CURVE, Pa. - The Altoona Curve, Double-A Affiliate of the Pittsburgh Pirates, announced five new additions to their front office staff on Tuesday, as well as other role changes ahead of the upcoming baseball season.
The new staff additions in the groundskeeping, creative services, business development, ticket sales and communications departments take effect heading into the 20th Season of Altoona Curve Baseball, presented by Stuckey Subaru.
Chris Mason joins the Curve as Head Groundskeeper for his eighth season in baseball after spending the last three years in the same role with the West Virginia Power (Single-A, Pittsburgh Pirates). A native of Eastlake, Ohio, Mason began his career in 2011 and 2012 as an assistant groundskeeper with the Lake County Captains (Single-A, Cleveland Indians). He was the Head Groundskeeper for the Clinton LumberKings (Single-A, Seattle Mariners) in 2013 before returning to Ohio in 2014 as the Head Groundskeeper/Assistant Director of Stadium Operations for the Mahoning Valley Scrappers (Short-Season Single-A, Cleveland Indians), where he was named the New York-Penn League's Sports Turf Manager of the Year.
"We are fortunate to bring in someone like Chris to Curve, PA," Curve General Manager Derek Martin said. "His resume speaks for itself and have the utmost confidence in him that we will be providing a great playing surface for our team, especially with the sod that was replaced this off-season. Chris has worked in the Pirates minor league system the last several years and already has a lot of good relationships with our current coaching staff."
David Gallagher is now the Curve's Director of Creative Services after spending the 2017 season with the team as a production intern. Gallagher, a native of Saxonburg, Pa., is a 2018 alumnus of Indiana University of Pennsylvania.
"David showed us a lot in 2017 when he interned in the production room," Martin said. "It was quickly evident that he has a lot of talent and his creativity is off the charts. I am excited to see how he creates and re-creates the atmosphere at PNG Field. David has a very important position as he is the one that manages the sights and sounds for our fans when they come to a game. I love being able to promote from within the organization and Gallagher definitely deserved it."
Jade Giantini joins the Curve's staff as Manager of Partnership Services after spending the 2017 season as an front office intern. A native of Duncannon, Pa., Giantini is a 2017 alumna of York College of Pennsylvania and worked on the game day staff of the Harrisburg Senators (Double-A, Washington Nationals) in 2015 and 2016.
"Jade is another one of the class of 2017 interns," Martin said. "From day one, Jade set herself apart as she always spoke up, brought new ideas to the table, always volunteered and worked very well with the staff. Her work ethic impressed me and I knew she would be a valuable asset to the organization."
Briana Hornung comes on board with the Curve as a Ticket Sales Manager after spending the 2017 season as a marketing assistant with the West Virginia Power (Single-A, Pittsburgh Pirates). Hornung is a native of Hollidaysburg, Pa. and a 2016 alumna of Penn State University.
"We were looking to add an additional ticket sales person for the 2018 season, and Briana came highly recommended," Martin said. "I loved the fact that she was born and raised in Hollidaysburg. She is a hard worker and has a passion for her job and it shows. Briana has made an immediate impact in our ticket department. I just need to get her some bowling lessons from what I saw in our small bowling league."
Garett Mansfield joins the Curve as the Communications & Broadcasting Assistant. A native of Defiance, Ohio, Mansfield is a 2015 graduate of Bowling Green State University and spent the 2017 season as the Media Relations & Marketing Manager and play-by-play broadcaster for the Beloit Snappers (Single-A, Oakland Athletics). He worked as the Broadcast & Media Relations Assistant for the El Paso Chihuahuas (Triple-A, San Diego Padres) during the 2016 season and spent two previous years as the Director of Broadcasting & Media Relations for the Chugiak-Eagle River Chinooks of the Alaska Baseball League.
Mansfield will join Trey Wilson and Nate Bowen on the Curve Radio Network broadcast team this season. He replaces Max Gun, who moved on to become the voice of the Lynchburg Hillcats (A-Adv., Cleveland Indians).
"We're excited to have Garett join our broadcast team and communications staff this season," said Wilson, the Curve's Director of Communications & Broadcasting. "He brings several years of valuable experience from some great organizations, and we look forward to the contributions he will be making with Altoona this year on and off the airwaves."
Bowen, who has been with the Curve since 2013, is now the club's Director of Ticketing. Corey Homan, who enters his tenth season with the Curve's front office, is now the Director of Corporate Partnerships.
Isaiah Arpino is now the Director of Entertainment & Branding. 2018 will be his tenth season with the Curve and his fourth in a full-time role. Mike Kessling, entering his fourth season with the front office, is now the Director of Marketing, Promotions & Special Events.
"I can't say enough about Nate, Corey, Isaiah and Mike," Martin said. "They truly have a passion for what they do and they 'live it' every day. The promotions were much deserved and we are fortunate to have them in Curve, PA."
The 20th Season of Altoona Curve Baseball, presented by Stuckey Subaru, opens on April 5 at Peoples Natural Gas Field. Season Tickets, Mini Plans and Flex Books are on sale now online at AltoonaCurve.com, by phone at 877.99.CURVE or in person at the PNG Field offices.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.