New Hires in Social Gaming: CrowdStar, Empire Avenue, Kabam, & More

The holiday season is in full swing and the effects of it are beginning to show their results in the hiring world this week. Though six social developers have shown new activity, according to data from LinkedIn, the overall volume is decidedly less than weeks prior. Even the largest developer, Zynga, has hired minimally, while others, such as Playdom, have kept their new hires to only a small handful.

Among all the new hires, the biggest name to show up came from Empire Avenue, which announced that it had hired former BioWare lead designer Brent Knowles as a gameplay consultant helping to bring the Empire Avenue game elements to new social platforms.

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.

And for those searching for new jobs, be sure to check out our Inside Network Job Board.

Here’s this week’s full list:


  • Catherine Maske — Now a contract artist for CrowdStar, Maske was previously doing contract work for Freshworld.

Empire Avenue

  • Brent Knowles — As noted above, the “Social Stock Market” game of Empire Avenue has acquired former BioWare creative director Brent Knowles as a consultant.


  • Justin Oronos — A resident advisor for Campus Living, Oronos scored an internship for social developer Kabam.
  • Hyewon Chang — Chang joins Kabam as their newest designer & animator. Before this, she was also a designer and animator for Red Giant Studios.


  • Jeannine Schafer — Formerly a concept artist for Electric Bat Interactive, Schafer joins Playdom this week as a senior artist.
  • Rory Desmond — Previously a student at the University of Colorado, Desmond is now a content researcher for Playdom.
  • Rebecca Meissner — An internal shift for Playdom, as Meissner changes roles from HR business partner to product manager.


  • Kim Amsberry — Now a senior technical program manager for PopCap, Amsberry was previously a lead operations analyst for Microsoft.
  • Jesse Jaren — A recent student at Seattle Central Community College, Jaren joins PopCap as their newest associate UI designer.

TeePee Games

  • Darren Newnham — A new games discovery platform for social, web, and mobile games, London-based TeePee Games has announced Newnham as their new head of content.  Newnham’s most recent role was as business development manager for Sega Europe.
  • James Duncan — Duncan is also joining TeePee Games this week as their newest content manager. Prior to this role, he was a video operator for PlayerX.


  • Adrian Walker — Walker joins Zynga as their newest producer. He previously filled the same role at Seamless Entertainment.
  • Rosa Freitag — Now a Brazilian Portuguese linguist for Zynga, Freitag was previously a Brazilian translator at SDL International.