SOURCE: American Business Media

American Business Media

March 29, 2011 12:05 ET

American Business Media Announces New Business Plan and Management Team

Enhanced Member Services Add Impact in Evolving Media Environment

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - March 29, 2011) - The American Business Media (ABM) board of directors has unanimously approved a new business plan that redefines the role of the association of b-to-b media and information companies. The plan employs a cooperative approach in which ABM will partner with industry experts and other organizations to provide greater value -- innovative thought leadership and a new suite of practical solutions -- to members, who are transforming and expanding their business models in the Internet era.

ABM is also pleased to announce a new senior management team to lead the execution of the association's new strategy. 

The business plan resulted from a major outreach program, during which ABM President and CEO Clark Pettit met with 150 member executives to learn about their challenges and opportunities as well as their expectations of ABM. Member input shaped a comprehensive list of new products and services, which will be unveiled over coming months. They include:

  • Industry research and actionable business metrics
  • Education and training programs around various new business models and solutions, and how to execute on them
  • Increased networking opportunities and focused leadership groups
  • More robust committees and councils focused on tangible deliverables and professional development
  • New events, including regional programs and events in cooperation with other organizations and experts, focused on driving new b-to-b business models

ABM's new senior management team was selected for their knowledge of the industry and ability to help focus ABM's services on both strategic new directions and pragmatic, implementable solutions. Collectively, this team will work directly with Pettit to continually refine, drive and execute the new business plan.

Michael Burns, VP, Events, will oversee ABM's entire events program, including both face-to-face and online events as well as new education and training programs. He will help develop strategic direction; coordinate with ABM's committees and councils to maximize impact; and develop and manage partnerships with other organizations.

Burns is an accomplished communications strategist and event producer with more than 15 years of experience as an advisor to C-level executives in all areas of communications and event production. He most recently worked as a communications consultant at Morgan Stanley, and prior to that, served as Director of Executive Meetings and Events at American Express.

Claudia Flowers, VP, Recruitment & Retention, will manage the department that drives outreach to current and potential members across b-to-b media and related industries. Under Flowers' direction, a new member integration program will introduce members to products and services, and will monitor interaction and engagement to maximize member benefits.

Flowers is a results-oriented executive with experience launching companies into new markets, increasing customer bases and creating new revenue streams through product development, licenses, partnerships and mergers & acquisitions. She is a veteran of the b-to-b industry, having held senior-level positions at The McGraw-Hill Companies, Thomson Reuters and Wolters Kluwer Health. Most recently, she served as VP of Client Solutions at Outsell Inc. and EVP of Corporate Development for Questex Media Group.

Marie Griffin, VP, Content & Programming, will oversee the department that defines all content, programming and subject matter experts across ABM's initiatives in print, in-person and online, including events, education and training programs, research, metrics and other information and communication vehicles, such as social media.

Griffin has spent more than 20 years in the b-to-b media as a manager, editor and writer. She held top editorial positions at several b-to-b media brands, including Lebhar-Friedman's Drug Store News, where she served as Editor-in-Chief and Editor/Associate Publisher. Griffin brings experience in management, strategic planning, new business development, conference planning and trade relations. Most recently, Griffin served as Contributing Editor specializing in e-media for BtoB Media Business, published by Crain Communications.

Todd Hittle helped to build the new management team and will continue as ABM's General Manager and Chief Financial Officer, overseeing ABM's operations and financial activity. He will partner with Pettit on the execution of the overall business plan and will continue to represent member interests in government affairs. Hittle will also tap into his past b-to-b media experience to facilitate industry problem-solving through member outreach and ABM committees and councils. 

Prior to joining ABM, Hittle spent more than 15 years in the b-to-b industry, most recently serving as VP and Group Publisher at Nielsen Business Media and as COO at The Hollywood Reporter.

"The media industry, including b-to-b media, is at a critical juncture in supporting the evolving information and marketing needs of markets served. The ABM board recruited Clark Pettit as ABM's new President and CEO because of his extensive background in building businesses, managing new products and technology, and driving significant industry change across numerous media, including the music, motion picture and cable industries," said ABM Chairman Charles McCurdy, CEO, Apprise Media LLC. "We are especially excited by his insight, drive and desire to see a more constructive transformation in the b-to-b industry than has happened in other media industries; ABM's new business plan and management team are a manifestation of that desire." 

ABM's Annual Conference is the association's first major event in line with its new business plan. Taking place May 1-4 in Austin, TX, the executive-level conference will feature a deep dive into marketing services as a key industry growth opportunity. Visit for more information.

Founded in 1906, American Business Media is positioned at the center of the global b-to-b ecosystem. As the only association focused on the integrated b-to-b media model -- which includes print publications, events, digital media and business information -- ABM delivers intelligence to industry professionals worldwide, including Madison Avenue, Wall Street and the Beltway. ABM's 200-plus member companies reach an audience of more than 100 million professionals and represent nearly 6,000 print and online titles and over 1,000 trade shows, with well over $20 billion in annual revenues. For more information, visit

Contact Information

  • Contact:
    Kate Patton
    Manager, Marketing & Communications
    American Business Media
    Email Contact