All Baby & Child (ABC), producers of the ABC Kids Expo is pleased to announce changes in the front office and board of directors effective January 1, 2021.
Aaron Pederson will be stepping down as Chairman of the board to assume the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) role overseeing trade show production and management at ABC. With this change, the board of directors has elected Lea Culliton of HABA USA to fill his remaining term as Chairman.
A veteran retailer of the Juvenile industry, Pederson of Kid’s Stuff Superstore in Lincoln, Nebraska, joined the nonprofit’s board of directors in 2014, serving as a retailer representative. Chairmen since April 2019, Pederson has presided over a changing business climate in the B2B trade show industry and the quick pivot necessary to hosting virtual events after the canceled 2020 ABC Kids Expo slated for September 9-11 at the Las Vegas Convention Center due to COVID-19.
“Though I will miss working in my family’s retails stores on the eve of our 40th anniversary, the opportunity to lead ABC through a shift in what trade shows of the future may look like is a challenge I look forward to,” states Aaron Pederson. “I want to thank Lea and the entire board of directors for their trust in me to carry out a new vision that keeps the ABC Kids Expo positioned as the leading North American juvenile trade show.”
Culliton, also a veteran of both toy and juvenile industries, is the President at HABA USA, where she’s worked since 2002. Like Pederson, she joined the board of directors in 2014, representing manufacturers. Culliton brings a wealth of board and leadership experience to her new role, not only in her time with All Baby & Child but serving as a past director on the board of ASTRA, a leading trade association in the toy industry.
“I am deeply honored to accept the Chairman of the Board position for ABC Kids Expo. I’m excited to embrace the challenges that are occurring in the industry. My 18 years of experience in the Toy & Game industry focusing on specialty should bode well,” said Lea Culliton. “I’ve always been the “early adapter” to change and enjoy the thrill of finding new ideas, new resources, and doing the research to see if those ideas would potentially work. Sometimes they do, sometimes they don’t, but at least we learn along the way and are not standing still.”
All Baby & Child looks forward to announcing a full lineup of events for 2021 while continuing to monitor the raising concerns around the spread and safety of COVID-19.
The board of directors would also like to thank Larry & Elizabeth Schur for their 17 years of dedication to the All Baby & Child organization since its inception and contributions to the juvenile industry at large.
“Larry and Elizabeth have been instrumental in building ABC Kids Expo into an internationally recognized show,” Pederson said. “They have proven to be great friends, and for this, I wish them success moving forward.