2015 XBIZ Exec Awards Honors Retail Industry

Ariana Rodriguez

LOS ANGELES – The 2015 XBIZ Exec Awards celebrated the career success of individuals from the various fields within the pleasure products and retail sectors Wednesday night.

The 2015 XBIZ Executive Award winners are:

  • Business Development Executive of the Year
    Lynn Swanson, Classic Erotica
  • Brand Ambassador of the Year
    Conde Aumann, The Screaming O
  • Marketing Executive of the Year
    Desireé Duffie, CalExotics
  • Senior Leadership of the Year
    Chad Braverman, Doc Johnson
  • Progressive Leadership of the Year
    Scott Watkins, Doc Johnson
  • Tech Leadership of the Year
    Erik Van Riper, Honey's Place
  • Community Figure of the Year
    Coyote Days, Good Vibrations
  • Chief Executive of the Year
    Bob Pyne Jr., Williams Trading Co.
  • Businesswoman of the Year
    Bonnie Feingold, Honey’s Place
  • Businessman of the Year
    Steve Volponi, Devil’s Film

About 200 industry professionals, including nominees and several others who were there to cheer along colleagues, attended the exclusive cocktail-style awards ceremony.

The Senior Leadership Award was among the event’s highlights with tender moment beginning with a special introduction by XBIZ founder and publisher Alec Helmy.

“A little over three yeas ago I became a father,” he said. “Those of you that have children already know what an incredibly rewarding experience it is. To think that one day your child will become fiercely ambitious is incredible. For your child to choose to also choose to follow in your footsteps and built on top of your own accomplishments is a dream.”

Making a surprise appearance from behind the XBIZ Exec Awards stage, Doc Johnson founder Ron Braverman followed with words for his son.

“A few years ago I had the pleasure of accepting the Man of the Year Award,” he said. “At that time it was a tremendous affirmation that your peers, the people in your industry, recognize you. You feel strongly about it, it’s very satisfying. When I was asked to be here I realized the real affirmation is giving this award to my son – to know that he is being recognized.

“But there’s more to it than a father-son situation. Chad is really the face of the modern-day Doc Johnson. As many of said over the years, the packaging, the branding, the line are really the face of Chad.”

In his acceptance speech, Braverman said, “I grew up in this industry with a lot of the people in this room tonight. Watching the adversity that my father faced along with the other pioneers of this industry instilled a lot in me, to work hard and take this company into the future. It’s something that's near and dear to my hard and I will continue to fight hard for it.”

Another accolade for the Doc Johnson team went to Scott Watkins, the company’s vice president of sales and marketing.

“I just want to thank everyone here,” he said. “You guys are all friends so I’m truly honored to be recognized by my fellow colleagues that I respect so much. I want to thank the entire Doc Johnson team.”

In her acceptance speech for the Marketing Executive of the Year award, Duffie said “everybody in at CalExotics works toward the same goal. It’s all about product, packaging promotion so really this is an honor that goes out to Susan Colvin and the entire CalExotics team.”

Businessman of the Year winner Steve Volponi said, “I didn’t expect this. Behind every little guy, there’s a driving force and that force is Nick Orlandino. I’d also like to thank my partner Eric Gutterman – without them this just wouldn’t be possible.”