Nielsen Sports Group promoted Kenji Haroutunian as the new show director for the FlyFishing Retailer World Trade Expo (FFR), where he will manage strategic planning, staff, sales, marketing and budgeting for the event.

Haroutunian will work closely with the American Fly Fishing Trade Association (AFFTA) to encourage growth opportunities for core partners and explore relationships with new industry companies. Haroutunian fills the vacant position most recently held by Peter Devin.

“As FlyFishing Retailer continues to evolve to meet the needs of the fly fishing industry, the entire American Fly Fishing Trade Association board of director's and I welcome Kenji Haroutunian as our Show Director and look forward to working closely with him to make FFR an even more exciting and dynamic show,” stated Robert Ramsey, president of AFFTA.

Haroutunian has been a member of the Nielsen Sports Group team since 1999, most recently as a senior account executive for the FlyFishing Retailer and Outdoor Retailer trade shows. He was instrumental in developing the Green Steps program, an environmentally-conscious business model now being adopted by other Nielsen events.

“I am thrilled and honored to lead the FlyFishing Retailer team,” commented Haroutunian. “The challenge of representing Nielsen’s integrated business solutions to the markets we serve is one I’m looking forward to meeting head on. For over 20 years I’ve been advocating for people to recreate outdoors, from fly fishing to climbing rocks, and I hope to continue my work from this new post, serving the industry with the same mission. It’s really exciting to see the energy out there for youth and women’s involvement in the industry, advancing education for the preservation of our natural resources and promoting the art of fly fishing”

Prior to his time with Nielsen Sports Group, Haroutunian spent 14 storied years at Adventure 16, a Southern California outfitter, where he ascended from salesperson to store manager and senior instructor. He has spent more than a decade teaching climbing and advanced outdoor skills through the American Mountain Guide Association and has worked with Outward Bound, Big City Mountaineers and Summit Youth Adventures, among others. Haroutunian also serves as president of the Friends of Joshua Tree, a non-profit organization dedicated to preserving the historical tradition of climbing in Joshua Tree National Park.

“Kenji has cultivated exceptional relationships with many key brands within the fly fishing industry, especially with our partners at AFFTA which I feel will greatly benefit all of our customers and the industry,” said Joseph Flynn, Vice President, Nielsen Sports Group. “He is already tuned in to the needs of emerging and established manufacturers, distributors, guides/outfitters, specialty retailers and industry influencers, so we are confident he will hit the ground running. As the FlyFishing Retailer show grows, we look forward to Kenji’s expert leadership and dedication.”