As an advocate for the marketing industry and chapter leader in providing quality education to our members, AMA Iowa designed the Advisory Council to connect us to marketing leaders.
The Advisory Council was established in 2019 to help our chapter grow in our understanding of
- Marketing challenges across industries
- What today’s marketing leaders need to develop their teams
- Topics for leadership development
- How we can work as a marketing community to solve industry problems
Interested in Joining AMA Iowa’s Advisory Council?
We’re always eager to bring talented leaders to our Advisory Council. If you are leading marketing teams and have an interest in lending value to this group, please reach out to discuss it further: Programs@amaiowa.com
Meet Our AMA Iowa Advisory Council
A special thank you to the bright minds of these leaders. We’re grateful for both their insights, time, and talent within both our association and our industry.
Senior Director of Marketing, Vermeer Corporation
Ryan Benbo is senior director of marketing for Vermeer Corporation, an agricultural and industrial equipment manufacturer based in Pella, Iowa. In this role, he has the opportunity to combine his passion for branding and storytelling with his love of farm and construction equipment. He leads a global marketing and training team focused on equipping dealers with the expertise they need to support customers and helping the company share how its equipment makes a real impact on businesses, communities and families all around the world.
Ryan joined Vermeer in 2015 after serving as a senior vice president in the Minneapolis office of Weber Shandwick, one of the world’s leading public relations and branding firms. In his more than 12 years, he led strategic brand, marketing and communication initiatives for a variety of global clients in the defense, outdoor powersports, construction equipment and health care industries. He began his career with the Minnesota Department of Agriculture serving in a variety of communications roles. He holds a BA in Communications, as well as a Master’s in Theological studies from the University of Northwestern St. Paul.
Michael Bird is CEO of Spindustry which celebrates its 25th year in 2021. Michael works with manufacturers and other organizations of digital transformation. With a background that combines marketing and technology, Michael helps organizations improve processes and grow their business. Michael graduated from the University of Colorado before joining EDS and then founding Spindustry. Michael is married with two children and has lived in Des Moines since 1996.
Senior Vice President of Marketing, NCMIC, Inc.
Scott is an executive-level brand, marketing, and communications professional with over 18 years of management experience in the Des Moines market. Before joining NCMIC in May 2019, Scott spent nearly 25 years with Des Moines Radio Group. Scott serves on the Waukee Family YMCA and Easter Seals Iowa boards. He was also named to the Des Moines Business Record's Forty Under 40 in 2003.
Chief Marketing Officer, The Wittern Group
Ashley Hubler is an executive leader with a successful record of driving growth through new customer acquisition, channel and new product expansion, and M&A. Her expertise includes corporate strategy, go-to-market execution (sales, marketing, and distribution), project management, and talent development within complex, multi-business unit organizations.
As Chief Marketing Officer at The Wittern Group, Ashley oversees all aspects of the company’s marketing efforts and brand communications. She is responsible for market research, strategy, product development, e-commerce marketing, brand management, social and traditional media engagement, public relations, and customer communications for The Wittern Group and its portfolio companies. Through its portfolio companies, The Wittern Group offers a wide range of products and services including automatic merchandising and controlled dispensing equipment, commercial lending, digital payment solutions, inventory management software, construction aggregate products, real estate development, and professional services.
Before joining The Wittern Group in 2015, Ashley was Manager, Communications and Proposals at MainStream, LLC, a boutique management consulting firm. During her eight years at MainStream, she led a diverse range of activities spanning across the company’s public and private sector business units. Her responsibilities included leading management consulting engagements, aligning marketing sales and operations to create a seamless customer experience, and managing proposal efforts. Prior to MainStream, LLC, Ashley was Director, Marketing for Perfect Game USA, a global professional baseball scouting services organization.
Ashley is a Project Management Institute (PMI) certified Project Management Professional (PMP). She earned her Master of Business Administration degree from the University of Iowa’s Henry B. Tippie School of Management and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Administration from Coe College. She completed executive development programs at The University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business and Michigan State University’s Eli Broad College of Business.
Greg Kanz, APR, CPSM
Marketing Director, Shive-Hattery
By day, Greg Kanz is marketing director for Shive-Hattery, a 425-person architecture engineering design firm with eleven offices across Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Nebraska, and Wisconsin. By night, he is a drummer for various performers and theatre companies including Lynne Rothrock, Janelle Lauer, Marita May, City Park, GMIX, and SPT Theatre. Greg and his wife Keelyn have two kids: Calvin (18), a freshman at Iowa State University, and Kyra (15) a sophomore at Linn-Mar High School.
Director of Partnerships and Content, Pratum
Trevor has led content marketing programs for both public- and private-sector clients in multiple industries, including media, technology, tourism, and residential and commercial construction. Today, he’s helping build the Midwest of tomorrow by leading partnerships and content for one of the nation's top information security companies. Trevor has served as editor of multiple magazines, including Meredith’s Midwest Living, and has a passion for helping others find their brand storytelling groove through his conference presentations, classroom lectures, and more. Trevor often serves as a translator who brings the “suits” and “creatives” together, thanks to his combo of a journalism background and an MBA.
Director of Marketing, ARAG
As the Director of Marketing at ARAG, Chris leads the development and implementation of initiatives to enhance ARAG's visibility, reputation, and brand effectiveness. Serving on ARAG’s leadership team, he directs marketing strategies across all channels and audiences to increase brand awareness, sales, member participation, and customer retention.
Prior to joining ARAG in 2016, Chris lived in Phoenix, Arizona for 20 years and held leadership roles in marketing, digital marketing, web content development, and communications. Chris has a bachelor's degree in advertising and public relations from Drake University and a master's of business administration degree from the University of Phoenix.
Chris is an avid photographer and traveler.
Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing, Delta Dental of Iowa
April Schmaltz is the Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing for Delta Dental of Iowa. In her role, she leads enterprise-wide sales and marketing strategies that enhance the corporate brand, develop new products, attract and retain business, develop new business opportunities, and oversee communications for all key stakeholder groups. Prior to joining Delta Dental in 2014, April served as the Vice President of Marketing for TMG Financial Services, Assistant Vice President for Marsh U.S. Consumer, and Market Team Leader at Briggs Corporation. With more than 20 years of experience in marketing strategy, branding, integrated marketing, and new business growth, April has lead sales and market teams primarily in the health care and financial services industries. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from St. Mary’s University and a Master of Business Administration from Iowa State University. In addition, April serves on numerous professional and community boards and councils including the Iowa American Marketing Association, Easter Seals of Iowa, and the Global Insurance Accelerator.
Chief Marketing Officer, The Iowa Clinic
Kiley grew up in the age of traditional advertising and started her professional career in the newspaper industry. Over the last 15 years, she has witnessed the evolution of digital marketing since the first days of AOL chat, Google, and Facebook. She has worked in a wide variety of industries including manufacturing, healthcare, and pharmaceuticals and home improvement, which gives her a unique perspective on how different organizations structure and measure their marketing efforts. She believes in using data and analytics to drive marketing strategy. Today she leads patient-centric marketing efforts at The Iowa Clinic as their Chief Marketing Officer. She lives in Waukee with her husband, three kids, and French bulldog, Tank.
Director of Marketing, Wellmark Blue Cross and Blue Shield
Tracy drives brands forward with strategic thinking, great creative, and measurable results. A well-rounded marketing leader with 20+ years of experience in virtually all aspects of marketing on both the client and agency side.