Staff and Board

Our Staff

Meet Our Team of Experts

Executive Director Photo
Executive Director

Stephanie Siegel

Stephanie has been in the marketing industry for 27 years. Her role has varied: Innkeeper for the Grapevine Bed & Breakfast at Debonne Vineyards, Marketing Manager for Joseph-Beth Booksellers, Marketing Director for the Cuyahoga County Public Library System, and Community Relations Director for Emeritus Senior Living. She is an active volunteer for Camp Sue Osborn, the Malone Scholarship Program, and is a puppy foster for a local rescue group. Stephanie and her husband PJ have two boys, Patrick and Joey. On her list of favorites: hunting for Lake Erie beach glass, a turkey reuben at Briquette's Smokehouse, and the September smell of grapes in the Grand River Valley.

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Business Office Manager Photo
Business Office Manager

Brandi Braun

Brandi has been in the Customer Service field for over 25 years, with dedication on retaining long-standing business relationships. Simultaneously, she has earned over 10 years of Business Office experience managing her family business. A life-long Ashtabula County resident, Brandi and her husband have enjoyed raising their daughter and two sons here and have a passion for the community. She is the go-to person for financial information and supporting business development.

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Marketing Manager Photo
Marketing Manager

Amanda Lloyd

Amanda was born and raised in the farming community of Pierpont in Ashtabula County. With a background in graphic design, marketing, and communications, Amanda's career has spanned from designing magazines for a regional publishing company, spearheading membership and fundraising marketing for a national non-profit, and leading communications for a public school district in suburban Cleveland.

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Public Relations Manager Photo
Public Relations Manager

Margaret Price

Margaret has been in the travel and tourism industry for 5 years. Margaret previously served as an Account Executive for Great Lakes Publishing, which involved assisting DMO’s and Attractions in the NE region of Ohio with media planning and developing strategic marketing campaigns. In her free time, you’ll find her exploring Ohio with her Fiancé, Sam, creating Tik Toks, and spending time with her dog, Willow.

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Tourism Manager Photo
Tourism Manager

Jennifer Downey

Jennifer has local roots and was a member of the final graduating class at Harbor High School. She spent the next 20 years as an Air Force spouse and was ecstatic to return home to Ashtabula County after her husband retired from active duty. During Jen’s time as a military spouse, she earned a bachelor’s degree in Psychology and worked as a Program Director for the Air Force Chaplain Corp for over a decade. Jen and her husband are enjoying their civilian life to the fullest; paddle boarding Lake Erie, enjoying all things local, and serving in their local church community. Jen’s perfect date night would consist of dinner at Halcyon (the Black & Blue steak salad is her favorite) and a sunset paddle tour at Harbor Yak.

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Executive Committee

Meet our Leadership Team

Eddy Eckart Photo
Eddy Eckart

President

AT LARGE

Eddy and his wife, Misty moved to Harpersfield in 2014 because they saw what amounted to a near perfect quality of life opportunity - proximity to family, outdoor activities, excellent wineries, local produce, quaint towns with engaged community members, and the chance to create their own entrepreneurial activity using local products. Since moving here, he has engaged on both business and community levels, partnering with Red Eagle Distillery to create Red E Vodka, made from locally-grown concord grapes. Their family has also invested in a vineyard, planted grapes in 2016, and looking forward to additional investment in the near future. From a community perspective, he initiated the Grand River Valley Regional Branding Initiative, an effort to identify and build a regional brand for the area's wine region and surrounding communities and activities.

Jim Hockaday Photo
Jim Hockaday

Vice President

Conneaut City Manager
AT LARGE

As City Manager for Conneaut, Jim firmly believes Conneaut will play a special role in tourism for the County in the coming years. Presently, they are working on two hotel site locations which are very promising. Additionally, their Port Authority is seeking a $2M marine expansion. As they look forward to the future, it is important to mention the nearly half a dozen new small lodgers that have started business in the past year alone. Conneaut is an emerging tourism market with a great deal to offer. He looks forward to seeing where that growth takes the County as a whole and continuing his work with the ACCVB Board.

Jenny Lutha Photo
Jenny Lutha

Secretary

Harbor Halcyon
AT LARGE

Jenny is the owner/operator of Harbor Halcyon, a fun restaurant in Ashtabula Harbor. Growing up in an active resort town, she saw first hand how tourism can transform a community into a Mecca of excitement and prosperity. She believes that it is up to the Ashtabula County CVB to show the world how great lake life can be. A fun fact about Jenny, she and her family lived on their sailboat for nearly a decade throughout the east coast of the US and into the Caribbean.

Andrea Bushweiler Photo
Andrea Bushweiler

Treasurer

The Lakehouse Inn & Winery
AT LARGE

Andrea was born and raised in Geneva. Upon graduating from college in 2000 she moved home, and along with her family, purchased The Lakehouse Inn & Winery in Geneva-on-the-Lake. Andrea is the general manager of the business and oversees the day to day operations. She has served on the ACCVB executive committee for over 10 years. Andrea is a past president of the ACCVB executive committee and currently serves as treasurer. She also serves on the board of directors for the Geneva-on-the-Lake Visitors Bureau.

Cindy Lindberg Photo
Cindy Lindberg

Grand River Cellars + Ruff Life on the Lake
AT LARGE

Cindy is the co-owner of Grand River Cellars Winery & Restaurant and Ruff Life on the Lake Dog Cafe & Boutique at Geneva-on-the-Lake. Prior to owning the winery, she worked part-time at Debonne’ Vineyards since 1997, first as a bartender and then later as director of special events and advertising. She lives in Austinburg and is married with one daughter. Cindy wants to see Ohio Wine Country thrive, and wants to promote this region as a great place to visit, to work, or to live.

