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12/14/2009 2:37 PM ET
Experienced sports executive Brown bolsters' QC front office

The Quad Cities River Bandits have a new Executive Director of Corporate Partnerships - and he is no stranger to the Quad Cities. Shawn Brown, most recently the Vice President/General Manager of the Arena Football League 2's Quad City Steamwheelers, has joined the River Bandits and began working in the front office on December 7.

"We're very excited to add Shawn to our front office," said owner Dave Heller. "He is exactly what we have been looking for - he has a proven track record of success working in minor league sports, he is very familiar with and knowledgeable about the Quad Cities and loves it here, and he is a well-respected and highly-regarded member of the business community. Shawn is only going to help strengthen the River Bandits as we continue to grow."

Already well-known in the Quad Cities community, Brown spent the last eight years working with the Steamwheelers. After joining them in 2002 as the Vice President of Sales and Marketing, he was promoted to General Manager prior to the 2007 season. Following financial issues that led to a difficult conclusion to the 2009 football season, Brown's employment with the Steamwheelers ended after their last game on July 18.

Brown's responsibilities with the River Bandits will include an emphasis on corporate marketing and overseeing the organization's ticket and group sales efforts.

"I'm pumped up," said Brown. "I'm excited to be a part of the franchise after leaving the sports industry a few months ago. I was a little beat up after the football season, but after spending some time with Kirk Goodman and Dave Heller I got excited again about working in sports in general and with the Bandits in particular. I'm also looking forward to focusing on sponsorships and ticket sales and building on the many relationships and friendships I have here in the Quad Cities."

Prior to moving to the Quad Cities, the native of Burlington graduated from the University of Iowa with a B.A. in Sports, Health and Leisure Studies and spent three years as the Director of Corporate Sales with the Fort Wayne Fury of the Continental Basketball Association. He currently resides in Bettendorf with his wife Ashley, two-year-old son William, four-month-old son Justin, and the family dog, Bentley.

"We have always had a lot of respect for the job that Shawn did in a difficult situation with the Steamwheelers," said River Bandits' Vice President and General Manager Kirk Goodman. "After the football season ended he expressed an interest in getting involved with the River Bandits and we were open to that from the start. The more we discussed it and the more he talked about his philosophy of putting the interests of our fans and sponsors first, the more it became clear that this is a perfect fit."

In other news related to the River Bandits front office staff, Director of Broadcasting and Media Relations Ben Chiswick will be leaving the team after spending five seasons with the club. He will be replaced by Tommy Thrall, who most recently served as Director of Broadcasting and Communications for the Myrtle Beach Pelicans of the Carolina League.

UP NEXT: Modern Woodmen Park is staying busy as a special events venue over the off-season, providing the perfect atmosphere for holiday parties, corporate functions and more. Meanwhile, the 2010 baseball schedule has been released and fans can already put down a deposit on season ticket and mini-plan packages - including the brand new Super Seven Plan - right now by calling (563) 3-BANDIT.

ABOUT THE BANDITS: The Quad Cities River Bandits set a new post-renovation mark for single-season attendance in 2009, as 236,401 fans passed through the turnstiles for an average of 3,694 fans per game. Both figures marked the highest since 1995, while the average attendance was the third highest in franchise history and the total attendance was the fifth highest all-time. The total attendance was up 14 percent over the 2008 season, continuing a 59 percent attendance increase since Main St. Iowa purchased the franchise following the 2007 season. Ticket sales, concessions, merchandise sales, sponsorships and even Kids' Zone revenues were all up over 2008, which was one of the team's best in history! Season ticket deposits for 2010 are already being taken!