Steve Phillips was elected to the board of directors in 2011.In 2012 he was elected as chairman of the board.
He served as Chief Information Officer (CIO) for Avnet, a $26B (FY16 revenue) global technology distributor between 2005 and 2017.Previously he was CIO at Memec, a global electronic components distributor, between 2004 and 2005. Prior to joining Memec, Mr. Phillips was CIO for Gateway Inc. He was previously the IT leader for Diageo’s European foods business. Early in his career, he served in a number of engineering and operations leadership roles at Thorn EMI.
Between 2008 through 2011, he served as chairman of the board of the Arizona Technology Council, a trade association that represents Arizona’s technology industry.
In 2015, Mr. Phillips was inducted into the CIO Hall of Fame, a lifetime achievement that honors IT executives and visionaries whose leadership has significantly impacted the field of IT. Additionally, he received an HMG Strategy Transformational CIO Leadership Award in 2012 and was named a Computerworld Premier 100 IT Leader in 2011.
Mr. Phillips holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Electronic Engineering from Essex University and a post-graduate Diploma in Management Studies from the University of West London. He is a Fellow of the Institution of Engineering and Technology.
Director of Wick Communications since 2013
David Lord served as president and CEO of Pioneer Newspapers from 1991 through 2009 and remains a director of the company.
He has served as a board member and director of the Associated Press, is chairman and past president of PAGE, a media cooperative, was chairman and past president of the Inland Press Association and was a board member and director of the Newspaper Association of America.
Lord also serves as a board member and director of Craft Brew Alliance, a publicly traded craft brewery, where he is chairman of the compensation committee and a member of the audit committee.
Francis WickPresident & CEO
Francis Wick is the President and CEO of Wick Communications and Board member since 2007.
He is the youngest member of the third generation ownership of Wick Communications, a family-owned media company which has newspapers from North Carolina to Alaska and from Louisiana to North Dakota.
Prior to the Herald/Review Wick was the publisher of the Montrose Daily Press in Colorado.
Born in Sierra Vista, he is a 1999 graduate of Buena High School.
He has a bachelor’s degree in political science and a master’s in business administration from the University of Arizona.
Wick, in his early 30s, has held numerous positions at other Wick Communications newspapers learning various aspects of the trade.
He and his wife Amanda have two children, twins Sebastian and Savannah.
He currently serves as a co-chair of the Inland Family Owners committee and has been a member of the Wick board of directors since 2007. His interest includes spending time with family, golfing, cheering on the Arizona Wildcats, and serving up tasty dishes in the kitchen.
Director of Wick Communications since 2003
Director of Wick Communications since 2014
Suzanne Schlicht is Chief Operating Officer for WorldWest Limited Liability Company and The World Company, a fourth generation family-owned media company based in Lawrence, Kansas. The companies own and operate newspapers in Arizona, Colorado and Kansas. Schlicht is also publisher of Steamboat Today, a daily newspaper owned by WorldWest, located in Steamboat Springs, Colorado.
Ms. Schlicht has enjoyed a long career with The World Company and WorldWest. She joined the company in 1994 when it purchased a group of newspapers in the West, including the Steamboat Springs property where Ms. Schlicht was publisher. She has served as publisher and regional manager in the past and assumed her current position as COO in 2010. The company has long been recognized as an industry leader in content quality and progressive digital strategies.
Ms. Schlicht earned her Bachelor of Journalism from University of Nebraska. She serves on the board of directors for the Local Media Association and is currently vice-president. She is also a board member of the Steamboat Springs Chamber Resort Association and was president of the organization in 1998/99. Ms. Schlicht has been a member of the Rotary Club of Steamboat Springs for 22 years. She was named Rotarian of the Year in 2007 and served as president of the club in 2010.
Ms. Schlicht is a past president of Colorado Press Association (2003) and was named Colorado Newspaper Person of the Year in 2006 by the organization.
Ms. Schlicht is mother to two children, Allison (13) and David (9). She is an avid trail runner. The family enjoys many outdoor activities including skiing, biking and hiking.
