KALMBACH ANNOUNCES LEADERSHIP FOR NEW DIGITAL INITIATIVE
New Leadership Promoted for Trains.Com and Digital Video Efforts
WAUKESHA/NEW YORK, N.Y. (October 8, 2019) — Kalmbach Media (Kalmbach), the content creator of such well-known and respected media brands as Trains, Model Railroader, Astronomy, and Discover among others today announced two new leadership appointments as part of Trains.com, a new digital initiative centered on the company’s train-focused brands.
“Launching in 2020, Trains.com will become the ultimate digital destination for people who are passionate about all things train-related,” says Dan Hickey, Kalmbach CEO. “The new destination will be an umbrella site for all of our train brands, including Model Railroader, Trains, Classic Trains, Classic Toy Trains, and Garden Railways.” Hickey says that Trains.com will encompass a wide range of topics including modeling how-to; railroading news, information and history; stories and photos of amazing layouts and collectibles; and access to unique rail travel stories and tours.
To lead the initiative, Hickey announced that David Popp has been promoted to the newly created role of Executive Producer for Trains.com. In 2013, Popp launched Kalmbach’s Model Railroader Video Plus (MRVP), the company’s first all-digital video subscription. The pioneering site quickly found a devoted digital video audience among model railroad enthusiasts, with more than 11,000 paid subscribers and roughly 30,000 unique visitors per month. Popp also has extensive experience as an editor at the company’s founding brand, Model Railroader.
“David is the natural choice for this leadership role,” Hickey says. “As his work on MRVP has proven, he’s endlessly innovative and brings deep knowledge and passion to this market.” The content staffs for all of Kalmbach’s train-related brands will now report to Popp.
In addition to Popp’s promotion, Kalmbach announced that Kent Johnson has been promoted to Producer for Trains.com video. Johnson will also lead Kalmbach’s corporate video services department. In his new role, Johnson will oversee developing, hosting, directing, filming, editing, and programming instructional and entertaining video content for Trains.com as well as other brands in the Kalmbach portfolio. Johnson joined Kalmbach in 1994 and has held editorial positions in Kalmbach’s book division as well as the company’s Garden Railways, Classic Toy Trains and Model Railroader brands.
Completing the management changes for Trains.com, veteran editor Carl Swanson will move from his leading role at Classic Toy Trains magazine to take on chief editor duties at Kalmbach’s founding brand, Model Railroader. Current MR editor Hal Miller will now helm two Trains.com properties: Classic Toy Trains and Garden Railways. They will report to Popp.
“When it comes to trains both large and small, no one can compete with the quality of our content and the breadth and depth of our passion,” says Hickey. “From the days when Kalmbach first launched Model Railroader and Trains until now, we have always been innovators in the way we create and deliver exceptional experiences and value to our customers. We’re looking forward to continuing that legacy with Trains.com.”
About Kalmbach Media:
Kalmbach Media is a leading independent media company that provides ideas and inspiration to avid hobbyists, enthusiasts and citizen scientists through its multichannel brands including Astronomy, Discover, Bead&Button, FineScale Modeler, Garden Railways, Scale Auto, Classic Toy Trains, Model Railroader, Model Railroader Video Plus, Trains, and Classic Trains.
Kalmbach’s digital media websites and extensions across the Kalmbach portfolio of brands reach more than 35 million consumers on 18 sites, including the e-commerce sites My Science Shop, Kalmbach Hobby Store and the Jewelry & Beading Store. Kalmbach is also a leading producer of conferences and experiential events for the hobbyist and enthusiast marketplace.
Patrick Taylor, 59Media, 917/653-4785|, [email protected]
Lindsey Von Busch, 732-284-9089| [email protected]