Thomas Michel Photo
Thomas Michel

Board Member

Representing Lift Bridge Community Assocation
AT LARGE

Thomas retired to North Kingsville several years ago after a career in tourism and is currently a member of LBCA. After his education at John Carroll and Case Western Reserve Universities, he worked for Cleveland radio stations as a sales manager. Thomas was a marketing manager for Ohio Motorist AAA before becoming the Regional Sales Manager for National AAA where he was responsible for the TourBooks in MI, IN, and KY. He and his wife also started a business which published magazines and tourism related publications. He has served on many boards such as: Michigan Travel and Tourism, Pennsylvania Tourism Council, Geauga Co. Tourism, and was a founding member of Chardon Tomorrow which became a Main Street Community through Heritage Ohio. Thomas believes that strong economic development creates an attractive destination and a desirable place to live, work, and play.

Shane Gelfer Photo
Shane Gelfer

Board Member

Sparky's Place Restaurant
AT LARGE

Shane is the owner/operator of Sparky's Place in Conneaut. His 17 years as an international retail consultant advising clients in transition has given him a breadth of knowledge and problem-solving skills that will be valuable in helping to guide the ACCVB forward in new development and future growth. Having lived in large cities, small towns, and tiny villages around the world for work, it has given him a unique perspective on how each strives to attract tourism and encourage commerce.

Bill Holden Photo
Bill Holden

Board Member

Buccia Vineyard & Bed and Breakfast + The Cider House
SMALL LODGER

Bill has lived in Ashtabula County most of his life; grew up in Pierpont and graduated from Edgewood. He has gained a great deal of prospective of what this County has to offer, and that is why he returned home to grow their businesses and develop more opportunities at Buccia Vineyard and B&B in Conneaut. His professional career was spent in manufacturing operations, human resource management, and IT consulting. Bill has served on various boards, including Big Brother/Sisters, Unitarian Universalist Church, and Nashville Jazz Workshop, serving the last three years as president. His past experiences, along with passion for continued growth, development, and success for our region provide value to the ACCVB Board.

Eric Frantz Photo
Eric Frantz

Board Member

Hearthside Grove Lake Erie
AT LARGE

Eric and his wife, Diane, moved to Ashtabula County in 2002 where they found a terrific place to live and raise their kids with the quality of life they appreciate—beautiful natural surroundings, great communities, and friendly people. Eric is now the Managing Partner for Heartside Grove Lake Erie. Eric has also enjoyed time spent on other boards, including the GOTL CVB, and as an adjunct Hospitality Management professor for Kent State University. He has served on the ACCVB Board for 8 years. Eric believes it is an exciting time for tourism in Ashtabula County and is proud to play a role in growing it.

Charlene Horgan Photo
Charlene Horgan

General Manager

The Geneva Lodge + Lake Erie Canopy Tours
THE LODGE & CONFERENCE CENTER

Charlene has been with The Lodge since it opened in May of 2004. She was the Controller for 15 years and has been the General Manager since June 2019. In her Finance career, she gained experience in the Manufacturing, Insurance, Medical and Association industries. By far, she finds the Hospitality industry the most interesting and rewarding. During her time at The Lodge, she has seen the tourism industry in Ashtabula County grow significantly. She looks forward to continuing to help promote tourism in Ashtabula County.

Mark Brockway Photo
Mark Brockway

Board Member

North Coast Marina & Campground
AT LARGE

Mark was raised in and has spent most of his life involved in the boating industry.  He believes that tourism is one of the best assets we have in our county and how vital it is to our local economy. He would like to help bring as many people to our county as possible to enjoy the wonderful recreation options that we have to offer.

Jeff Orloff Photo
Jeff Orloff

President

SPIRE Institute and Academy
AT LARGE

In addition to his role as President of SPIRE, Jeff has also serves as the president ReCreation Sports and Entertainment. Jeff has overseen the rise of SPIRE from start-up to world-renowned Sports Academy and Event Producer. Prior to this, he worked for IMG for over 23 years. At IMG, Jeff served in numerous capacities including Special Assistant to Mark H. McCormack; Associate Counsin; Operations – IMG Administration, Vice President and Director of Operations and Events. Jeff’s role at both ReCreation and IMG requires him to be involved with the greater Cleveland business community on the highest levels, in the business community as well as the philanthropic community. Jeff is married and has two sons. He enjoys the Cleveland sports teams and exploring Ashtabula Counties many great wineries, restaurants, and destinations.

Jennifer Diehl

Owner

Brant's Apple Orchard
AT LARGE

Jenn is personally invested in local tourism with several businesses that draw visitors to the area and enhance their experience while they are here. Her largest venture is Brant’s Apple Orchard, a premier fall destination that draws thousands of visitors to the area from August to November. In addition, Jenn owns two vacation rental businesses that provide high end lodging to visitors – Orchard View Villas offers a unique opportunity to stay right on the apple orchard property and Rustic River Retreats is a 27-acre property located in the heart of the Grand River Valley Wine region in Austinburg, Ohio. She has first-hand experience with lodging, running several businesses, and what it takes to help draw customers to the area. As if she isn’t busy enough, Jenn also works full-time as a Physical Therapist in Jefferson, where she lives with her husband, Brian, and two sons.

Ohio's Covered Bridge Capital

DID YOU KNOW? Ashtabula County is home to both the longest and the shortest covered bridges in the United States!

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