Audi Club North America Announces Strategic Personnel Changes and Central Office Closure
Audi Club North America is pleased to announce key updates and changes to its management team. These changes have been made as part of an aggressive strategy to reposition this once traditional car club as a tie-that-binds for the greater Audi enthusiast community as a whole.
Last month at an in-person meeting in Dallas, significant organizational transformation decisions were made by the Audi Club’s Board of Directors (BoD). Following considerable planning, the board is now ready to announce organizational and personnel changes at the national level that will more effectively use human resources already on hand for Audi Club.
Executive Director – George Achorn
Moving to fill the position of Executive Director will be quattro Magazine editor George Achorn. George is a longtime presence in the Audi community, having been a founding partner in Vortex Media Group, including the Audi enthusiast website Fourtitude.com that he created and grew for over ten years. After that, George became a communications contractor and consultant for both Audi of America and Audi Club North America. At Audi Club, he’s worked on many projects, key amongst them the redesign and conceptualization of quattro Magazine. In addition to stepping into the role of Executive Director, he will also continue in his role as magazine Editor-in-Chief.
“One of the biggest challenges for a traditional car club is the generational shift of those enthusiasts who pioneered the club model to a more real time network of owners and enthusiasts. The advent and continued evolution of the online enthusiast experience have created both competitive challenges and ultimately unparalleled opportunity for this organization that has remained a backbone of the Audi community. I look forward to being able to play a role in Audi Club’s transformation at such a challenging and exciting moment in the organization’s long history,” said George Achorn.
Director of Operations – Joanne Angeli
Stepping up from her role as Office Manager of the National Office, Joanne Angeli is now the Director of Operations. With over 20 years as a leader and visionary in the education non-profit space, Joanne brings a high level of business acumen. Her charge is to ensure organizational effectiveness of systems, processes and policies, including initiatives geared toward operational excellence. Joanne will play a significant role in long-term planning and organizational sustainability of Audi Club.
In Joanne’s words, “These are exciting times for the club, as we work together to create an exciting future for our membership. I look forward to working with the board of directors in creating an organizational strategy that will optimize the club for growth, and to collaborating with stakeholders to creatively maneuver ways of offering new opportunities for the members of Audi Club North America.”
Director of Marketing & Communications – Bill Cho
Though he’s already been fulfilling some of these roles as an outside contractor since 2016, Bill Cho will join Audi Club as full-time Director of Marketing & Communications. Bill was a Retail Banking Officer for over 17 years and part of the team at Fourtitude for over 15 years. He has led the Audi Club’s enthusiast presence at events such as Waterfest and Big SoCal. Experience and education via communications platforms are key pillars of the Audi Club experience, so building out these elements will be key to the club’s growth and evolution. In addition to that, Bill will take on other roles in the realignment and definition of positions of the national team.
“Outreach to Audi owners who are not members of the club is very important to me. I look forward to working with the chapters on developing plans to obtain these owners through interactions at events and through social media. I’m also passionate about more chapters developing Teen/Adult Driving Clinics as part of the club’s mission to educate drivers. I’m always happy to talk to our members and help the chapters with their websites and social media questions. We are #AudiClubNA.”
Membership Manager – Sally Schliewe
The bedrock of Audi Club, Sally Schliewe will remain as a key personal contact at the Audi Club’s office. She will continue to offer the highest level of member support and satisfaction. Sally’s role also expands with the reorganization of the Audi Club personnel team. It will grow and evolve even further in the coming months as Audi Club analyzes and implements key customer relationship management (CRM) technologies as a backbone evolution implemented to improve and enrich the Audi Club member experience.
“As we move forward, I am committed to continuing the support of our members and chapters. I look forward to helping in the development of member initiatives and programs in an effort to retain and increase membership,” said Sally.
Central Office Closure
From this newly restructured team came a realization that a physical central office is not necessary. Once the team proposed this idea, the BoD subsequently voted and approved the closure. The office will remain open until June 30th, 2020. Staff based out of Wisconsin and Pennsylvania will then work 100% remotely utilizing modern cloud-based technology to run the day-to-day operation. In the years to come as Audi Club grows and needs more employees, this position will offer greater flexibility in sourcing staff or positioning any future central office closer to member population centers or Audi headquarters.
Club President Troy Sicotte stated, “Just as Audi has grown and evolved drastically over the last two decades, so must our club. What we’ve needed to offer chapters is a better demand creation engine. I’m proud to say that Audi Club North America’s new organizational structure is now capable of that by being modernized, best leveraging the team’s experience and skill to better enable its evolution alongside the Audi brand. I am confident in our ability going forward to nurture chapters and Audi fans of every ilk, from track junkies and social media influencers, to simple families with a much-loved e-Tron, Avant or Q-crossover that seek to use it to choose their own quattro adventure. This new team, with the wholehearted support of the Board of Directors and Audi, will help grow this club, touching more enthusiasts than ever. I thank the chapter leaders and members at large for their patience and trust as the board and I worked through these big changes.”
The new Executive Director presented a new comprehensive strategy in the April Chapter Leader’s call on April 7th, 2020. For more information please email [email protected]