New Hires in Social Gaming: Digital Chocolate, GameHouse, Kabam, & More

Eight top developers have shown hiring activity based on LinkedIn updates and other sources. In terms of major hires, two older updates from Playdom and Zynga came our way in the form of BioWare’s Gordon Walton and Valve Software’s W. Wright Bagwell. The two join the respective companies in the roles of executive producer and director of design. More recently, Keith Zentner is noted as PopCap Games’ new director of franchise marketing and Benjamin Cooley is now CTO of studios (STG) at Zynga.

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 information about most new hires, below, comes directly from company updates from LinkedIn.

Looking for new opportunities? The Inside Network Job Board presents a survey of current openings at leading companies in the industry.

Here’s this week’s full list:

Digital Chocolate


  • Jamie Toghill — GameHouse, the social gaming arm of RealNetworks, starts off its long list of hires with Toghill, who joins as a senior producer. Toghill was previously a lead designer at Disney Interactive Studios.
  • Cliff Stefanuk — Now a product manager at GameHouse, Stefanuk was previously a sales manager at Filogix Limited Partnership.
  • Daniel Kristjanson — Prior to joining GameHouse as a game artist, Kristjanson was an animator at Smiley Guy Studios.
  • Robert Sanchez — Sanchez joins GameHouse as a game designer. Before this, he was a 2D artist/UI designer at Big Fish Games.
  • Joseph Boutilier — GameHouse gains a new game designer with Boutilier, a former student at the Vancouver Film School.
  • Steven Pennington — Joining GameHouse as a software developer co-op is Pennington, who was previously a BlackBerry multimedia applications Java developer co-op at Research In Motion.
  • Aimee Paganini — Previously a senior producer at Humongous Entertainment/Atari, Paganini now fills the same role at GameHouse.
  • Eric Glomstad — Now a web developer for GameHouse, Glomstad was previously filling the same role at Clearwire Inc.
  • Morgan LaVigne — LaVigne is now a software development engineer at GameHouse. Prior experience stems from clients such as Microsoft and White Stripes.
  • Krystle Alvarez — GameHouse brings on Alvarez as their newest game artist. Before this, Alvarez was a web designer at ShareBuilder from ING Direct.
  • Suneetha Talasila — Talasila is now a senior software developer at GameHouse. Talasila was previously a consultant for Frontier Technologies LLC.


  • Stanislave Vishnevskiy — Kabam brings on a new software engineer with Vishnevskiy, a former software developer for Casamba Inc.
  • Sasan Padidar — Now a software engineer for Kabam, Padidar was previously an analyst and programmer for Virtusales.


  • Pedro Mancheno — A single hire for Metrogames this week as Mancheno joins the team as an iPhone developer. Prior to this, he was a Unity3D developer at Band Of Coders.


  • Gordon Walton — As noted already, Gordon Walton has joined Playdom as an executive producer (as of mid-February). He was previously BioWare Austin’s VP and co-general manager.


  • Sam Miller — Miller joins Playfish, this week, as their newest game artist. Before this, he was an artist at Rare.

PopCap Games

  • David Schulman — PopCap hires on Schulman as a social gaming business analyst intern. Prior to this, he was a financial analyst intern at Marcus & Millichap.
  • Keith Zentner — As noted earlier, Keith Zentner joins PopCap as its new director of franchise marketing. Zentner was previously a managing partner at Copious LLC.


  • Vince Livings — In an internal change at Zynga, Livings moves from 2D artist to 3D artist.
  • Ange Maestas — Now an executive assistant at Zynga, Maestas was previously filling the same role at Beche Group, LLC.
  • John Egan — Egan joins Zynga as “freelance.” He was a a freelance art director and Flash animator at Organic.
  • Randall Smith — Zynga gains a new 3D artist with Smith, a former artist from Kuma Reality Games.
  • Hiten Kapadia — Previously a payroll accountant at Cascade, Kapadia joins Zynga as a senior payroll accountant.
  • Annie Krambuhl — Before joining Zynga as a graphic artist, Krambuhl was a graphic designer at Dapper/Yahoo!.
  • Owen Lopez — Now an associate engineer at Zynga, Lopez was previously a security guard at Cypress Security.
  • Benjamin Cooley — As stated prior, Benjamin Cooley is now CTO of studios (STG) at Zynga. He was previously a programmer for Booyah.
  • W. Wright Bagwell — Also one of Zynga’s bigger hires recently, W. Wright Bagwell joins the team as the new director of design. Before joining, he was a designer at Valve.