Arne L. HoelDirector
Director of Wick Communications since 2016
Arne L. Hoel invested the first 25-years of his career working for two large CPA firms and then a privately held media company. In 2009 he became self-employed developing a business turn-around strategy partnering in the acquisition of a variety of businesses and is now the Managing Member/Member of a number of ventures including:
Automobile dealerships operating in Nevada and California with gross sales of $150 million; Reno Dealership Group LLC dba Reno Buick GMC Cadillac, NorCal Dealership Group LLC dba Ukiah Ford and Carson Car Center LLC dba Carson Car Center. The operations of Fast Lane Ventures LLC dba Mercedes-Benz of Reno were sold in 2015 to provide additional investment capital and the entity will be closed in 2016.
Real estate investment leasing companies with commercial and residential holdings; MW Properties LLC, Carson Car Center Properties LLC, and FiftyFifty LLC. Media companies with 55 newspapers having over 1 million copies home delivered, a ¾ million distribution targeted coupon book and a digital media company serving Phoenix and Tucson, Arizona and Dallas and Houston Texas; 1013 Communications LLC and 1013 Star Communications LLC.
Various other companies involved in the financial sector, distribution and construction industries.
During his career, Arne has focused on company growth, start-up ventures, acquisitions, and turnarounds. In addition to the media and automobile businesses, he has owned companies in various industries including sheet metal fabrication, oil and gas wells, equipment leasing, off-shore warranty insurance, wine distribution, real estate leasing, real estate development and a foreign currency exchange fund. The most recent venture is a new home building company called Legacy Communities targeted to meet market demand in the Reno, Nevada area.
Arne assumed the General Manager position at Reno Buick GMC Cadillac when the business was purchased in 2010. Upon completion of the turnaround strategy, he hired a General Manager. In August of 2014, Arne again assumed the position of General Manager at the Dealership to focus on growth and is currently grooming his successor.
Arne currently serves on various boards and committees for companies which he owns, the US Bank Advisory Committee and PAGE Audit Committee and Board. He formerly served on American Consolidated Newspapers, Huckle Media Company, Swift Communications, Inland Press Foundation, Inland Press Association Cost & Revenue Committee and other Boards. He is an associate member of Vistage. Arne currently is a youth club level and high school soccer coach and has a passion for engaging kids through sports.
Arne holds a B.S. degree Accounting Concentration from California State University Sacramento (1983).
John P. RomneyDirector
John P. Romney joined the Board of Directors of Wicks Communications in April 2017.
Since 2004, he has been a Managing Director of Levine Leichtman Capital Partners, Inc. (“LLCP”), a private equity firm with offices in Los Angeles, Dallas, Chicago, New York, London and The Hague. LLCP manages approximately $7.5 billion of institutional private equity capital. Mr. Romney is responsible for origination of new investment opportunities throughout the Southern United States and the Pacific Northwestern United States from LLCP’s Dallas office. He led the firm’s efforts in the establishment of the investment offices in Dallas, Chicago, New York and London.
Mr. Romney has over 35 years of experience in working with various size companies on their financing needs and capital structure requirements. He has previous experience in private equity, commercial banking, merchant banking, investment banking, and mergers and acquisition advisory services.
Mr. Romney’s industry experience includes manufacturing, steel, energy, petrochemical, distribution, hospitality, retail, and service companies. He has experience in servicing both private and public companies. Mr. Romney also has extensive experience in the investment and placement of senior and subordinated debt, commercial lending, mezzanine and equity investments, mergers and acquisition advisory services, and investment banking services.
In addition, Mr. Romney has been involved with many troubled company situations. His experience with companies in transition includes assisting companies in workout situations, refinancing debt, bankruptcy advisory services, troubled company mergers and acquisition services and the placement of new debt or equity.
Mr. Romney holds a Bachelor of Arts degree (Business Management) from the Marriott School of Management at Brigham Young University and a Masters of Business Administration degree (Finance) from the W.P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University. He is a member of the Association for Corporate Growth and the Turnaround Management Association.
Mr. Romney resides in Southlake, Texas (Dallas, Ft. Worth area) with his wife, Jill. The Romney’s have six children, five of whom are married, and six grandchildren, with one due in October 2017. He is active in leadership service to the LDS Church and the Boy Scouts of America. An avid runner, he enjoys participating in distance running and various sports.