Execs & Accounts for August 20, 2003

Anne Mitchell confirmed she’s stepping down as CEO of Palo Alto, Calif.-based Habeas, the spam-fighting firm she founded.

The circumstances of her departure were unclear, and by press time, Habeas hadn’t yet responded to inquiries about who might replace Mitchell. Habeas fights spam by using a “trusted sender” system that inserts a trademarked poem into the headers of non-spam email.

Before founding Habeas, Mitchell spent two years as director of legal and public affairs for Mail Abuse Prevention System, one of the pioneering anti-spam services. She will continue to serve as chair of the E-mail Management Roundtable, a group of CEOs and decision-makers at companies involved in the fight against spam.

Topica’s CEO, Anna Zornosa, has left the email company to join Knight Ridder Digital (KRD) as chief marketing officer, and has been replaced by insider Carter Hostelley.

In her new gig, Zornosa will direct KRD’s business and product strategy, handle national marketing and communication, and oversee audience metrics and analysis. She was CEO at Topica for three years, and previously worked at Women.com Networks, SmartAge, PointCast, and CMP Publications.

“We are delighted to have a customer-focused marketing executive with Anna’s expertise on board,” said Hilary Schneider, president and CEO of Knight Ridder Digital. “Her unique combination of product and marketing strategy, experience managing multiple affiliate brands, sales acumen, and journalism background make her a dynamite addition to the team.”

Zornosa’s replacement at Topica, Hostelly, who was formerly senior VP of finance and administration, has worked with the company since 2000. Prior to that, he was VP of international development at SmartAge.

Ellen Farnum Rich media ad firm PointRoll is opening a West Coast office and adding to its roster of employees, hiring Alex Hanan and Ellen Farnum.

Hanan, who formerly managed national healthcare, pharmaceuticals and real estate accounts for New York Times Digital, joins in the newly created position of Western regional sales director. He’ll head up the new Los Angeles office, and is charged with expanding the company’s entertainment business and further developing its client base on the West Coast. Prior to working at NYTD, Hanan was regional sales manager for Alta Vista.

Farnum, longtime VP for North American technology sales for 24/7 Real Media, has been hired as VP of channel development in charge of MSN. She’ll be responsible for managing PointRoll’s relationship with the Microsoft-owned portal, and will be based in the company’s Fort Washington, Penn., headquarters.

The rich media company has been seeing dramatic growth, and recently hired three new sales staffers for its headquarters.

Marketing firm TMX has welcomed Stan Rapp, one of the best-known direct marketers in the business, to its advisory board. The company is looking for guidance on growth strategies, as well as on “innovative advertising and marketing concepts.”

“We are thrilled that Mr. Rapp has decided to lend his unique expertise to TMX in assessing future trends for the fast-moving world of digitized direct marketing he helped shape,” said Eric Smith, chief strategic officer of TMX.

For 23 years, Rapp was the CEO of what is now Omnicom’s Rapp Collins Worldwide, a global direct response agency with reported billings of more than $3 billion. For the past seven years he served as CEO and then chairman of the rapidly growing CRM Partners unit of McCann Erickson Worldwide.

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