to help evaluate social media ROI for her clients and colleagues.

Tara also teaches at Pacific New Media part of the University of Hawaii and advises on their social media certificate program. She also develops custom training programs for organizations based on their needs and regularly speaks at local organizations about social media and marketing. As a voice in social media thought leadership, Tara also frequently speaks on social media topics including social ROI, social listening, social business and strategic approaches to social media for businesses and nonprofits. She also serves as the communication chair for Hawaii Innovation Alliance, and a key communication volunteer for Code for America and TedX Honolulu. Many of Tara’s ideas and solutions can be discussed on her blog, Akamai Marketing

Advisory Board:

Chris Heuer, Co-Founder 
Twitter: @ChrisHeuer Linkedin: Chris Heuer

Chris Heuer has been engaged in interactive communications since 1993, and launched his first agency, Guru Communications, out of South Beach, Florida in 1994. Over the years he has helped numerous startups with go-to market strategies, product design, web site development, online marketing campaigns, ecommerce and what is now widely referred to as Social Media.

Seeing similarities between the rise of the Web as a vital communications technology and the current rise of Social Media, Chris formed Social Media Club in March, 2006 to help more people understand the greater significance of what it means to be social and how media production/consumption has changed. To this end, Social Media Club is promoting media literacy, encouraging the sharing of lessons learned, promoting industry standards such as Creative Commons and discussing questions of ethics.

In 2011, Chris joined Deloitte as a Specialist Leader in the Social Business practice where he works with clients and partners about key issues with regards to social business for market facing issues, enterprise 2.0, innovation and holistic business strategy. In addition to his direct endeavors, he serves as an advisory board member for Buzzlogic and My6Sense. He is a frequent speaker, workshop leader and a trained facilitator and has organized numerous unconferences for the community and private organizations of all sizes. In 2013, Chris re-launched AdHocnium and recently launched Alynd, a social software company. 

Kristie Wells, Co-Founder 
Twitter: @KristieWells Linkedin: Kristie Wells

Kristie is Co-Founder of Social Media Club, and is the Director of Global Social Media and Customer Engagement for Over the last 25 years, Kristie has helped organizations understand, engage and support their customers to strengthen their brand, improve their products and create better experiences for all stakeholders, internally and externally.

Kristie’s professional life has been spent in and around technology companies with an emphasis on bridging the gap between technology and people. A versatile generalist, Kristie has worked as a senior-level Marketing Executive, Community Manager and Customer Advocate, most recently with Swipp, Joyent and Ribbit (acquired by British Telecom). While her roles and titles have changed over time, her passion to connect people, ideas and resources remains at the core of all she does. You can find more information on Kristie at

Ben Smith
Twitter: @BenASmith  Linkedin: Ben A. Smith

Ben Smith founded the Lawrence, Kansas, chapter of the Social Media Club and is also an active member of the Kansas City chapter. Ben serves as Principal at social business agency Social: IRL, and as Social Media Director at Callahan Creek, a full service marketing agency working with national and regional specialty brands. He works with brands across the U.S. to integrate social media in to all aspects of their daily operations through strategic goals-first based solutions.

Ben also hosts Social: IRL’s national conference series, working with some of the most respected names in the industry to provide in-depth training and education in a format that goes well beyond typical keynote presentations. He regularly speaks on social media related topics to national and regional audiences, and guest lectures to
journalism and communications students at area colleges and universities.

United States
Costa Rica
Czech Republic
Dominican Republic
El Salvador
Isle of Man
New Zealand
Saudi Arabia
South Africa
South Korea
Sri Lanka
United Arab Emirates
United Kingdom