New Hires in Social Gaming: Booyah, GSN, Kabam, & More

After several weeks of fairly intensive hiring, things appear to finally be slowing down. According to data from LinkedIn, only six of the larger social game developers have shown new activity, as opposed to nine last week. That said, the past seven days have shown a few bigger updates. Catching word from the folks over at Booyah, Brian Cho is now director of business development and marketing; a promotion from business development. Also, according to LinkedIn updates, Navendu Chandra is now director of product management at Kabam. RockYou has also announced major hires this week in the form of Katrina Osio and John Yoo, the company’s new SVP of marketing and creative director, respectively.

As always, if your company is hiring new people or making a notable promotion, please let us know. Email editor (at) insidesocialgames (dot) com, and we’ll get it into this or next week’s post. Also, please note that most new hires presented are based on company updates from LinkedIn.

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Here’s this week’s full list:


  • Brian Cho — As noted prior, Brian Cho is now the director of business development and marketing at Booyah, having been a recent promotion from business development. Prior to joining Booyah, he was a business development manager for Ubisoft.
  • Emerson Tung — Joining Booyah as an artist this week is Tung. Before this, Tung was an intern concept artist for Fearless Studios.


  • Matt Koff — Formerly a freelance animation producer at HBO, Koff joins GSN as a staff writer.


  • Navendu Chandra — According to LinkedIn updates, Navendu Chandra is now reported as the director of product management at Kabam. Previously, he was a senior product manager at PayPal.
  • Josh Forester — Forester also joins Kabam as a community manager. Prior to this, he was a community advocate for RockYou.


  • Tiago Rodrigues — Now a JavaScript engineer for Playfish, Rodrigues was previously a JavaScript developer at Portugal Telecom.


  • Katrina Osio — Katrina Osio joins RockYou this week as their new SVP of marketing. She comes with a long and various background from various interactive companies, but was most recently head of marketing for Fastpoint Games.
  • John Yoo — Another major hire for RockYou is John Yoo who joins the team as their new creative director. Most recently, Yoo was the design lead of CityVille for Zynga.
  • Shona Sanzgiri — Sanzgiri joins RockYou this week as a contract copywriter. He was previously an intern at San Jose Mercury News.
  • Suresh Bathini — RockYou gains a new head of ads. engineering this week with Bathini, who was engineering for Yahoo.


  • Michelle Fontana-Garcia — Fontana-Garcia kicks off a long list of Zynga updates, joining the company as an IT project coordinator. Prior to this, she was an administrator at Sun Microsystems.
  • Katie Corna — Now a 2D artist for Zynga, Corna was “Maverick Cinequest Film Spot” at House of Chai.
  • Miles Sabin — Previously a localization manager (PMO) at PayPal, Sabin is now a localization producer at Zynga.
  • Roman Akberdin — Akberdin, formerly a user interface programming intern at Insomniac Games, joins Zynga this week as a software engineer.
  • Lacey Salet — Zynga gains a new HR generalist with Salet, a former talent coordinator for Electronic Arts.
  • Kushan Shah — Shah joins Zynga as a software Engineer. Shah was previously a web applications intern at Social Cloud LLC.
  • Stephanie Romo — Zynga takes on Romo as a university relations coordinator. She was previously a case management intern at Maryland Department of Juvenile Services.
  • David Calkins — Part of the NewToy acquisition, Calkins officially moves his communications director tag from under NewToy to under Zynga.
  • Stephen Young — Previously an internet coordinator for Williams-Sonoma, Inc., Young is now a graphic designer for Zynga.
  • Ranjit Radhakrishnan — A former consultant at Headstrong, Radhakrishnan is now a product manager for YoVille at Zynga.
  • Christine Hernandez — Now a tax manager for Zynga, Hernandez was previously filling the same role at Ernst & Young LLP.
  • Shelong Yang — Previously a functional quality assurance tester for Sega of America, Inc., Yang is now a quality assurance analyst for Zynga.
  • Amber Hiden — Hiden joins Zynga this week as an assistant producer. She was previously a production assistant at Vir2L Studios.
  • Justing Tajchman — Now a software engineer for Zynga, Tajchman was a senior software engineer at Electric Bat Interactive.