The 25th season of baseball at ARM & HAMMER Park is right around the corner and the Thunder, presented by NJM Insurance, are pleased to welcome nine members of the organization to new positions for the 2018 season and beyond.
A lifelong resident of Hamilton Square, NJ, Lydia Rios has been promoted to VP, Marketing & Sponsorships. Rios joined the Thunder prior to the 2015 season and has overseen substantial increases in sponsorship revenue in three seasons leading the department.
"Lydia has been a fantastic addition to our team," said Thunder GM/COO Jeff Hurley. "Her passion and energy for life is infectious to our entire staff. Her always sunny attitude inspires every person on our staff from full-time employees to assistants to interns to game day staff to smile and have fun while working here. Her previous experience working in the marketplace has made her an indispensable leader in our sales efforts."
Within the Corporate Sales Department, Vince Marcucci has been promoted to Director, Corporate & Community Affairs. Marcucci joined the Thunder prior to the 2015 season as a Ticket Sales Account Representative and has since taken the reigns of the team's Community Affairs efforts and sits as the Executive Director of Grand Slam We Care, the team's 501(c)3 non-profit organization. Marcucci is a member of the Princeton Mercer Regional Convention and Visitor Bureau's Steering Committee, serves as the Vice-Chair of the Princeton Regional Chamber of Commerce Young Professionals, a member of the Lower Bucks County Chamber of Commerce Young Professionals Committee and serves on the Board of Directors for Advancing Opportunities. Marcucci was honored by the Princeton Regional Chamber of Commerce as a Champion for Business on October 5, 2017.
In the Creative Services department, the Thunder are pleased to welcome Deanna Lugo and Dylan DeSimine to new positions for the 2018 season. Lugo joined the team prior to the 2016 season as Production Manager and was promoted to Director, Creative Services in July of 2017. As Director, Lugo oversees all production and creative elements of the Thunder entertainment experience as well as the creation of all internal and external marketing materials for the organization. Originally from Ocean City, NJ, Lugo holds a bachelor's degree in Radio/Film/TV from Rowan University. Prior to joining the Thunder, Lugo spent time working for NFL Films in their camera department and NBC Sports Philadelphia as a Studio Technician.
DeSimine joins the Thunder after spending the 2017 season with the Wilmington Blue Rocks (Kansas City Royals, Advanced-A) as Web & Creative Services Assistant and Producer of the Rocks Report, a biweekly show about the team. DeSimine graduated from Rowan University with a Film & Broadcasting degree in 2016, has spent time working with the Production Department at the Philadelphia Eagles and can work a Star Wars reference into almost any coversation he takes part in.
The Thunder are pleased to welcome Jason Smith as Head Groundskeeper after one season working with the Baltimore Orioles Groundscrew. While with the Orioles, Smith worked under former Thunder Groundskeeper, Nicole Sherry, and will embark on his ninth season working in turf management. Smith was raised in Ames, Iowa and graduated from O'Gorman High School in 2004 (Sioux Falls, SD). While in college at the University of Northern Iowa, Smith played baseball and had Tommy John surgery performed by Dr. James Andrews before beginning his career in field and turf management with the Cedar Rapids Kernels (Minnesota Twins, Class-A).
In the Ticket and Group Sales Department, the Thunder are pleased to welcome Freddie Strebeck and Tommy Kay as Ticket Sales Account Representatives and Kevin Brady as Group Sales Account Executive.
Strebeck, a 2017 graduate of West Chester University with a degree in Communications and Journalism, hails from South Brunswick, NJ and joins the full-time staff after spending the 2017 season as a Front Office Intern and Group Sales Coordinator. As a student, he completed a Social Media Marketing internship with the Rams' Athletic Department. Strebeck, an avid sports fan, attended the clinching game of the both the 2008 and 2009 World Series.
Kay joins the Thunder after spending 2017 with the Wilmington Blue Rocks as a Ticket Sales Assistant. Kay hails from Springfield, NJ and graduated from Temple University with a degree in Sport and Recreation Management. While at Temple, Kay completed internships with the Philadelphia Soul and Burlington County Division of Parks.
Brady joined the team as a Ticket Sales Assistant in 2016 and joined the full-time staff as a Ticket Sales Account Representative during the following season. Originally from Stow, Massachusetts, Brady joined the Thunder after serving as an Event Operations Intern for the Philadelphia Union (MLS) and a Game Day Operations Intern for the Philadelphia Soul (Arena Football League) while he completed his degree in Marketing & Management from Penn State Abington in 2015. Brady is an avid New England Patriots fan and much to his disappointment, shares no relation to Tom.
Lauren Cox joined the team as Office Manager in May after graduating from Temple University's Sport and Recreation Management in 2016. Cox comes to the Thunder after completing internships with the Men's and Women's US Open Golf Tournaments and the Lehigh Valley Ironpigs (Philadelphia Philles, Class-AAA) in 2014, and with Comcast Spectacor in 2015 and 2016 in talent acquisition and employee engagement. Originally from East Windsor, NJ, Cox lists her favorite foods as pizza, pierogies and pickles.
Your Thunder, presented by NJM Insurance, will begin the 2018 season, the 25th in franchise history, on Thursday, April 5 when they host the Richmond Flying Squirrels (San Francisco Giants). Season tickets, Pick-A-Plans, Mini Plans and Group Tickets are on sale now at www.TrentonThunder.com and by phone at 609-394-3300.